Education Secretary Miguel Cardona on Thursday railed against the idea of arming teachers to combat school shootings in the wake of the massacre at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.
Cardona blasted the proposal while appearing on “The View” in response to a question from co-host Sunny Hostin, who referenced a piece of proposed legislation in Ohio that would allow school districts to arm employees and only require 24 hours of training.
“Those are some of the stupidest proposals I’ve heard in all my time as an educator, so that’s my answer to that,” Cardona responded.
“Listen, we need to make sure we’re doing sensible legislation, making sure our schoolhouses are safe as much as possible. But to say that we’re going to arm teachers to protect students? What happens when a teacher goes out on maternity leave? Are we going to give the substitute of the day a gun?”
The Education secretary argued that the proposal to arm teachers demonstrates that “some people are clueless when it comes to what’s happening in our schools” and that the suggestion shows disrespect to a profession that “bent over backwards” to protect students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“So I’m tired of hearing about these silly proposals that are doing more to lift up people’s national profile than protect children,” Cardona added.
His comments come amid a GOP push to focus on boosting security in schools in response to school shootings. However, gun control advocates have pointed out that some of the security measures Republicans are proposing were already in place at some of the schools that have experienced mass shootings — including Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas — and did not work to stop the shooting.
A bipartisan group of senators is negotiating a package to address gun violence, focusing on incentives for states to enforce red flag laws and strengthen background checks for firearm purchases.
The House passed a far more expansive package of gun legislation on Wednesday, largely along party lines, that faces certain GOP opposition in the Senate, where 60 votes are necessary to overcome a filibuster.
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