By Staff Reports
GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. — Earlier today, Representative Will Ainsworth (R - Guntersville) responded to U.S. Senator Doug Jones' criticism of his bill to arm Alabama Peace Officer Safety and Training (APOST) trained teachers in effort to better protect schools in an active shooter situation.
"I think that's the dumbest idea I've ever heard,” Jones told Alabama’s News 5 on Monday in response to the proposal from state Rep. Will Ainsworth (R). “I think it's crazy. You don't need 40–50 guns in there, and it's a cost issue.”
“At the news conference outlining our proposal, I was joined by two Alabama sheriffs, three school superintendents, and roughly a dozen classroom teachers who support the idea of allowing educators to have access to guns during instructional hours in the event of a school shooting, so when Doug Jones dismisses the idea, he insults the law enforcement personnel who risk their lives daily in the line of duty and the brave educators who simply want the right to protect their students and themselves.
It should come as no surprise that a Schumer-loving, gun-controlling liberal Democrat like Doug Jones would oppose any idea that embraces the Second Amendment and literally puts the power to fight back against gun attacks in the hands of trained and certified teachers. He believes teachers should protect their classrooms armed with No. 2 pencils.
The real ‘dumbest idea’ occurred when Liberal Doug thought he could get away with voting against a ban on late term abortions while representing a pro-life state that honors innocent, unborn life as much as Alabama does.
I will happily challenge Doug Jones to a public debate on the merits of arming trained and certified teachers and utilizing their Second Amendment constitutional rights as the best way to discourage and mitigate school shootings like the one that occurred in Florida last week."
Ainsworth noted that educators in his area actually contacted him with the idea and asked him to sponsor it shortly after news of the tragic attack at Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School was announced.
The bill is similar to policies already on the books in at least 19 other states.
Under the provisions of House Bill 435, which currently has 31 co-sponsors, specially selected teachers and administrators who undergo a thorough mental evaluation and successfully complete annual APOST training would have access to firearms during school hours if an active shooter scenario occurred.
Participation in the program would be voluntary, and while taxpayers would cover the cost of training, the selected educators would be required to provide their own firearms.
Much like undercover air marshals who patrol commercial air flights, the names of those authorized to carry firearms would be kept secret from the school population and public, but local law enforcement would be provided with a specific marker identifying the participants.
Additional details and the full text of the legislation may be found by visiting this link on the Alabama Legislature’s website: http://alisondb.legislature.state.al.us/ALISON/SearchableInstruments/2018RS/PrintFiles/HB435-int.pdf