The spinoffs from the Connecticut school shootings tragedy are multiplying. Example: County Clerk Debbie Door, chief election authority for Franklin County, is thinking about not using schools any more as polling places because mad gunmen have targeted schools for shooting and killing rampages.

Where will it end?

We do not blame the county clerk for looking for other options as voting places. She has safety in mind.

Is her action a forerunner of other moves to end public use of school buildings for safety? Taxpayer money is used to build schools and many districts have opened them up to all kinds of uses other than education. That is as it should be. They are built to be used for public purposes.

What about all of the school activities that are open to the public, such as athletic events, concerts, student plays, fund-raising causes and other functions? Most schools already have varying degrees of security at these events. Is more security warranted?

Where will it end?

We have reached a pathetic state of living in fear when countless security measures have to be taken to protect children and adults because of the violence we have today.

Where will it end?

Nine schools in the county currently are being used as polling places. Some have been used for voting purposes for as long we can remember. Finding other polling places in some locations is no easy task. Another regrettable consequence in moving them is that they may not be as convenient to voters as the schools have been. The day may come when the county will have to provide portable polling places in a few locations. Polling places on wheels? That would be quite an expense.

Door is looking for ideas. Having teacher meetings on election days is an early thought. Children aren’t in school on those days. Will we have to post armed guards at polling places?

It is beginning to be as clear as the cover on your watch that with the freedom to own a gun these days, there is an associated cost. Security is expensive. We need it. We need it more today than when the fast-drawing sheriffs of western lore provided protection. A big difference today is that the criminals and madmen have more sophisticated weapons. And there are more of them!

We feel sorry for the children of today. To live in a society where tragedy lurks even in the classroom is unacceptable. The only answer seems to be to pay for more protection. That will help, but it must be remembered that mad gunmen expect to be killed. They can do considerable damage before their end comes.

Is there no answer to, where will it end?