After at least 10 people were shot and killed at a school in Santa Fe, Texas, the state’s lieutenant governor said the problem may have been that there were too many entrances and exits at the building for guards to monitor ― as opposed to, say, easy access to guns.
The attack, which left 10 others wounded, took place on Friday morning at Santa Fe High School. At a press conference later that day, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said that in order to prevent other such shootings, officials may have to “look at the design of our schools.”
“There are too many entrances and too many exits to our 8,000 campuses in Texas. There aren’t enough people to put a guard at every entrance and exit,” he said, adding that limiting entrances to “one or two” could allow law enforcement to look at everyone who enters.
“Had there been one single entrance possibly for every student, maybe he would have been stopped,” Patrick said, referring to the suspected shooter, who, he added, was wearing a long coat with a shotgun under it on a 90-degree day.
“We’re going to have to be creative. We’re going to have to think out of the box,” he continued, suggesting that schools might change their start times so not all students arrive at once. Referring to discussions on mass shootings that Gov. Greg Abbott has requested, Patrick said, “That’s why the governor is calling for the roundtable, to discuss every option.”
People on Twitter were quick to remark that having only one exit in a building holding about 1,500 students plus teachers and other staffers might not be so safe ― for instance, by making it harder for people to get out in the event of a fire or shooting.
People also called out Patrick ― a staunch defender of open-carry laws and fewer gun regulations ― for saying “out of the box” solutions were needed, as opposed to gun control legislation.
HuffPost reached out to Patrick’s office for comment but did not immediately get a response.
This was the 22nd school shooting in the U.S. so far this year ― an average of more than one per week.