Bulletproof backpacks are not the answer

Bulletproof backpacks are not the answer

Another headline that has been assaulting my inbox since the Sunderland Springs shooting is that a Christian private school in Miami, Florida, has been offering bulletproof panels for student backpacks on the school’s store website. This is not uncommon as this idea has been floated around for years and usually surfaces after a high-profile shooting. In my opinion this is nothing more than fear profiteering. Profitfearing if you will.

While mass shootings have been a hot topic in our society, the odds of being a victim in a school shooting are rather low, especially in a big city like Miami. Not only that, but the backpacks provide minimal protection. The Miami Herald has reported the panels will withstand the force of .44 and .357 bullets, but not those from rifles, you know, the guns of choice by the majority of recent mass shooters. That’s not even mentioning that while this may be a good idea in theory, if it came to an actual active shooter, there’s no predicting how effective the backpack would actually be. That’s not even taking into account that even if you crouch behind the backpack, there’s still enough surface area exposed for a victim to be seriously injured in a shooting. Let’s also not forget that anything that’s bulletproof isn’t really bulletproof. The correct label is bullet resistant. Bulletproof vests also don’t work like you see on TV. If someone in a bulletproof vest is shot at point-blank range they don’t get up a few seconds later to subdue the evildoer. More often than not they’ve suffered broken ribs at the least which can lead to punctured lungs. Bulletproof vests are also not the best protection against knives either, obviously, or they would be called knife-proof vests. Lastly, at $125 apiece, they don’t sound like much protection to me.

More Newtown news, opinion and myth

Adam Lanza

Adam Lanza

Sorry, I didn’t mean to go a week without posting but real life responsibilities and all that. Anyway there hasn’t been a whole lot of worthwhile news out of Newtown in the past week even though the media seems to think that his hair stylist’s opinion is a big deal.

MOTIVE: Some less reputable websites and news outlets have been saying that the reason Adam Lanza went on a rampage was because his mother, Nancy Lanza, was looking to have him committed. According to the New York Daily news that is not the case

The friend also rejected a report that Nancy was planning to have her son committed to a psychiatric facility.

“Nancy was so dedicated to Adam,” the friend said. “She would never send him away. She just couldn’t do that.”

As a matter of fact I think it was quite the opposite to why Lanza went on his rampage. By most Nancy Lanza was actually trying to integrate her son more into the real word by trying to get him to attend a university. Considering how brilliant he supposedly was I doubt he would have a hard time getting into one. However Lanza was more happy being a virtual shut in playing video games in his mom basement. That’s not a rip, he actually played video games in the basement. My thoughts are at this point is that he resented his mother from trying to tear him away from his comfortable surroundings. At least that’s why I think he shot his mother in the face four times. I still have no idea why he would then go on to attack the school. But it does show that like every other school shooter or would be school shooter he’s just another self-entitled loser who blamed everyone else for their own failures.

COPS IN SCHOOLS: I have nothing against the NRA per se but it seems that their president Wayne LaPierre is somewhat out of touch with the real world. Then again I shouldn’t be surprised because LaPierre is just another clueless politician except the office he holds isn’t public. More cops in schools is not only impractical it’s expensive and unfeasible.

As has been mentioned in the press lately there was an armed officer at Columbine, that didn’t stop the shooters. I’ll add to that, there was an armed guard and metal detectors at Red Lake High School. The metal detectors did not stop Jeff Weise and the armed guard ended up dead. In the less publicized Socastee High School shooting the school’s resource officer was the first target and only by the grace of God wasn’t killed. While these measures do help to some degree they are not the be all and end all of preventing school shootings.

BULLETPROOF BACKPACKS FOR KIDS: Seriously? This is the ultimate in fear mongering. First off even though it’s all over the news the odds of your child being killed in a school shooting are like that of winning the lottery, relatively low. Not only that I believe that the backpacks would be mostly ineffective in a real life situation. I mean they may look impressive but let’s look at this realistically.

The backpacks are kind of like taking a self-defense class. It only works if the attacker attacks in such a way that would make your defense the most effective. In the case of the backpacks you have to be face to face with the gunmen. If he is behind you then you’re screwed. Also kids don’t always have their backpacks within arm’s reach throughout the school day. Not to mention that kids are kids. If this think is even relatively heavy they’ll just leave it in their lockers. Again while it may be somewhat protective in reality you’ll just be out a few hundred bucks.

VIDEO GAMES: Again, seriously? Do we have to go through this crap again? The people who believe that violent video games cause kids to kill remind me of the people who refuse to vaccinate their kids. There is absolutely no evidence that video games cause anyone to be violent. Those killers who have played video games are usually already violent to begin with.