Texas congressman: Principal should have been armed for self-defense
December 16th, 2012
12:21 PM ET
10 years ago

Texas congressman: Principal should have been armed for self-defense

(CNN) - U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert said the deadly Connecticut school shooting could have been halted sooner if staff at the school had been equipped with guns.

"I wish to God (the principal) had had an M4 in her office, locked up, so when she heard gunfire she pulls it out … and takes him out, takes his head off before he can kill those precious kids," the Republican from Texas said on "Fox News Sunday."

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The gun control debate has been renewed since 20 students and six adults were killed Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Many lawmakers and politicians have called for the renewal of the federal assault weapons ban, a piece of legislation that expired in 2004 at the end of its 10-year term but has yet to be renewed.

Gohmert argued that as the country takes on a conversation about gun rights, people must be "open-minded." He said emotional reactions will naturally lead to a desire to "get rid of all guns," but he said that "you (should) use your head and look at the facts."

"Every mass killing of more than three people in recent history has been in a place where guns were prohibited, except for one," he said, arguing for looser gun laws so more people can be armed for self-protection. "They know no one will be armed."

Gohmert made headlines in July when he made similar remarks, saying more deaths could have been prevented in the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting if someone could have fired back at the gunman.

Asked why people need guns in places such as schools, malls and movie theaters, Gohmert said, "For the reason George Washington said, 'A free people should be an armed people.' "

The Second Amendment, he said, "ensures against the tyranny of the government if they know the biggest army is the American people."

On a separate show Sunday, former Education Secretary William Bennett made a similar argument, saying the political debate should be put on hold while emotions are still high.

"The whole nation is mourning. It's an important moment. Let the tears dry before we head off into all these directions at once," he said on NBC's "Meet the Press."

Bennett, a Republican, also agreed with the idea that schools should have a gun.

"I'm not so sure I wouldn't want one person in a school armed, ready for this kind of thing," he said. "It would have to be someone who's trained, someone who's responsible, but my God if you can prevent this kind of thing."

Filed under: Connecticut • Gun rights • Louie Gohmert • Texas
soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. Chipster

    Yes, indeed! Great idea Congressman Wacko. What we need to do is turn our schools into the OK Corral – what Texans must call a "sporting event." Are all Texan leaders this ignorant? What we need is sane parents who get involved in their children's lives and take a genuine interest in their education. Nothing will ever stop crazy people from doing crazy things like this but, perhaps if parents do something called 'parenting,' some of these incidents can be prevented. More guns, bigger guns, missile launchers, grenades, and frontier justice is certainly NOT the answer to this problem.

    December 16, 2012 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  2. Chief

    This sad that such a thought could be in a leader's mind.Does this congressman think two wrongs can be right?
    How can a principal carry a gun to school?
    This congressman is an idiot!

    December 16, 2012 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  3. waikikijohn

    this guy does not belong in Congress, period

    December 16, 2012 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  4. alfred

    Let the Texas Republican Congressman write an obit for one the children and then write 19 more.

    December 16, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  5. PeeBee

    So, according to the congressman, henceforth, our school principals needs a second qualification – a combat training – so that he/she can confront a shooter in position with a deadly gun. hmmmm!!!

    December 16, 2012 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  6. KC Yankee

    Congressman Gohmert has provided the most fascinating reading I've done today. So a guy with a pea-brain like this is actually voting on laws that might govern this country? Astonishing, really, just astonishing. Principals should all be trained to take out psychotic killers? Does he really think that in most cases by the time an administrator became aware of something like this happening that he/she could ride to the rescue and nip it in the bud?

    December 16, 2012 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  7. David

    This Congressman is a complete idiot. The known facts don't even support what he was saying. First, the Principal was a woman. Second, she was in a conference room in a meeting. She couldn't have gone to the office to get her M4 in all likelihood because she wasn't in the office.

    December 16, 2012 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  8. Steve

    School principals with sidearms strapped to their side is the new norm? Has Texas become the new Somalia?

    December 16, 2012 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  9. Sanjay

    How about giving every kinder-gardener a gun at admission time !! Also teach them to load and fire the gun instead of how to hold a pencil. BTW.. this is a great way of getting the economic woes sorted out as well. Like IBM's 401K plan, this will be great way to solves the social security, medicare, etc problems for future generations. If kids don't live to see retirement.. there is nobody to pay to !!

    December 16, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  10. Jmacq1

    I guess I missed the part where combat marksmanship was a qualification to become a school principal.

    But I guess to some minds everyone in the US is a Navy SEAL just waiting to happen.

    All other things being the same, if the principal had a M4 in the office, particularly "locked" in the office, it's probably more likely that she'd have shot another student or faculty member than the shooter, or would have been killed themself.

    Just like in the Colorado theater shooting. Anyone trying to shoot back at that gunman probably would have done more harm than good, because contrary to the beliefs of many a gun-enthusiast out there, you are NOT Rambo, and actual combat-trained, combat-experienced veterans are a TINY portion of our population, which means that once you're in that life-or-death scenario, there are VERY little guarantees that you're going to come out of that situation as "the big hero" as opposed to say, "The well meaning idiot that ended up making things worse."

    Though at least to Bennet's credit, he actually bothered to mention that the person that had access to "the school gun" should have training in how to use it. Of course, then how long would it be before schools are constantly being broken into so folks can steal said "school gun." My guess? Not long.

    December 16, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  11. Arden1967

    One wonders where his God were when the kids are being shot at... Arming the teachers? How about the first grader themselves.

    Too many Idiotic politicians like this one.

    December 16, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  12. Guns

    Guns are easily obtained illegally by criminal hands, good think they are less than 1% of the population.
    Guns taken away from the law abiding 99% is not the answer...

    Stupid libs...

    December 16, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    "BOTTOM LINE: If the Principal had been running down the hall- armed, instead of helpless, all 20 children would be here."

    The shooter was wearing a bullet proof vest. What are the odds that the principal would have been able to get to her "gun" in time? She wasn't in her office when he shot his way through a window, barged in and started shooting up the nearest classrooms filled with children. His evil act was completed in a matter of minutes. Including killing the principal. Blame him. Blame the easy access he had to guns in his home. Do not blame those who gave their lives to protect the innocent for not having their own acces to high powered weapons in an Elementary School.

    December 16, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  14. jcs

    this idea is not too far-fetched, but i would not want it to be a teacher or a principal. i think perhaps an armed law enforcement official that is part of the police force or other formal peacekeeper. one armed officer stationed at each school.

    December 16, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  15. Guns

    Im blaming the mother who apparently thought it was ok to fill the mind of an autistic spectrum kid of DOOMSDAY.

    That will be the 'answer/motive' you will all find out soon enough.

    December 16, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  16. ARob

    And the gun would be paid for by what...the funds he and his ilk have historically denied to education and other government-funded social concerns? And the training would be organized by the labor unions that other Republicans are viciously attacking lately?

    I swear, Republicans seem to share a deluded vision of living out the movie "Red Dawn" in real life, as if that would be a good thing. It's the kind of thinking that dwelling on a gun-slinging, decentralized-government, theocratic fantasy-world will produce.

    December 16, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  17. don in albuquerque

    Lobby, lobby, lobby. Guys like this are bought and paid for by the NRA. Time we started calling lobbying what it is. Bribery. Gus like this congressman are only tooooooooooooo happy to take their money.

    December 16, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
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