Perhaps these critics should have done a touch of research before they spoke, In April 2000 as part of his commemoration of the first anniversary of deaths at Columbine High School in his weekly radio speech President Clinton announced $120 million in grants, much of it for a program to place armed police officers in schools.
As the Associated Press reported at the time:
"In our national struggle against youth violence we must not fail our children; our future depends on it," the president said in his weekly radio address.SHHHHH! Please don't tell the liberals that Clinton supported a program very similar to the one presented by NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre today...It might cause their heads to explode...or even worse It might make them to think instead of politicizing.
Parents, teens, teachers, youth workers and others will discuss research that indicates the preteen years set patterns for behavior and success in adulthood. Other subjects will include the risks, challenges and anxieties faced by young people today and what can be done to avoid dangerous or risky behavior.
"We need to talk about safety and security in every house in America," Clinton said.
Republican critics said the federal government is a clumsy middleman in trying to cope with problems that should be addressed locally. They cast doubt on whether the teen conference would accomplish anything, accused Clinton of ignoring media violence and said he should support stiff jail sentences for anyone carrying a firearm in a violent or drug-related crime.
Clinton announced $40 million in grants for 23 school districts that he said have found successful, comprehensive approaches to help troubled young people.
"These districts are bringing school nurses and counselors together to respond to warning signs like depression or bullying," Clinton said. "They are improving classroom security and expanding after-school and mentoring programs."
Clinton also unveiled the $60-million fifth round of funding for "COPS in School," a Justice Department program that helps pay the costs of placing police officers in schools to help make them safer for students and teachers. The money will be used to provide 452 officers in schools in more than 220 communities.
"Already, it has placed 2,200 officers in more than 1,000 communities across our nation, where they are heightening school safety as well as coaching sports and acting as mentors and mediators for kids in need," Clinton said.