The topic of guns is a popular issue these days. When President Obama won the election, people began frantically buying firearms out of fear of that there would be further restriction of gun ownership. Then weapons became an even more popular topic after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School occurred. So, suffice it to say, Americans have been thinking about guns a lot lately.
With all of the school shootings, and other crimes that occur on school campuses, people have been coming up with ways to try to prevent these crimes from occurring. There is a proposal that is being discussed regarding students having the ability to carry concealed weapons on campus after they have been licensed by the state, passed criminal background checks, and undergone training. This idea is gaining some traction around the United States and is currently undergoing legislative debates in Texas and Florida. Some private colleges, like Liberty University, already allow students to carry under certain restrictions.
Police officers often engage in the argument against concealed carry on campus. If, for example, a situation occurred where the campus police were called, they would rush in to try to prevent the continuation of a crime. But if they were to discover a person with a weapon shooting at another person with a weapon, they may not be able to tell who is committing the crime versus who is attempting to stop it. This could lead to a mistake, and an innocent person could potentially get killed. Because of this, while many policemen do recognize the importance of the fast response that concealed carry provides, some express concern about the difficulty it could cause in identifying the good versus the bad guys in an active situation.
The main idea behind concealed carry is that the victims could deter and prevent the crime themselves, instead of needing to wait the 5-15 minutes it would take for the police to arrive at the scene and take care of it, when the crime will likely have already been committed. Sexual assaults on campus are the biggest problem. In many of these situations, the cops are never even called, and there is no chance for the woman to defend herself without a weapon. In one case, a woman was raped in the parking garage of the police department, only a few feet from an emergency callbox. This is obviously a huge problem. If this woman, who was licensed to carry, had been permitted by the university to carry her weapon, she would have been able to defend herself and prevent the attack from happening. Many victims of sexual assault are now speaking out and asking for colleges to give concealed permit holders the ability to carry a weapon on campus because they believe that it would have helped them in their previous situations. While some may think that allowing people to carry weapons will increase the chances of sexual assault, many of the women who have been victimized are stating that they wish they had had a way to protect themselves.
As of right now, Regent does not allow weapons of any type on campus. However, given the changes that are trending at the national level, maybe Regent will become one of the next schools to allow lawful concealed carry on campus. Do you think that those who hold valid concealed carry permits should be allowed to carry on a college campus, or should such places remain gun-free zones? Comment below and let us know what you think.