City council wants more safe feeling

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The issue: Members of the Selma City Council call for metal detectors at City Hall.

Our position: Cooler heads should prevail.

The shooting in Kirkwood, Mo., is a tragedy. Many people were affected and traumatized by it. But it&8217;s not the first time somebody with a gun walked into a government building and pulled the trigger.

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Sadly, it won&8217;t be the last.

Charles &8220;Cookie&8221; Thornton, a contractor, walked into a city council meeting in Kirkwood and killed two police officers and three city workers.

This was not an isolated incident, according to news reports. Thornton had a long history of problems with the city council. Everybody in town knew about the problems.

Sometimes, government meetings get heated. People become passionate about their positions.

But rarely, rarely does anyone resort to shooting.

On Monday, some members of the Selma City Council called for installation of metal detectors at City Hall. Some members of the council say they don&8217;t feel safe during the meetings. Others said they knew of weapons brought into the meetings.

But nobody mentioned names of people with weapons who had entered City Hall during a meeting. Nobody has had a City Hall visitor escorted from a city council meeting recently for violent behavior or for carrying a weapon inside City Hall.

It&8217;s hard to see a justification for the call for a metal detector in the building other than overreaction to the shooting in Kirkwood.

And, if that&8217;s the case, then cooler heads should prevail.