Texas state Rep. Dan Flynn(R) has proposed a bill called the Teacher’s Protection Act (H.B.868). It would allow teachers to use deadly force on school property, a school bus, or at an event sponsored by a school either in self-defense or defense of students at the school. Teachers would also be allowed to use guns while defending school property. In addition, teachers who shot someone under such circumstances would be granted “civil immunity,” which means they could not be held liable if the student they shot was injured or killed. Teachers in Texas already have the right to keep guns in the classroom.
Flynn is a strong supporter of gun rights. He has worked on pieces of legislation that permitted people to have guns on college campuses and that reduced the required minimum number of hours of training for a concealed handgun license.
Gun advocates have been demanding that teachers be armed ever since the Sandy Hook shooting in 2012 that resulted in 20 fatalities. Gun control advocates, however, state that easy access to guns increases crime. Psychologists also note that easy access to guns increases the chance of somebody getting shot during an emotionally charged confrontation.
Civil rights organizations also oppose the bill. They point out that black and Latino students are already more likely to be disciplined harshly at school than are their white classmates. They are more likely to be suspended or expelled. Civil rights activists worry that since students of color are already being targeted for their behavior by school authorities, they would be more likely to be the victims of gun-wielding teachers than their white peers.