Let's rewind back to Dec. 21, 2012 — about four weeks ago, and exactly a week after Adam Lanza killed 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn. On that day, NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said that "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." He also proposed that armed guards be stationed at every school in the country to prevent mass shootings.
Well, today we had our first school shooting since Newtown, and it just so happened to prove the NRA very wrong. Today at Taft Union High School in Taft, Calif., a student entered into a classroom armed with a shotgun and shot a classmate and a teacher. Taft Union employed an armed guard, but that person was not on campus today after being "snowed in," according to Kern County sheriff Donny Youngblood. Of course, the NRA would say that this precisely proves their point, but instead it shows the fallacy of the entire argument. Today, the armed guard was "snowed in." Tomorrow, the armed guard will be out to lunch or taking his or her mother to the doctor or in bed with the flu. A fleet of armed guards deployed to cover every school in America just isn't feasible.
But even more important is why the still unnamed shooter — who police say was holding 20 rounds in his pocket — didn't wound or kill anyone else. According to police, the shooter was talked down by another teacher and a supervisor at the school.
"They talked him into putting that shotgun down. He in fact told the teacher, 'I don't want to shoot you,' and named the person that he wanted to shoot," Youngblood said.
"The heroics of these two people goes without saying. ... They could have just as easily ... tried to get out of the classroom and left students and they didn't," the sheriff said. "They knew not to let him leave the classroom with that shotgun."
This itself isn't the only solution, either. Victoria Soto, who was killed at Sandy Hook along with some of her students, likely pleaded with Lanza to put his gun down, too. But it's a very high profile reminder that more guns isn't the "only thing" that stops guns. And there are several teenagers still alive today to show for it.