In a televised discussion about arming school teachers in the wake of the horrific February 14th mass shooting, MSNBC terrorism expert Malcolm Nance said that armed teachers would not be an effective first line of defense for vulnerable students.
While his statements and resume may seem to form a convincing argument, a deeper look into the analyst’s expertise reveals he may not be the gun guru the left is touting him to be.
MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle had asked Nance how a teacher armed with a handgun would fare against an attacker armed with a rifle like the AR-15, the type used by the shooter in the Parkland attack.
“It’s not like the movies,” Nance said. “The movies have nothing to do with reality. You are putting yourself where you could be killed…we have a lot of people who are going on what they think they see in the movies. If you’ve got a handgun and that’s all the tool you have, you have to be extremely well-trained to go out and engage someone who has a fully automatic or semi-automatic weapon, and to be quite honest, depending on the distance that you’re away, civilians don’t understand, in close quarters the first thing you are going to have to experience is the explosive sound of the weapon going off, not yours but the shooters.”
Nance went on to say that arming school teachers was a “ludicrous idea.” His rationale for his claim was that police SWAT teams are trained to look for weapons in hands when they enter an area, not identifying individuals, and that they will shoot anyone holding a handgun immediately, and ask questions later.
Nance is a highly-decorated veteran of the U.S. Navy, where he specialized in Naval Cryptology. This involved training and experience in various counter-terrorism and intelligence operations. He was involved in several combat operations in the 1980s as an intelligence expert, and was also an instructor in Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape and Advanced Terrorism, Abduction and Hostage Survival courses. After retiring from the military, he founded the Special Readiness Services International company, an intelligence consulting firm, and on the morning of September 11th, 2001, he was present when American Airlines flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon, and helped to coordinate rescue operations. He has also served as an intelligence consultant in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other areas overseas.
Let’s be clear about one thing: Nance has an impressive and honorable record of service to his country. He is extremely qualified to speak to issues of terrorism and intelligence operations. However, there is no indication in his bio that he has any particular experience or training with firearms, or that he has ever defended himself with one in a life-threatening situation. Unless there is information missing from the seemingly comprehensive biography, he doesn’t seem to be any more qualified to speak to the issue of the effectiveness of armed school teachers than anyone else.
What Ruhle should have asked, if she were an objective and inquiring journalist, was whether Mr. Nance would prefer, given the choice, to have a gun in his hands when facing an immediate threat from an armed opponent or to be defenseless. Would he be more concerned with the person facing him with a weapon, or the possibility that the police might shoot him when they finally arrived?
The arguments against allowing school teachers to be armed usually involve lack of training with their weapon, the possibility that a student could get ahold of their gun, or that the teacher themselves might decide to start shooting up the place. The latter two arguments are ‘what-if’ scenarios that are hardly worth consideration. Yes, just about anything ‘could’ happen — a semi truck could crash through the classroom, or a lab experiment could blow up. These are situations that, while possible, are statistically insignificant enough to be left out of the equation.
The issue of training to be competent to safely carry and use a firearm is a valid concern. President Trump, in his endorsement of allowing teachers to be armed, also said that they should have the training to use them. Such training is readily available.
In Colorado, where teachers are allowed to carry a gun if they go through training, the Faculty/Administrator Safety Training and Emergency Response (FAST) has been created to provide the necessary training to educators to meet the Colorado Peace Officer Standards and Training handgun qualifications. It’s a program that can be easily instituted anywhere.
Using a firearm isn’t rocket science. And it stands to reason that a potential killer will be much less likely to attack a target where they know that there will be armed individuals ready to stop them.
Now, if the liberals will only listen to reason…
~ Liberty Planet