Inside Higher Ed: “Grim outlook for colleges opposing guns on campus”

Like most eggheads manning the ramparts beneath academia’s ivory towers, insidehighered.com is not thrilled with the idea of campus carry. To their credit, they see it as inevitable. “It seems almost certain that the [Texas campus carry] bill will move on to the Senate, which approved a similar one last session that later died in the House (Republicans held the majority then, too, though by a much slimmer margin than now). That makes for a grim outlook for colleges opposing guns on campus . . .

And while most continue to lobby against the legislation, experts in campus security and risk management — along with a few, but not most, college leaders contacted by Inside Higher Ed — have recognized the likelihood of passage and are moving on to the next step: figuring out what they’ll do if and when their fear becomes a reality.

And what might that be . . .

[Chancellor of the five-campus Alamo Community Colleges System Bruce] Leslie is already considering questions of training for police, faculty and staff; modifying institutional policies and procedures (though the specifics are unclear at this point, changing the weapons policy is an obvious one); ensuring that people with guns are permit-holders; and protecting the safety of high school students and younger children who often visit Alamo campuses for competitions, dual-credit programs and other events. “There’s just a lot for us to have to think about and we’re just beginning to have those conversations,” Leslie said.

I know! How about they do . . . nothing! Where’s the evidence that there’s been any problems whatsoever re: legally concealed weapons at the 70-plus American college campuses where students and faculty and workers are packing heat? You’d think they were facing an ebola epidemic. Check this:

Utah’s website warns people on the campus that it is “very possible” that they will see someone with a weapon, and they are “encouraged” to call University Police and report the person, whom an officer would then locate to ensure that the gun was being carried legally.

That’s only one example of how concealed carry can drain colleges’ manpower and resources — not to mention affect campus safety. “There’s a slew of challenges,” said Gary Margolis, managing partner at Margolis, Healy & Associates, a firm that consults with schools and colleges on safety and security.

Among those problems: accounting for the presence of loaded weapons in an environment rife with alcohol, drugs and young people; depending on police to decide in a split second which shooter is the good guy; considering the ways in which concealed guns could deter students or faculty from engaging in debate on contentious topics in a classroom setting; storing weapons (which in some cases could be used in a crime); and handling unattended weapons (ihn [sic] Utah, an employee once left his gun in a campus bathroom).

The list goes on.

Hang on; the people in charge of educating our youth are worried that they can’t address hot topics because someone’s carrying a firearm? No wonder we’re a nation of wimps. And cowards.

As for the assertion that more guns will deter campus shootings, many experts take issue with that. “When you allow more guns on campus, the injuries and deaths you’re going to see primarily are going to be from negligent and reckless conduct [like the recent accidental death of a Florida State University student] and increased suicides,”[Dean of the Stetson University College of Law Darby] Dickerson said. “You’re not going to see an increase in Loughners,” she said, referring to the former community college student who critically injured U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords and killed six others in a Tucson shooting last month.

Not to steal the ATF or Vin Diesel’s thunder, but the comments underneath the post are coming fast and furious. The debate is relatively civilized and largely in favor of campus carry. Still, it’s a good thing you can’t bring a gun to an Internet debate, eh?

[hat tip to Dozer for the link]

comments

  1. avatar JOE MATAFOME says:

    They forgot to add one more item to this list. “STAY HOME YOU LIL WUSSIES”

  2. avatar Skippy says:

    Re: “…and protecting the safety of high school students and younger children who often visit Alamo campuses for competitions, dual-credit programs and other events.”

    Are these the same children who are out and about in other parts of the community where there are people legally carrying a sidearm?

  3. avatar Ralph says:

    If the colleges really want to “do something” to assure safe campus carry, how about adding some credit courses on gun handling, safety and marksmanship?

  4. avatar Troy says:

    I just got home this afternoon, from a Major college basketball game that I chaperoned for our church youth program. I always carry, and I would feel I had neglected my duty to both my children, and the 80 or so children I meet with twice a week, if I did not.
    My state allows concealed carry on it’s public grounds, other than our legal courts and perhaps the post office.
    I know it sounds strange, but nothing happened. We enjoyed a basketball game in a public arena and that was that. Everyone went home safe.

  5. avatar Anonymous says:

    There is something that I haven’t seen talked about often or at all on this subject that I think needs addressed. As a student in a fairly well known University, in a decent sized city, my concern is not with something happening on campus. And definitely not with “saving the day” if someone with issues starts firing from the bell tower. Like it has been said before, my gun is for my protection, if the threat is to me directly then I would feel inclined to use my weapon, otherwise I am getting out of dodge like everyone else.
    The issue that I have, is coming to and leaving campus (it is largely a commuter campus). I happen to drive through several questionable areas during that process but be cause I cannot carry or leave my firearm in my vehicle while at class, I am left defenseless everywhere else that I travel that day. That is why I wish to carry on campus. Not necessarily because I feel my campus is unsafe, but I know everywhere else is not safe.

  6. avatar Dogman says:

    The sign makes me nostalgic for the 1960s. Guys carried pocket knives and some of them kept their shotguns in the dorm rooms during bird season, girls in short shorts rode their bikes into the student center and often brought along small pets and all students who did smoke could smoke in classrooms, dorms, virtually everywhere.

    …Well, maybe not the smoking everywhere part. Definitely the short shorts part.

    Used to be a song back then. Something about “Sign, sign, everywhere a sign”. Google it up. Lyrics seem appropriate.

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