Florida teacher in hot water over guns on campus

In the wake of the shooting in Parkland, Florida, the state enacted a number of measures. Unfortunately, they were mostly gun control laws, though lawmakers did put in place the Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program, which ensures that armed, trained, and vetted personnel are present on every public school campus.

If you’re not a part of the Guardian program, however, you’re not allowed to bring a gun to campus, which is very bad news for a principal at another Parkland school.

A Florida principal faces criminal charges for allegedly leaving a pair of guns in a conference room at a Parkland middle school, three miles from the site of one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history.

Geyler Herrera-Castro, 39, allegedly brought the guns to Somerset Parkland Academy at 8401 University Drive.

Faculty members found the weapons June 2 in a conference room that was easily accessible to students and alerted a Broward County Sheriff’s Office school safety officer, according to police records cited by WPLG Local 10.

The guns and two loaded magazines were inside a soft, zippered pouch with handles. There was no lock on the pouch or trigger lock on the guns, authorities said.

The principal admitted that the guns were hers and said she had them in her car to take to the post office and put in a safe deposit box.

Herrera-Castro claimed another staff member helping her unload her car must have brought the guns in by accident. Unfortunately, video shows she was the only one going to or from her vehicle. There was no other staffer helping her.

That’s bad news for her.

Now, this is making headlines in part because of its proximity to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Had it been on the other side of the state, most people would never hear about it. Yes, it’s illegal under current Florida law and yes, it’s a problem because it did leave a gun unattended where a student might have gained access to it, but it’s not a national-level story.

But it is news, and there’s a reason for that, and one your average anti-gunner isn’t going to like.

It’s news because it’s rare.

Even in states where staff members can carry on campus, it’s extremely rare for guns to be left unattended. While that’s one of the big criticisms of armed school staff, it’s just not something that happens very often. That handful of examples is upheld as evidence, but when you consider the total numbers of schools where staff can be lawfully armed, it’s statistical noise.

Now, that’s not the case here, obviously, and that’s another interesting data point the anti-gunners don’t want to think about.

Yes, Herrera-Castro is facing charges over this, but how many other educators have done similar things and not been caught despite the law?

Laws don’t actually stop people from doing things. At best, they deter them from doing it. If a principal can bring guns onto campus, what’s really stopping someone with nefarious intent from bringing a gun?

Nothing, that’s what.

I don’t know what will happen to Herrera-Castro. I certainly can see grounds for her being fired, at a minimum, but beyond that, who knows? What I do know is that laws barring guns on campuses don’t actually stop guns from ending up on campuses.