Ohio School District Moves To Arm . . . Janitors

220px-GroundskeeperWillieThe response to the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut continues to get more and more bizarre. In Arizona, a controversial sheriff will have a volunteer “posse” at schools armed to the teeth. The NRA president wants armed guards at every school. Now, in Montpelier, Ohio, the school district wants to arm custodial staff who will now have push brooms, plungers, and semi-automatic weapons.

Montpelier Exempted Village School District superintendent Dr. Jamison Grime believes that such a move makes schools safer even though such attacks are exceptionally rare and custodial positions are viewed as requiring the lowest levels of qualifications in the school system. Grime however insists that they will be put through training and presumably will not use their weapons to shoot out burned bulbs or loosen stumps in the schoolyard.

The school board approved the proposal unanimously for four armed janitors.
How intense will the training be, you ask?

Two days.

Below is one such custodian going into battle in an elementary school:

Source: Toledo Blade

42 thoughts on “Ohio School District Moves To Arm . . . Janitors

  1. Americans are easily frightened and then manipulated into acting against their own interests. This, however, is 10x crazy even for America.

  2. Please stop the fear mongering with the gratuitous unnecessary colorful use of the scare-term “semi automatic.” Enough people are completely misinformed about the meaning of that term without the subtle implication that it is a scary bad thing – “and probably means machine gun, right?” – from legal scholars. The pundits and lobbyists will throw it around enough, and irrationally scare people enough, without your help.

  3. Stupid idea…yeah probably. But then again I don’t live in this village so it really is not my issue nor yours or anyone else from the outside. They are capable of making their own decisions with respect to their local schools despite the vast majority of people probably disagreeing with that decision.

  4. Good grief…. What happened to having a street cop in every school? Funding get cut? This is ludicrous.

  5. ALBANY — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and lawmakers agreed on Monday to a broad package of changes to gun laws that would expand the state’s ban on assault weapons and would include new measures to keep guns away from the mentally ill.

    The state Senate, controlled by a coalition of Republicans and a handful of Democrats, approved the legislative package just after 11 p.m. by a lopsided vote of 43 to 18. The Assembly, where Democrats who have been strongly supportive of gun control have an overwhelming majority, planned to vote on the measure Tuesday.

    Approval of the legislation would make New York the first state to act in response to the mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., last month.

    Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat, had pressed lawmakers to move quickly in response to Newtown, saying, “the people of this state are crying out for help.” And the Legislature proceeded with unusual haste: Monday was the first full day of this year’s legislative session.

    “We don’t need another tragedy to point out the problems in the system,” Mr. Cuomo said at a news conference. NYT A better solution in New York

  6. A recent WaPo-ABC poll shows 55% of Americans support having trained armed guards in schools, not janitors however. Please don’t attack the messenger. I don’t want armed guards in schools and I would venture ~95% of commenters here don’t either. But, there is another reality outside this insular forum. I don’t have contempt for that 55%. It’s based on fear more than anything else. Righteous politicians don’t motivate by fear or anger. I currently see both sides doing so and it’s disturbing.

  7. That would be located in Ohio Congressional District 5 — Rep. Robert Latta [R]

    Montpelier is in Williams County which went big for Romney during the General Election and the Ohio Secretary of State, Jon Husted (Mr. Voter Suppression) was raised there.

    Check out The Buckeye Firearms Association and the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy

    What can I say?

  8. Well, I would not arm the math teachers. Nor the Principal. If the custodian has been a huner his whole life and knows guns in and out then why not make the custodian a guardian? In my neck of the woods growing up in rural Missouri every janitor in every school had a rifle handy on the gun rack over the front seat of his truck out on the parking lot and probably a pistol under the seat. What is your problem with having one inside where it might be handy if some jim dandy named Aaron came around trying to kill kids?

  9. It still amazes me that anyone would think that having more guns at the school makes the kids safer. Control the crazy, yes, semi-automatic guns and high capacity magazines and close the gun show loophole and require all gun owners in every state to go through a background check, including mental health background. I would be in favor of trained police checking the school grounds on a regular basis.
    By the way, requiring insurance to own a gun is also a good idea. It seems that in Ohio, they now want to hire janitors and turn them into a posse, all in two days! They may want to check the background of their janitors first.

  10. “A recent WaPo-ABC poll shows 55% of Americans support having trained armed guards in schools, not janitors however. Please don’t attack the messenger. ”

    IIRC, that question was ambiguously worded. There are plenty of schools in the US right now that have problems with gang violence and currently have armed police in the school. That’s probably a good idea for those schools. However, that doesn’t mean I support the NRA proposal of having armed guards at every school. That seems like a hugely unnecessary, ineffective, expensive, and harmful idea.

    “Please stop the fear mongering with the gratuitous unnecessary colorful use of the scare-term “semi automatic.” ”

    What? “Semi-automatic” is the correct, non-pejorative name for semi-automatic weapons. How are you supposed to talk about semi-automatic firearms without using the term “semi-automatic?”

