During emergency drills at Deer Creek Middle School, teacher David Benke used to tell his students that if anything ever happened, he wanted to be able to "do something about it."
When he saw a man shooting at students as they were leaving the Littleton, Colorado, school on Tuesday, "What was going through my mind," Benke said, "was that I promised."
Benke tackled the gunman, who had shot and wounded two students, and with the help of another teacher and some bus drivers, was able to hold him until police arrived.
"I noticed that he was working a bolt-action rifle," he said. "I noticed that and realized that I had time to get him before he could chamber another round."
I'll bet the gun enthusiasts will ask why wasn't the teacher armed? That would have worked out better, I'm sure they'll say. What I say is, why was a mentally ill man able to walk into a school with his father's gun? If the father's description of the shooter is correct, then everyone who knew him should have known he can't be trusted with guns. Where were they?
The problem is in Colorado, like in many other places, guns are too much a way of life. Gun owners who prevent their friends from driving drunk wouldn't dare suggest they give up their guns. At stake is the sacred right of bearing arms, after all.
I say it's about time the lawful gun owners started to take responsibility for their own. Instead of shrugging their shoulders when one of their group breaks away and does something stupid, they should admit that they messed up again.
Sometimes it seems the pro-gun crowd want to be a cohesive group, enjoying strength in their huge numbers, but whenever something like this happens, they insist they have nothing to do with it.
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.