Keystone Central takes wise action to arm security officer

The Keystone Central School Board voted last week to allow their full-time district police officer to carry a gun in the district’s schools.

Good for them.

The board also approved a provision to arm other security personnel with nonlethal methods of control, including tasers, collapsible batons and pepper spray. Good for them again.

To secure today’s schools from the type of tragedies that have made national headlines requires a no-nonsense approach and that’s what the board’s two votes represent.

We are in favor of any school board that wants to take a proactive stance against violence and tragedy visiting its schools.

Shortly after the tragedy in Connecticut in November, the National Rifle Association advocated stationing an armed officer at school entrances. Critics of the NRA and anti-gun advocates scoffed at the idea.

But these are not the times to allow personal, political dislikes to get in the way of the safety of our children. It is our belief that in just about every school tragedy the underlying factor is a mentally unstable person equipped with a weapon that can do harm.

If an armed officer gets in the way of that person before they get to the entrance of that school, something likely will happen to keep the tragedy from happening. In a perfect world, they will decide against creating conflict. Other outcomes, such as self-inflicted wounds or an exchange with personnel, are certainly possible.