  11. As to the armed janitors, I tentatively think this is a good idea. Utah has allowed concealed handgun licensees to conceal carry at school for quite a number of years now, without any problems. I think we need better statistics on crime and accidents involving concealed handgun licensees and more experience with other jurisdictions allowed concealed carry in schools, but from the stats I’ve seen, there’s little reason to believe there’d be large numbers of accidents or any educational disruption, and good reason to think armed school employees would deter or minimize deaths resulting from mass school shooters.

    Personally, I tend to favor strict nationwide gun control. But, that’s neither legally (2nd amendment as interpreted by the Supreme Court) or politically possible. Thus, given the current state of affairs, armed good guys seems like the least bad option.

  12. Armed guards haven’t stopped school shootings in the past why do we expect them to do so in the future. Americans are easily freightened and easily manipulated. More guns more gun violence and more gun accidents. The NRA doesn’t care about kids, people

  13. Mickey, it is true that handguns, not semi-assault rifles, are the cause of most gun deaths in the United States, even with suicide removed from the tally. But I think you need to determine the focus of the current situation…is it to stop all gun violence or prevent massacres? I’d submit the goal is to prevent massacres and, the unfortunate truth in that scenario, is that the weapon of choice for those slayings are assault weapons. Makes sense, the purpose of an assault weapon is to kill large numbers of people quickly.

    And the charts you hyperlinked are grossly misleading. For example, The UK homicide chart goes back to the late 1960’s in order to show a variation because the number has only risen by two (according to the chart) since the latest weapons law. When you only have a few gun related homicides a year, an increase of a few murders makes a huge difference. But raw numbers say nothing. How many of those were gang on gang? How many massacres? How many innocents were gunned down in a movie theater or a mall? How many politicians shot while giving a speech? How many students were shot at secondary schools or a university?

    Let’s see those charts and then compare.

    As for the worst chart, DC, you see something interesting. First, the early 1990’s was the onset of the crack epidemic in DC and increased homicides resulted.. After urban renewal projects pushed crack out of the neighborhoods, the murder rate steadily declined. But that’s not as important as what the chart represents. The chart shows the weakness of relying solely on state laws to regulate guns. In several reports by the ATF, the guns used in most of the DC murders were purchased in neighboring states that had less stringent gun laws.

    So that DC chart is not an argument for less gun control, rather for a federal law that makes gun availability consistent from state to state. A person will buy the gun that is easy to get…that is why you don’t see that many machine guns on the street. The process to acquire one is insanely long and requires having to register with the ATF, FBI, etc. What that shows, to me, is that if a gun is too difficult to obtain, people won’t purchase it. Where I live, gun laws are strict but those folks who want assault rifles just need to cross a bridge and get one.

    And don’t be fooled, I’m pro gun. But there is no reason for the NRA or gun enthusiasts to defend the need to own an assault rifle. You can’t use them for self defense. You can’t use them to hunt. I’d be fine with them only being used and stored at gun ranges, but to have them in circulation is ridiculous. The slippery slope argument is absurd…when limits were placed on speech we did not lose our right to free speech. Placing limits on guns will not remove our right to own a gun, it’s about time people got the hint and realized that.

  14. Well at least their arming the most intelligent people in the school. talk about idiots, not the janitors the school district.

  15. All that needs to be done is install perimeter fences with security cameras. During school hours have one entrance and exit and have it patrolled. one trained and armed security guard.

  16. J.H. armed guards have stopped these assasins the problem is the time it takes to get to the scene. With someone on the school grounds and alerted by security cameras there is a good chance of stopping the massacre before it starts.

  17. Funny Illustration! I agree with AY-noone is talking about using police officers to protect our schools only because our cheap-non-caring federal government doesn’t want to pay for it. How many local police officers have to be put out of a job due to layoffs or children have to die for the feds act in good faith? Arming Janitors!?!?!? Are you kidding? When I was coming up in the school system, some of the janitors smelled like they were drinking (not talking about pepsi or coke), flirting with the highschool students (some were doing more than flirting), and smelled like they were smoking more than just a pack of luckystrikes.

  18. I came across this interesting article in my readings:

    Warning: It starts off as a rant because the author is fed up with what he perceives as a misguided national conversation. Just the first two sentences, though.


    It does not look at the tragedies with the focus on the firearm- but on the individual- more specifically the medications they were on.

    It is a well thought out piece, you science and number people ought to get a good think out of it.

  19. I agree with those who assert that Americans are easily frightened. But I will not be frightened by those who assert that more guns means more deaths.

  20. “Columbine High School had an armed guard, Virginia Tech had several. Ft. Hood had plenty of armed personnel…didn’t change anything.” Accepting that as true, it doesn’t show that armed guards (or others) haven’t prevented deaths in other places. One does not have to search too far to see that there have been instances where a killer’s murder spree has been stopped by someone with a gun.

