Over the last several years, some of San Antonio’s larger school district police departments have been quietly adding assault weapons, often referred to as long rifles by law enforcement officials, to their weaponry, and now some of the smaller school districts are doing it too….
The growing number of assault weapons in school police arsenals is alarming. Regrettably, there are few safeguards to ensure officers who handle these high-powered rifles get the training they need to handle them or that the school districts have implemented strict policies on their use, especially in some dysfunctional school districts.
And that question is: What exactly is to be feared here? It strikes me that this is an offshoot of the same argument that is used whenever the discussion of armed individuals in schools comes up. Dysfunctional school districts? What exactly is Padilla afraid is going to happen here — that the police in said districts might use their weapons to subdue generally unruly kids? If they’re going to do that then maybe they shouldn’t be police officers in the first place. And you’d think people like that would get screened out of the process anyway. If they’re not, well, that’s an indictment on police procedures in general — which is a lot bigger problem than cops merely having access to semiautomatic rifles on the job. And in that case, focusing on the guns is a fool’s errand.
But then, it usually is. And that would explain so much about why people do it.