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Summary Assignment: “I’m A School Psychologist- And I Think Teachers Should Be Armed” by Michael.W. Goldberg.

Firstly, the article opens with Goldberg declaring he is a school Psychologist and licensed concealed firearm carrier. He states his experience and qualifications and tries to link it with countering mass shootings in school. He carries on saying that only law-abiding, psychologically stable, specially trained staff should carry concealed weapons. Secondly to further support his claims he quotes a 1985 survey by the Justice Department that compares One on One crimes to justify his argument that the majority of would-be school shooters would be frightened from attacking a school if they knew that they would likely be confronted by armed staff. Thirdly Goldberg goes on the cite a survey stating children have died twelve (12) times as much compared to the unintentional firearms deaths of children. Finally, Goldberg ends by appealing to his readers that the deaths of their children in school will continue to loom over their heads if changes are not made. He proposes that school have proactive measures like anti bullying and empathy skilled development but the most effective defense measure in his belief is having carefully screened and highly trained school staff willing to take on the enormous responsibility of protecting their schools in the most competent and professional manner.

Goldberg use of Ethos has failed significantly because ethos is an argument by reputation and authority however he is unsuccessful in convincing his readers. ” I’ve been a School Psychologist for the past 20 years. In the aftermath, I helped to counsel students through the trauma caused by direct exposure to a murderous terrorist act” (Goldberg,2018) Coupled by the later quote “I also have a unique perspective on the school shooting problem, having been both a mental health professional and a licensed concealed firearm carrier for the past 24 years” (Goldberg,2018) In this quotes Goldberg is using direct experience to establish credibility with his audience, he is counting on the readers to value him as Psychologist but at the same time there is nothing mentioning if he is trained in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder therefore he cannot be seen as an expert in the field. Also, he is trying to claim authority by saying he is qualified based on his experience as a licensed concealed firearm carrier. But again, being a licensed concealed firearm carrier does not automatically make u a specialist. Perhaps the information that could have bring more clarity in this situation would have been how highly trained he is (any military background), how often he uses his firearm and how effective it has been. Maybe in the case of self defense he would be able to defend himself but in the case of mass shooting would he be able to do the same? Thus, Goldberg’s use of Ethos is ineffective because he has failed to represent himself and authority in his writing.

Goldberg depends on statistics and logical understanding to influence his readers, however is not effective in making the following points seem reasonable and logical. “A 1985 survey by the Justice department, “Armed Criminal in America — A Survey of

Incarcerated Felons,” found that 54 percent of respondents agreed or strongly agreed with the statement, “A criminal is not going to mess around with a victim he knows is armed with a gun, and 74 percent also agreed that “One reason burglars avoid houses when people are at home is that they fear being shot.” (Goldberg,2018) Coupled by the later quote “It follows that the majority of would-be school shooters would be deterred from attacking a school if they knew that they would likely be confronted by armed staff prior to accomplishing their evil deed “(Goldberg,2018). In these quotes he is using statistics and an analogy to persuade his readers, he is attempting to make a logical conclusion from the statistics, but the statistics only reflect One on One crimes and not Mass Shooting. Therefore, the magnitude of the situation is definitely not the same. The article was written in 2018, but Goldberg quote a survey in 1985 which does not make any sense as it is seen an irrelevant and baseless. Also, the motives of a burglar are quite different with that of a school shooter. A burglar is only concerned about material things (possessions) but a school shooter doesn’t even care for his own life, whether he is shoot and killed or imprison, he is only concerned about getting revenge. Thus, Goldberg’s use of Logos is futile because he is unsuccessful in convincing his readers by appealing to their intellect (common sense).

In conclusion Goldberg has not succeed in using a combination of Ethos and Logos to substantiate his claim of School Teachers should be Armed being a School Psychologist. The information that was provided did not make logical sense and displayed him as having a bias opinion. He has misrepresented himself by not relating more accurate and relevant information to convince his readers. The validity of his claims are not solid and has many loopholes.

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