Nearly 60% of likely voters say they believe that arming properly trained teachers can make schools a safer place, according to a poll published Wednesday by the Trafalgar Group.
The survey, conducted in conjunction with the Convention of States Action (COSA) among 1,091 likely U.S. voters May 25-29, comes in the aftermath of a mass shooting an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that left 21 dead, including 19 children.
In total, 57.5% of likely voters said they believed properly trained teachers armed with guns would make schools safer, including 62% of adults aged 18 to 24.
Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has called for arming educators in the wake of the shooting.
"We can't stop bad people from doing bad things. We can potentially arm and prepare and train teachers and other administrators to respond quickly," Paxton said during an appearance on Fox News. Former President Donald Trump at this year's NRA convention Friday also called for "highly trained teachers to safely and discreetly conceal carry" firearms in school.
National Education Association President Becky Pringle told the Guardian that bringing more guns into schools "makes schools more dangerous and does nothing to shield our students and educators from gun violence.
"We need fewer guns in schools, not more," she said. "Teachers should be teaching, not acting as armed security guards."
COSA President Mark Meckler said school shootings wouldn't be stopped by gun control laws.
"They are going to be stopped by a variety of fairly simple on-site measures, including arming law-abiding citizens — in this case, specifically, teachers — and empowering them to protect our children, schools, and communities," he said.
"A majority of voters see this clearly, despite the relentless propaganda by people who want to confiscate the guns of law-abiding citizens."
"Self-defense is a bedrock of this Republic and our Constitution. The founders were clear that defending those we love is the responsibility of the citizen first. So many deaths have been prevented by armed citizens, so why would we question the voluntary training and arming of teachers to protect those we love and care for the most?" he added.
The poll was conducted May 25-29 a 2.9 % margin of error.
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