People who legally own guns ought to be able to carry them into schools, in the opinion of a state legislator who represents Webster County.
State Rep. Tom Shaw, R-Laurens, said he will introduce a bill that would repeal laws banning guns in and around schools. He said he plans to submit that bill when the Legislature convenes next week.
''I want those who have concealed carry permits to be able to legally carry their firearms on school grounds in an effort to deter any future school shootings,'' Shaw said.
He said he believes it makes no sense to stop law-abiding gun owners from having their weapons with them at a school.
''Taking the sheep dog out of the pasture doesn't make our lambs any safer from the wolf,'' he said.
The lawmaker said allowing legal gun owners to have their firearms at schools would be an effective deterrent. To support that argument, Shaw cites an Oct. 1, 1997, incident in Pearl, Miss.
On that day, Luke Woodham, then 16, stabbed and bludgeoned his mother to death before heading to Pearl High School with a rifle, according to various media reports, There, he shot and killed two students and wounded seven others.
During the shooting, Assistant Principal Joel Myrick got his .45-caliber pistol from his truck and pointed it at Woodham, preventing him from escaping and detaining him until police arrived.
''What never gets reported is the number of shootings that would have become mass shootings had they not been stopped by an armed citizen,'' Shaw said.