I get it. People read about a school shooting and want to throw money at any idea that increases safety. But not all ideas are worthwhile. Let’s look at Carmel’s proposal to increase taxes by about $50 per person, ostensibly primarily to increase police in the schools.
Last year, there were 35 killings in schools in the US. If Carmel is typical, our share of that would be about .01 deaths based on the number of students here. Let’s assume that you could completely prevent that possibility, which is impossible. Even blanketing schools with police will not stop the first minute of shooting, during which much of the damage occurs.
What would .01 lives be worth? You could say priceless, but we do put values on lives in the US. In the health field, many people think that a year of life is worth about $150,000, which would make a student’s life worth about $10 million. You could argue that this number should be higher, but the Carmel tax would spend 50 times this, $500 million per life saved. Would you vote to increase your federal taxes 10 to 20 times to increase Medicaid and Medicare spending 50 times?
Besides, didn’t I just read that the county is increasing taxes to pay for the 911 system, and doesn’t that free up something like $2.5 million that would otherwise be spent by Carmel and that can now be used on whatever they deem the most important needs for the city?
Daniel Mytelka, Carmel