Retiring Republican Rep. Ron Paul pushed back Monday against the National Rifle Association's call for installing armed officers in every school, warning that the move could create a TSA-style maze of checkpoints and surveillance cameras -- with limited effect.
"School shootings, no matter how horrific, do not justify creating an Orwellian surveillance state in America," Paul said in a written statement.
The congressman, among the most libertarian-leaning on the Hill, is the first Republican in Congress to forcefully oppose the NRA's proposal. NRA head Wayne LaPierre on Friday urged federal funding to overhaul America's school security, a plan that would include posting a guard in every school.
LaPierre argued that, in the wake of the Connecticut mass murders, it only makes sense to protect students the same way the country protects banks and elected leaders -- with armed security.
"The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," he said.
But Paul -- who said he agrees that "more guns equals less crime" and "private gun ownership prevents many shootings" -- nevertheless chided the NRA for its plan, describing it as a government solution that could infringe on liberty.
"Do we really want to live in a world of police checkpoints, surveillance cameras, metal detectors, X-ray scanners and warrantless physical searches? We see this culture in our airports: witness the shabby spectacle of once proud, happy Americans shuffling through long lines while uniformed TSA agents bark orders. This is the world of government provided 'security,' a world far too many Americans now seem to accept or even endorse," Paul said. Read more at Fox News