Since the Sandy Hook tragedy in December 2012, an increased number of students have been toting bulletproof backpacks to school. But how are teachers supposed to keep themselves safe in the event of a school shooting? Bulletproof whiteboards, of course.
That’s right: Maryland’s Pocomoke City-based Hardwire has developed a hand-held whiteboard that also functions as a bulletproof shield. According to the hardware company, the shield can stop bullets fired from a handgun at pointblank range.
“As teachers are doing their daily lesson plans, it’s in their hands. And if there’s a crisis, it’s in their hands,” said George Tunis, CEO of Pocomoke City-based Hardware. “Teachers are not first responders, but sometimes they’re thrust into that role.”
The whiteboards, which measure 18 by 20 inches and weigh a little less than four pounds, are big enough to cover a teacher’s head and torso (there’s no need for anything bigger—the students, presumably, will be shielding themselves with their bulletproof backpacks). Mr. Tunis said that in the event of a school shooting—five of which have occurred in the past six weeks—teachers could use the whiteboards to protect themselves under emergency services responded.
With the introduction of the bulletproof whiteboards, there is officially an industry of companies looking to cash in on parents’ fear. Bulletblocker, for example, a company that manufactures bulletproof backpacks, also sells “Bulletproof Clipboard Inserts” and “Bulletproof Defender Notebook Folios.”
What’ll be invented tomorrow? Bulletproof glass surrounding every desk? A junior line of Kevlar clothes? Justin Bieber stun guns?
How long before our schools lose all resemblance to places of learning and become full-blown prisons?
If the NRA gets its wish and schools start arming their teachers, the answer would appear to be … soon.