You must have heard the phrase, “You do not fight fire with fire”. The phrase is taken from Shakespeare’s play King John 1595. The line means, not to respond to an attack by using a similar method as one’s attacker.
The reason why I brought this up is due to a fact that caused a stir on social media after the present U.S President Mr. Donald Trump made a statement regarding protective issues on Wednesday at a town hall on account of the Florida shooting that took place on 14th Feb. 2018.
Tweets by the POTUS on 22nd Feb. 2018.
….History shows that a school shooting lasts, on average, 3 minutes. It takes police & first responders approximately 5 to 8 minutes to get to site of crime. Highly trained, gun adept, teachers/coaches would solve the problem instantly, before police arrive. GREAT DETERRENT!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 22, 2018
While the discussion was going on in the White House Trump asked if anyone was in favor of the idea of arming school teachers as a protective measure, only a few agreed, but when he asked again how many were against it, the majority of the people in the room agreed to disagree with the whole idea.
….If a potential “sicko shooter” knows that a school has a large number of very weapons talented teachers (and others) who will be instantly shooting, the sicko will NEVER attack that school. Cowards won’t go there…problem solved. Must be offensive, defense alone won’t work!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 22, 2018
After this situation was widespread, teachers across the country spoke out with ideas that they’d rather be armed with than guns.
The whole idea of creating a voice for the teachers to stand together as one and fight this soul-breaking incident was started by two teachers, Brittany Wheaton and Olivia Bertels. They met on social media when Wheaton reached out to Bartels on the issue of being against to putting more guns in schools. They created the idea of spreading this message and awareness and came up with the #armmewith movement.
Brittany Wheaton 27, a graduate of Bowling Green State University, Ohio.
Wheaton worked at Penta previously, a vocational Highschool in Ohio, she is now currently pursuing a doctorate in curriculum and instruction. She has over 58k followers on her Instagram account.
“Since teachers are the individuals in the classroom when it happens, I like to think we know what’s best for our students,” Wheaton said.
She also added, “If you’re an educator, you know that [more guns] is not a solution to stopping the violence that’s happening in our schools. Knowing that, I decided to start the #armmewith movement, where ACTUAL teachers give their solutions to what’s happening.”
#armmewith the resources and funding needed to help students experiencing mental health issues, NOT guns. Teachers, now (more than ever) is the time to take and stand and say we will not accept another one of our students being lost to another senseless school shooting. We have to strive for MORE. Our students deserve it. Call, write, march… do whatever you can to show enough is enough— we NEED stronger gun laws, we NEED funding for mental health issues, we NEED our students to L I V E so they can change the future of this country. #resist #standup #guncontrol #enoughisenough #notonemore #gunsafety #schoolsafety #mentalhealth #teachertribe #iteachtoo #teachersmatter
Olivia Bertels, 27, Post Graduate of The Universty of Kansas.
Bertels is currently working as a 6th and 7th Grade English Teacher at BASEHOR-LINWOOD USD 458. She has over 21k followers on her Instagram account.
Bertel says, “There is an incredible, robust community of teachers on social media who work together to share ideas, [and] support one another.”
The #armmewith movement soon spread everywhere on social media which prompted teachers across the nation to join the movement.
Social-emotional learning is just as important as academic learning! #armmewith time in my day and space in my curriculum to encourage and support the development of the WHOLE child. To do this effectively we also need to limit class sizes and caseloads, and increase essential support staff to ensure each child receives the attention he/she needs and deserves.
This teacher Instagram community is amazing! I am so proud to stand beside my fellow teachers who will fight to ensure that guns are not placed in the hands of teachers. Our schools lack counselors, restorative justice professionals, psychologist and many other necessary positions due to the lack of funding. #armmewith more resources, professionals and time to spend with my students so that I can actually build meaningful relationships♥️
All of them posted pictures with the hashtag for the need of development and books that will teach the students to be alert.
The day teachers are asked to carry guns in the classroom is the day I leave my dream job I’ve had since I was 16 years old. I don’t want to take away guns. I want control on them. Mandatory safety courses, thorough background checks, limit purchases of fire arms at one time, licenses and permits. There’s NO NEED FOR A 19 YEAR OLD TO HAVE AN AR-15. #armmewith #enoughisenough #schoolsafetynow #notonemore
And some, for mental therapy and healthcare which is an important aspect of dealing with student’s psychology.
I just read a nytimes alert that said the president wants to arm teachers and give bonuses to specially trained ones. I'm furious. How about give bonuses to teachers who use their nights and weekends to go above and beyond? How about using that money to buy basic supplies that they usually buy on their own dime? Or to pay therapists and counselors so that every student has access? I'm fed up and I'm tired. My students are my life and I love them so much that my heart feels like it's going to burst. Let's figure out sensible gun laws now so that their generation doesn't have to. #armmewith #iteachtoo #teachersofinstagram #teachersofinstagram
This is a movement that I can 100% get on board with. If you’ve heard me talk about my class size the last couple years, you will not be surprised that this is one of my hot button issues. In the mind of children, negative attention is still attention, and I believe that as we raise class sizes, overload teachers, and cut support, we will continue to see major behavioral, social, and emotional issues rise to unparalleled levels. I think that reaching out to educators about ways that we can be PROactive, not reactive, in the education world to reduce violence of any kind is absolutely one of the best places to start making a change! . . . . . #ArmMeWith #RealTalk #IssuesInEducation #iTeach2nd #iTeach3rd #TeacherLife #TeachersOfInstagram #TeacherCommunity #TargetTeachers
And the movement continued on Twitter as well.
— Michelle Horsham (@MichelleHorsham) February 21, 2018
— Allie Weber (@MissMaryAllie) February 21, 2018
You want to arm me? Arm me with enough time and manageable class sizes so I can build meaningful relationships with my students. Arm with with quality resources to support students socially and emotionally. #ArmMeWith #NotOneMore pic.twitter.com/10PQ6bex9l
— Ashley Zatt (@ALGravelle13) February 21, 2018
It’s all about the motivation and support which are the basic necessities.
#ArmMeWith support, so that I can educate ALL of my students, no matter their level, and help them achieve their goals. Do NOT arm me with a gun. I need SUPPORT from society, our community, & our politicians to help every child achieve goals. Guns have no place in education. pic.twitter.com/tv0QtS8x9Y
— Megan Glidden (@msgliddenves) February 21, 2018
It isn’t enough to teach our children how to read. They need to learn how to deal with the complex emotions facing them + have access to mental health services. We need to remove the stigma – not just for our students/their families, but ourselves too. #ArmMeWith this, not a gun. pic.twitter.com/YEEN8htZPW
— Sarah Plum(itallo) (@sarahplumitallo) February 21, 2018
I usually stay out of political topics but I feel very passionate about this. Don't arm me with weapons, arm my students with services that help them cope, services that when needed are there, relationships that keep them accountable #armmewith pic.twitter.com/bVER6g2kXM
— The Panko Post (@thepankopost) February 21, 2018
“An eye for an eye leaves everyone blind”, we understand Trump’s idea of stating that defense mechanism might be of some help, but it’s a school we’re talking about. An institution where children are offered education. The moment an armed force is subjugated in such a platform, the innocence and safety of the premises will be buried forever. Instead of accepting an arm protection, we must all stand together and help the needs who lack in social awareness and the danger of weaponry.