Two items of interest here in Tennessee:
Via Daily Caller:
A Tennessee state senator has introduced a bill that would abolish diversity programs, ban diversity officers and end preference based on race, ethnicity and gender on college campuses in the Volunteer State.
Republican Jim Summerville calls his slate of legislation the “Civil Rights Initiative of 2013,” reports Knoxville NBC affiliate WBIR-TV. In addition to forbidding diversity preference programs, the proposal would prohibit the state from keeping any statistics based on race, gender or ethnicity, or using those criteria for hiring, except as mandated by federal law.
“It’s a little demeaning, I think, to classify people in those categories,” Summerville told WBIR. “They might wonder ‘Am I here because I’m any good or am I here to fill a quota?’ So I think it’s time to let this go.”
As has been seen following other mass shootings, there’s a strong segment of the gun rights lobby that says the answer to events like the one in Newtown is more guns in more places. But they’ve said the recent massacre shows how important it is to put guns into elementary schools, where even gun-friendly states like Tennessee don’t currently allow them.
State Sen. Frank Niceley (R) told TPM on Tuesday he believes it’s time for that to change. He plans to introduce legislation in the next session, which begins Jan. 8, that will require all schools to have an armed staff member of some kind. The current language of the bill — which is in its early form — would allow for either a so-called “resource officer” (essentially an armed police officer, the kind which most Tennessee high schools have already) or an armed member of the faculty or staff in every school in the state. The choice would allow schools that can’t afford a resource officer to fulfill the requirement without having to pay for anything beyond the cost of the training and, presumably, the weapon. But Niceley said schools should use the wiggle room to train and keep on hand armed staff not in uniform.
That’s the best way to protect students, he said. (read it all)