Sunday, March 9, 2014

Guns, School Boards and Trojan Horses

Dear Los Alamos School Board
Copy, E. Schmidt, LA Monitor, LA Daily Post

Although the front page article in the Sunday, 9 March LA Monitor indicates a proper level of skepticism by the School Board to Mr. Langenbrunner's broad anti-gun proposals, I would like to state that as a taxpayer and voter, I do not think that the School Board is the proper venue for setting public policy that goes far beyond the school board's legitimate areas of expertise or governance, i.e., the controls on and accessibility to firearms within our schools.

The proper place for a discussion about gun control, including ideas on background checks and the role of semiautomatic weapons in public hands, lies with our State and Federal legislatures, not school boards. Should the Board, speaking for our schools, take an overly broad stand on such subjects, one can probably surmise that future school board elections will be contested not on the basis of good education policy, but instead be contested on the basis of gun control platforms.  I don't think I need to remind anyone what a potentially polarizing issue this could be, especially if handled badly. Indeed, using student safety as a Trojan Horse for an attack on firearms rights is not only bad politics, but blatantly dishonest. This is, after all, Los Alamos, not Inner City Chicago.

I also suspect this is another tired attempt to move the annual gun show out of Pueblo Complex. Do we really need to fight that battle of style over substance yet again?

Individual Board members, to be sure, are entitled to state their opinions on the subject of gun control as individual citizens. Indeed, I hope you do so.