Fox News Guest Suggests 'Ballistic Blankets' To Stop Children Getting Shot

A former FBI agent has appeared on Fox News suggesting that parents and schools should invest in "ballistic blankets" and other equipment to keep their children safe.

Maureen O'Connell's comments followed the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, south Texas. Twenty-one people—19 children and two adults—were killed in the attack on Tuesday. The gunman, identified as 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was later shot and killed by law enforcement.

O'Connell told Fox's Special Report host Bret Baier: "This is just beyond shocking. I would like to see a national push. Instead of parents buying their kids all these tools and toys and games, invest in the classroom to make it safer.

"There are companies out there that will do that, they will come out and do threat assessment of the whole school. They will say, 'This is an area of vulnerability you might want to address and this is how we would address it.'"

A video of O'Connell's comments has gone viral on Twitter, with close to 250,000 views.

She went on to suggest what schools could do to help keep children safe during an active shooter situation.

"They have blankets you can put up on the wall that are colorful and beautiful, but they are ballistic blankets. There are ways to obscure the classroom windows so that the shooter can't have target acquisition.

"There are just a million tools out there and we have been banging this drum for years. Let's start investing in our kids and the safety of our children."

Newsweek has contacted Fox News for comment.

The killings in Uvalde—the most deadly school shooting since the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook in Newtown, Connecticut—have reignited the debate over how to prevent these tragedies.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz and the state's attorney general Ken Paxton have suggested placing more armed officers in schools or giving teachers guns.

Speaking on Newsmax, Paxton said schools could make it "more difficult for people even to get in that point of entry," by having "teachers and other administrators who have gone through training and who are armed."

He added: "First responders typically can't get there in time to prevent a shooting. It's just not possible unless they have a police officer on camera on every campus, which for a lot of these schools is almost impossible.

Paxton also spoke in favor of arming teachers during an interview on Fox News.

Cruz has proposed stationing more armed law enforcement officers at schools, saying this would be more effective than tightening gun control laws.

"We know from past experience that the most effective tool for keeping kids safe is armed law enforcement on the campus," the Republican senator told reporters.

"When there's a murder of this kind, you see politicians try to politicize it. You see Democrats and a lot of folks in the media whose immediate solution is to try to restrict the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens," Cruz added. "That doesn't work."

Cruz and Paxton have been contacted for comment.

Colion Noir, a gun-rights activist, spoke to Fox News' Tucker Carlson on Tuesday night about prevention.

"It is time to have an actual conversation and understand that, at the end of the day, anyone that decides to do something like this, should immediately know that attacking a school is a death sentence for them," Noir said.

"It shouldn't even be an option in their mind because our schools are so hardened. I can only imagine if Joe Biden had younger kids and they went to a certain school, do you know how hard it would be to attack that school?

"These kids are the most precious things we have, so not putting them in the position of the most protected is kind of odd to me."

Newsweek has contacted Noir for comment.

President Biden said in a speech on Tuesday night that it was "time to turn this pain into action," adding that "we have to have the courage to stand up" to the gun manufacturing industry.

School kids
Stock image of children running into school. The Uvalde killings have reignited the debate over how to prevent school shootings. Getty