Town Square

Uvalde shooting opens discussion on gun control laws and mental illness

Legal, psychology, school safety experts talk about first and best lines of defense on threats within the school community, and how we need to meet in the middle with second amendment enthusiasts for gun violence prevention.


Flowers are placed on a makeshift memorial in front of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, on May 25, 2022. – The tight-knit Latino community of Uvalde was wracked with grief Wednesday after a teen in body armor marched into the school and killed 19 children and two teachers, in the latest spasm of deadly gun violence in the US. (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP) (Photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images)


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Town Square with Ernie Manouse airs at 3 p.m. CT. Tune in on 88.7FM, listen online or subscribe to the podcast. Join the discussion at 888-486-9677, or @townsquaretalk.

It’s very heartbreaking to learn that the recent shooting in Uvalde is among the deadliest K–12 shootings in the U.S. Also, 27 school shootings have taken place so far this year, and according to NPR‘s “Education Week’s” database, 119 such incidents have taken place since 2018.

Today, we open our show with a live update from the Texas Public Radio newsroom onsite at a news conference in Uvalde, Texas.

As we dive deeper into this conversation, a Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law professor discusses the need for legislative proposals to be tailored to disarm the mentally ill.

Also, a psychologist and director from the Center for Violence Prevention at UTMB talks about the expected response from the community how we feel and how to talk to our kids — how to channel the feelings of desperation.

Additionally, one of the nation's leading school safety experts with more than 30 years of front-line public and private urban, suburban, and rural school security experience weighs in on human threat being a common factor.

Will we see a change in gun legislation in Congress soon? Our callers share their thoughts and questions.


Bri Kirkham

  • Digital Editor for Texas Public Radio

Dr. Jeff Temple

  • Director of the Center for Violence Prevention and psychologist at UTMB

Kenneth S. Trump

  • President of National School Safety and Security Services
  • Author of – Practical School Security: Basic Guidelines for Safe and Secure Schools

Professor Shaundra Kellam Lewis

  • Texas Southern University School of Law
  • Wrote the lead article "Crossfire on Compulsory Campus Carry Laws–When the First and Second Amendments Collide"


Town Square with Ernie Manouse is a gathering space for the community to come together and discuss the day's most important and pressing issues.

Audio from today’s show will be available after 5 p.m. CT. We also offer a free podcast here, on iTunes, and other apps.

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This article is part of the Town Square with Ernie Manouse podcast

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