Carnes: If you’re arming teachers, maybe it’s time for ski instructors to pack heat, too (column)
February 26, 2018
"I believe we should seriously consider having ski instructors carry handguns while on duty."
(Quick head bobble.)
I'm sorry, what?
"Ski instructors are teachers, right?"
Um, yes, yes they are, if you insist upon using a direct interpretation of the word.
"We have a lot more guests on the mountain each day than we have kids in local schools, so … I'm just sayin'."
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You're just saying what, exactly?
"The more potential victims there are, the higher the probability that some nut will go on a shooting spree."
OK. Your point?
"President Donald Trump says we should consider arming teachers 'cuz that would deter a bad student from bringing a gun to school, so if we armed ski instructors, we wouldn't have to worry about bad guests bringing guns on the ski mountain."
Wait, you're serious?
"D–n straight. If Trump and the NRA say teachers packing heat is a way to stop the senseless violence in American schools, then I'm all for our ski teachers doing the same to protect our guests. Of course, this would include ski patrol and those information people in the red coats, as well."
The only thing that stops a snowboarder with a gun is a skier with a gun, or something along those lines?
"Oh, now you're just being a jack–s."
You say tomato, I say … anyway, what if an instructor mistakes a ski pole for a rifle during a lift line argument and kills a guest? I suppose we could just spin it to the media as someone hiring 'crisis skiers' to milk the tragedy.
"Let me guess, you're a tree-hugging socialist liberal who wants to disarm the country so the government can take over and strip all of our rights from the Constitution."
Wow, that escalated quickly. No, I'm just a human being with an average level of decency and common sense. And sorry to burst your conspiratorial bubble, but the government is already "in charge" in a democracy (or a constitutional republic, for those popping a forehead vein at the word democracy). We elect them to certain positions to deal with day-to-day governmental issues, so theoretically we the people are in charge, but we elect them to do the heavy legislative lifting.
"So you're more than willing to just roll over and let the government control everything like a good little socialist?"
How in the world you interpret that from what I just said will forever remain one of mankind's greatest mysteries.
"Look, gun-free ski mountains are an open-season invitation to gun nuts, regardless of whether they're skiers or snowboarders. We should leave it up to the ski company, of course, but they could pay extra bonuses for those packing the heat. And following Florida's lead, I think we should also put 'In God We Trust' signs on every lift tower."
Which god? No, never mind, let's not go there today. Couldn't installing X-ray machines in every lift line solve the issue?
"That's just stupid, and think of the costs. Who would pay for all those machines?"
I suppose the same people who would pay for the training and arming of all the ski instructors. Lift tickets would probably be in the $500 range, but hey, we'd be the safest ski area around.
Of course, we'd also be the emptiest, as well.
"Huh? Oh, now you're just making the entire idea seem idiotic."
Didn't need any of my help there, Bubba.
Richard Carnes, of Edwards, writes weekly. He can be reached at email@example.com.