  21. mahtso,
    Yes, if you search long enough, you can find almost anything. Usually the person with a gun that stops a killer’s murder spree, is a police officer.

    We’re not putting more guns in the schools, unless they’re in the custody of police officers.
    We have too many fools carrying guns, not too few.

    The nation is fed-up with NRA-financed distribution of military-style weapons of mass murder to psychos and criminals. Any decent organization would be asking “How can we help to stop gun violence?” rather than “We won’t tolerate anyone restricting our macho toys.” The NRA leadership are simply not decent human beings.

  22. If this isn’t the single stupidest idea conservatives have come up with, it’s at least highly seeded. Does anyone remember the janitors in their schools? There’s almost always a reason these guys are janitors and it isn’t for the high pay and prestige. What if a janitor or teacher or adminstrator actually has a brain and doesn’t want to be armed? What if the janitor has a conviction record or a mental deficiency and isn’t permitted to have a gun?

  23. If these janitors are allowed to conceal carry in public, then why not at school? They’re much more likely to do more good than harm if there were ever an active shooter at their school.

  24. RC the libs want to take the guns away from the law abiding people, because the crooks and nuts won’t give their guns up.

  25. if the janitor is amish does this mean he will be carrying a flintlock?

    bruce @6:24, that’s about the funniest and most truthful thing i’ve seen written yet.

    HenMan, that’s why there are no mass school shootings in miami.

  26. “It takes a lot for the NRA to shock. But this is just beyond disgusting. The NRA has launched a new ad campaign calling President Obama a ‘hypocrite’ for allowing armed Secret Service agents to protect his school aged daughters.

    There are so many vile things about this ad. But one thing to note is the ad is really only designed to appeal to people who have a deep – really deep – animosity toward the President. The sort of people who don’t think he and his daughters should be in the White House and wish him the sort of ill citizens should never wish upon a freely elected head of state.

    Mark Glaze, director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns tells TPM: “At some point the NRA’s Washington lobbyists may realize that this kind of thing is making them irrelevant. It does nothing but offend the reasonable people who make up the bulk of their country – and the bulk of their own membership.”

    The White House is declining comment on the ad.” Talking Points Memo

  27. I wouldn’t be to hard on janitors in particular.
    Even NYPD cops are a danger to anyone near the intended target
    Nine bystanders injured by NYPD

    Presumably these cops had more than 2 days training.

    Handguns – and particularly small conceal-carry funs – are really for close-up use.
    The NYPD cops in the incident were about the 10 feet range.

    If I were going to carry out a massacre and believed I would be met with armed gueards/janitors/teachers, I would kill them first and then settle down to the main business.
    An armed guard at a single gate would be easy. I would just kill him from a distance with my rifle.

    I would most likely get a teacher coming down a corridor well before they could get close enough to shoot me.
    I would have planned my actions taking expected reactions into account.

    The problem would not be the nature of the response in the school.
    The problem would be me having guns.

  28. What’s all the fuss about? President Obama and his team of administrators know what’s best for our nation, our states, our cities, our societies, our families, and all the details of our lives. President Obama really cares about our children, unlike you second amendment freaks, who blindly cling to an outmoded constitution that has no applicability to the exigencies of today’s busy lifestyles.

    I look forward to the day when science advances to the point that an electronic device can be permanently implanted into the brain of every person in the U.S. so that any potential thoughts about any potentially violent act (or any thoughts deemed potentially improper by the existing administration) can be promptly monitored for immediate governmental administrative action.

    Meanwhile, President Obama must control guns that pose a clear and present danger to our children, and to our children’s children. We must stop civilians from holding guns. If you don’t want to do it for your own safety and peace of mind, at least support it for your children’s sake. I have great faith in the leadership of our President and in his sagacity and judgment on these matters, and I urge you to support him in all of his efforts.

    In time, we will not only embrace gun control, but also control of other deadly weapons, such as rope, staircases, and eyeglasses, as can be seen in action in this video clip:

  29. ‘Firearms instructor’ hired as school guard leaves handgun in student bathroom
    By David Edwards
    Friday, January 18, 2013

    A prosecutor in Lapeer, Michigan says, “No harm, no foul,” after a charter school took the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) advice and hired a armed security guard who promptly left his handgun unattended in a student bathroom.

    Chatfield School co-directors Matt Young and Bill Kraly announced last week that they had hired retired Lapeer County Sheriff’s Dept. firearms instructor Clark Arnold as a security guard in response to the December mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

    “It’s a tremendous asset to the safety of our students,” Young told WNEM in a report that aired on Tuesday.

    But by Wednesday, the school had admitted to The Flint Journal that the retired firearms instructor had made a “made a breach in security protocol” and left his unloaded handgun unattended in the school restroom “for a few moments.”

    “The school has put additional security procedures in place that follow local law enforcement practices and guidelines,” a statement from Young said. “At no time was any student involved in this breach of protocol. We will continue to work on improving school security.”

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