Editorial: gun range at high school
At first blush, it seems like a bad idea to have a gun range in a high school. But we have to admit that reaction comes more from a fear of what might happen rather than what has happened with the range at Carson High School.
The school board is pondering that very issue, because potential liability is the main concern when it considers prohibiting outside groups from using the range.
The district’s insurance company is understandably skittish about the gun range. After all, it deals in “what ifs” as a business.
But we wouldn’t get very far as a society if we tried to rule out every possible risk in the world, and we have to pay a price for that kind of freedom. It’s the same kind of nervousness that we rail against when we criticize schools for doing away with playground swings because, yes, children can get hurt.
So it seems to us there is a way to compromise, allowing the gun range to remain at the high school while setting up strict restrictions on the users. In the long run, we would suggest, the Carson Rifle and Pistol Club should start planning for a range that isn’t in a school. But that doesn’t do much good in the meantime.
In addition to requiring outside groups to have insurance, specific guidelines are needed on qualification, instruction, safety record and supervision. The Carson Rifle and Pistol Club, with no mishaps on its record, seems to have no problem running an exemplary operation.
If it wants, the school board can write its restrictions to preclude everybody but the groups that use it now. If somebody else wants to use it, let them challenge the rules.
Gun safety and proper use of weapons are legitimate lessons to be learned – as appropriate, we suppose, as football or sex education. As a state with lenient gun laws and a proliferation of weapons, Nevada should also be in the forefront of gun training.
If we believe that education is the key to understanding and a strength of a community, then it’s hard to exclude gun safety.