While many Americans have panned the volunteer armed guards idea, 64 percent of Americans support the general idea of armed guards in schools, according to the Pew Research Center.
Mr. Arpaio has not wasted time putting his plan into action. Volunteer posse members already patrol 59 schools in the county. He’s trying to get 1,000 more volunteers involved so he can expand the program. Tapping Seagal as well as former “Hulk” actor Lou Ferrigno is one way.
"I believe we should put police officers in school, in uniform, armed," Arpaio said when activating the volunteer posse in early January. "But so far all the politicians do is talk, talk, talk, and so we're out there doing something."
In Saturday’s class, Seagal, according to a press release, was to lead 40 volunteers through four separate school shooting scenarios. Twenty-five teenagers will play the parts of students and up to three of the county’s SWAT team members will play the shooters in mock scenarios. Seagal, best-known for his role in “Above the Law,” is a 7th-dan black belt in Aikido, as well as a reserve deputy in New Orleans, the basis for a reality show called “Steven Seagal: Lawman.”
For a sheriff who has tangled with the US Department of Justice over discrimination charges stemming from his actions on illegal immigrants, one lingering question is whether the exercise is a stunt.