Duval County Public School Board member Jason Fischer proposed on Tuesday that students should be allowed to defend themselves when attacked at school, which other school board members compared to Florida’s "Stand Your Ground" law.
“Right now, we have a problem with some kids are getting punished at the same degree [as the aggressor] which should never happen,” Fischer stated. “We should be here to protect the victims, but we should also empower those victims to defend themselves. We all have a right to self-preservation.”
Fischer didn't use the phrase “Stand Your Ground,” and says he would not support students using guns or deadly force, reports The Florida Times-Union.
However, other school board members claimed Fischer was referring to the "Stand Your Ground" law. Not one board member gave any support to Fischer's proposal, which would revise the district’s Code of Student Conduct.
Duval County School Superintendent Nikolai Vitti would support changing the code in order to recognize which student was the aggressor and which was the victim.
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“In our schools, we can’t teach that violence is the right approach… We also can’t allow victims to be unprotected,” Vitti stated. “There has to be differentiation between responding to being attacked, being excessive in the response or simply hitting back. There has to be a consequence for that.”
Fischer tried to distance his proposal from 'Stand Your Ground" during a recent interview (video below).
"You know, I think that's a charged phrase," Fischer told First Coast News. "What I'd say is, it's really about protecting the right of self-defense and making sure our children aren't being punished for stopping their attacker."
"This has nothing to do with any kind of firearms or weapons," added Fischer. "I would say in reasonable self-defense, if you use force to stop them but you continue on and become an attacker, you are no longer defending yourself you are no longer the victim."