Some oppose Salt Lake school security due to feelings

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

I’d like to think no one wants to see a school shooting, but that’s kind of hard to believe considering the way some jump on them to push their agenda. Invariably, it’s gun control over, say, school security.


Yet the truth of the matter is that we’ve seen shootings in schools all over the nation. Gun control laws don’t seem to stop them in the least.

That means school security makes a lot of sense, particularly when you’re talking about non-mass shooting-type incidents in schools.

One of the first things many schools do is install metal detectors.

However, in Salt Lake City, there are concerns, and they’re kind of idiotic concerns at that.

Salt Lake City high schools will begin staffing weapon detectors after fall break. But some parents and a few Salt Lake City School Board members worry the technology may have an outsized impact on students of color.

The Salt Lake City School Board recently approved the use of state funds for a one-year contract with security firm PalAmerican to staff machines at East, West and Highland high schools as well as Horizonte Instruction and Training Center, the district’s alternative high school.

The costly and controversial measure is still uncommon in the majority of the country’s high schools, even as school shootings continue to impact tens of thousands of U.S. students. A number of school safety experts warn that security measures like metal detectors are not a safety guarantee and instead can be detrimental to students — especially those from communities of color.


Now, let’s understand a few things about these concerns. Namely that they’re either backed by data or they’re not.

If they are, then what we have is a case where a certain group or groups are far more likely to try and bring a gun to school. If that’s the case, the metal detectors are working exactly as they’re supposed to and the problem is that these groups are trying to bring firearms on campus.

And no, I’m not willing to accept arguments that unequal outcomes are inherently racist. Sometimes, there are other factors at play where groups of certain racial groups tend to be part of particular subcultures that disfavor following the rules. No one forced them into those subcultures, so the ramifications of their actions is no one’s fault but their own.

In short, if more minorities get caught carrying guns to school, that’s not racism, that’s just reality.

If these concerns aren’t backed by data, then it seems kind of racist to assume that these groups are going to bring guns to school absent any actual data supporting that assertion.

Both, though, boil down to arguing against a front-line strategy to increase school security because of people’s feelings.


Sorry, that’s an idiotic position to try and argue.

Sure, some say they don’t actually stop mass shootings–and, to be fair, I can understand that. After all, a mass shooter isn’t going to be deterred by such a device–and some say they don’t stop anything. I’m skeptical of any claim that they’re useless, though they might be unnecessary at many schools.

Yet if Salt Lake City feels it needs to step up school security, this is an easy and commonsense place to start.

Opposing this based on efficacy is one thing, but opposing it on racial grounds is idiotic no matter how you slice it.

Join the conversation as a VIP Member