TAMMY JOBIN COVIL
Connecticut school shooting claims
The stunning and tragic events in Connecticut are rippling through school systems across the United States. What went wrong? How could it happen? How can similar catastrophies be averted?
We went to new New Hanover School Board member Tammy Covil with these questions, to view the puzzling events of Friday through a local perspective.
These are excerpts of my exclusive interview with Ms. Covil on Friday for USA DOT COM:
VS: What was your first reaction upon learning of this horrific mass murder of school children and others at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut?
COVIL: My initial reaction was shock. And when I first saw the report of the number of people killed, I wasn’t sure it was accurate. I was very surprised. As a parent I reacted as any parent would – it was just a heartbreaking situation and my heart goes out to those parents who lost their children, which I could not imagine in any shape or form. Could not imagine how they’re coping at this point. Of course my prayers go out to them. That was my initial reaction. The situation is still fluid, and I’ve been getting reports today on a regular basis, so I don’t think we will have all the information about this tragedy for days yet.
VS: I know your mind must leap forward to consider how a school board can look to forestall a repeat of this horrific occurrence.
VS: I appreciate your cautious attitude, and refusing to jump to conclusions before all the information and evidence is in. You know, there seem to be gun control advocates who feel that the danger is in the weapon, not in the person who wields it. Is that perhaps a somewhat simplistic solution for a complex problem?
COVIL: You’re exactly right. We can’t ever fully control the actions of others. Those who say we should strip the rights of citizens to own a firearm is going to extremes. Criminals do not follow the law. That’s pretty obvious. They’re going to employ whatever means they deem necessary to accomplish their aims. That does not necessarily mean the use of a gun. No guns would not equal no injury or violent death. For example, the terrorist on 9/11. They chose planes as weapons. Of course they were able to commandeer the planes and fly them into buildings. Once they were in the air they had complete control. There are people in this world who are going to attempt things like this, so I would rather see the innocent have the opportunity to defend themselves rather than strip them of their rights. That’s just not the way to go. It’s certainly not constitutional.