Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson Said There Should Be More Guns in Elementary Schools, Which Are a "Target-Rich Environment"

Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

In the wake of the massacre of 27 people, 20 of them children, at a Connecticut elementary school today, Texas officials behaved with remarkable decorum.

Attorney General Greg Abbott, a noted gun lover, sent a muted press release urging parents and students to be vigilant about school safety. And Governor Rick Perry passed along a statement offering condolences to the victims and their families.

So it was up to Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson to turn a national tragedy into an opportunity to say something incredibly insensitive.

"The common denominator for the school shootings in Aurora, Columbine and Virginia Tech is that we have a target-rich environment," Patterson told the Houston Chronicle. "You have a shooter that is completely free to go about his sick fantasy. We need to do what it takes to change that."

OK, so Sandy Hook Elementary isn't a grade school, but a "target-rich environment." Given that schools are apparently so rich with targets, what does Patterson suggest be done?

"Had there been [armed security guard and citizens] in Colorado, at Virginia Tech or now in Connecticut -- someone that could have changed the dynamic and to do so by having a firearm -- there would be fewer lives lost," he told the Chronicle.

It's all clear now. The problem is that we don't have enough guns in schools. Problem solved.

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.


Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.