Two leading teachers unions came out strongly against a proposal Friday by the National Rifle Association to place armed police officers at the nation's schools.
The suggestion by Wayne LaPierre, the chief lobbyist for the National Rifle Association, came in an eagerly anticipated news conference that broke the organization's week-long silence since the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., that took the lives of 26 people at the school.
"The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," LaPierre said, in an appearance that many pundits quickly declared a disaster.
Randi Weingarten, head of the 1.5 million-member American Federation of Teachers, immediately called LaPierre's proposal "irresponsible and dangerous."
"After remaining silent for an entire week following the Newtown massacre, the NRA’s first comments were to call for more guns in our schools and our society," Weingarten said in a statement. "This is both irresponsible and dangerous. No matter how much money the NRA spends or propaganda it tries to spread, one thing is clear -- the NRA is not serious about confronting the epidemic of gun violence in our nation."
The AFT wasn't the only union of educators to pounce on the gun lobby. Dennis Van Roekel, head of the National Education Association, also quickly denounced the NRA, calling the organization "out of touch" and its assumptions "delusional."
"It is shocking that following this tragedy, the National Rifle Association has called for more guns in our schools and avoided talking about commonsense measures to prevent guns from getting in the hands of people who shouldn’t have them in the first place," Van Roekel said in a statement. "Their delusional assumption that everything other than guns contribute to these tragedies reflects just how out of touch the NRA has become."
See the Hero Teachers of Newton post below.
The principal, Dawn Hochsprung, 47, and the school psychologist, Mary Sherlach, 52, ran towards the intruder to try to stop him. They both were killed.
The killer went in search of defenseless babies and teachers. The teachers heard the gunfire, tried to hide their children, hid them in closets and cabinets.
Vicki Soto, 27, put herself between the killer and her children. He killed her. Somehow some of them escaped. Six ran to a nearby house. They told the surprised homeowner,, "We can't go back to our school. Our teacher is dead. We don't have a teacher."