November 25, 2014
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Why not armed school guards?

To the Editor:

This letter is in regards to the article in the 1/8/13 Beacon edition. The article is called “Armed School Guards Not In Offing.” I just had a few points of view that I wanted to bring up related to this article and another article about President Obama’s children and their school. The article about the president I saw on the Internet, not the Beacon.
The Monday after the school shooting in Connecticut, Warwick police cruisers were outside each of the city’s schools. The elementary schools were all locked. There are also other security measures that have been put in place as well. These measures are all wonderful ideas; the students and staff need to be kept safe.
Right now, the police are not present on a daily basis but they are visiting the schools. I don’t know if this is a good idea. Something can happen in an instant. There needs to be something done, something more than the police visiting. I know there is an expense of having police at each school; I am going to assume this is why the city is not entertaining this idea. Also, I understand that it is difficult to have the police everywhere. They can only be stretched so far. But, as far as the expense goes, why don’t the city politicians take a pay cut and help pay to protect the students and staff? I know if I received a notice that my property tax was increasing to have police at each school, I would not have a problem with it. You can’t put a price tag on protecting a school.
What I find ironic is that the president wants to have stricter gun control and his two children attend a school that not only have secret service but 11 armed guards as well. Not only do they have the 11 armed officers, now the school is looking to hire more. What makes his children any different than a child that is attending another school? I understand the Secret Service; that is part of the protection for the First Family. What I don’t understand is why he would not want all other school children and staff protected the same way his two children are. Secret Service is not an option for every school, but armed guards are. Lastly, I must say the changes the Warwick schools have made thus far are a vast improvement to the security that was in place in the past.

Michael Forte
Warwick


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