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I have seen a lot of hysterical opposition to HB 1253, introduced by Rep. Jim Lucas. Let me try to clarify a few things.

1. Under current Indiana law, it is entirely up to a school board whether to authorize teachers (or any other non-law-enforcement personnel) to possess guns on school property. Rep. Lucas’ bill doesn’t change that authority in any way. If you don’t think teachers should be armed: tell your local school board. If your school board agrees, teachers in your school system won’t be armed – whether or not this bill passes. You win – end of story.

2. If (and only if) a school board makes the decision to authorize members of a school’s staff to possess firearms on school property, it is obviously critical for any such staff members to be well-trained. This bill provides a standardized curriculum of training in firearms handling, safety, storage and marksmanship – as well as active shooter response and first aid – to those staff members who volunteer to participate in such a program (and whom the school board approves). It also provides state funding for that training. And because it is specifically designed for teachers, this training program is actually superior for that purpose to the firearms training received by some law enforcement personnel who can already legally possess firearms in schools.

3. Opposition to this bill can’t logically be based on opposition to arming teachers (see No. 1). For that reason, if you oppose this bill (which is totally your prerogative), it probably means that you:  a) don’t understand current law;  b) don’t understand what this bill does and doesn’t do;  c) oppose training any school staff members whom a school board decides to arm;  d) oppose state funding for that training; and/or  e) have such an irrational fear of firearms (or hatred of the Second Amendment) that facts, logic and reason simply don’t matter.

Guy A. Relford is host of “The Gun Guy” radio show on WIBC. H e is also a Second Amendment attorney in Carmel, Indiana and the owner and chief instructor of Tactical Firearms Training, LLC in Indianapolis.   He is a NRA-certified firearms instructor and chief range safety officer and the author of Gun Safety & Cleaning for Dummies (Wiley & Sons Publications 2012).