The father of a Parkland high school shooting victim urged lawmakers and President Donald Trump to stop saying “arm the teachers” in discussing school safety measures, as it’s “doing a disservice to the people of Florida” by distracting from more important issues.
Instead, armed and trained “professionals” is “the word we should be spreading — not putting the ‘teacher’ word out there,” said Andrew Pollack. “Putting professionals in the right places that would be in the right spot — so if something happens like happened in Parkland, they’re going to make sure it doesn’t happen.”
Meadow Pollack was one of 17 victims killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on February 14 by 19-year-old gunman Nikolas Cruz, an expelled former student. The grieving father’s comments came in an interview Monday on Fox Business Network’s “Varney & Co.”
Pollack praised Florida officials for passing the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act last week, which implements new gun control regulations and allows training and arming of volunteer school personnel.
“All the families are satisfied. We all came together unanimously, and we spoke with the governor. And we wanted the governor to sign this bill,” Pollack told host Stuart Varney. “I think it’s really good for the state of Florida, and it moves the country in the right direction of protecting our kids.”
When Varney asked Pollack if he was satisfied with the extent of the bill, Pollack said, “Everything’s perfect in it. I don’t want more. But you’ve got to stop saying, ‘Arm the teachers.’ That’s doing a disservice to the people of Florida.”
Pollack insisted that “it’s not about arming teachers, Stu. It’s about getting trained, qualified people in the right places to protect our children. That’s what it’s about.”
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Many gun control advocates and mainstream media figures vehemently oppose allowing trained and armed teachers in the classroom. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has even gone so far as to ban all armed New York Police Department officers from patrolling inside the city’s schools — instead opting for unarmed school safety officers.
Pollack praised President Trump for supporting school safety bills and for “listening” to the voices of the grieving Parkland survivors and families.
“The president came out with a safety bill. So he’s listening. He’s the first president to come out with this safety bill, and I commend the president for stepping up and taking action for the interest of the people, you know?” Pollack said. “And that’s what we all want — we want our kids protected when they go to school.”