Hyde Park, Chicago (courtesy Google maps)

TTAG reader VE writes:

I live in Chicago’s Hyde Park. It’s pretty much owned by the university of Chicago. Thanks to our concealed carry laws, any property owned by a university is a gun-free zone (GFZ). Since the U of C owns almost ALL of the commercial property in a six block radius – dry cleaners, ACE Hardware, Staples, the grocery story, Starbucks, the noodle shop and more – they are all posted. This is how the criminals view the campus area [via dnainfo.com] . . .

Chicago Police say they have caught a 21-year-old man they said committed nine robberies in Hyde Park since September . . .

According to police, [Tommy] Langston was one of the two men who four times approached University of Chicago students or faculty between Oct. 31 and Nov. 7 near 54th and Blackstone Avenue between and implied or showed a handgun before stealing money and valuables.

Langston also was a part of another string of three evening robberies on Sept. 7 in which two men again approached university students or faculty and implied a gun before stealing money and valuables, police said.

Police said the investigation about the two strings of robberies is still ongoing.

This one person committed nine robberies! (Strange how many of them did not seem to make the U of C police blotter). Do you think he would be willing to commit robberies if there weren’t a sea of GFZ stickers EVERYWHERE in my neighborhood? I think he’d at least think about it.

Instead, we are just a nice ripe plumb for the picking and surrounded by the lowest income areas in the whole city. Guns save lives. Gun control puts them in harm’s way.

43 Responses to This Is What Happens in a Gun Free Zone: University of Chicago Edition

  1. Gun free zones are about control, not about safety. Anyone who believes otherwise had not applied the requisite degree of logic necessary to think for ones self.

  2. GFZ is another way of saying free fire zone. if someone is going to commit a crime, do these people think he will see the sign about no guns and obey that “law” and not the others? Does logic ever come into play in these situations?

    • Exactly! Everyone on this blog should start calling them “criminal free fire zones.”

      That is what they really are.

    • Frank,

      I have managed to nail down gun grabbers on this. They freely admit that these signs have no effect on hardened criminals and gun grabbers have resigned themselves to being helpless victims of said hardened criminals.

      Rather, gun grabbers believe that there is another class of criminal: “marginal law abiding” people who will snap and go berserk under the right conditions. Gun grabbers claim that these “marginal law abiding” people will honor no-gun signs before snapping and going berserk … and cause fewer injuries without a firearm. Hence the supposed reason why gun grabbers want no-gun signs.

      While that almost makes sense, I have yet to hear anyone explain why we can trust so-called “marginal law abiding” people to honor no-gun signs even though we cannot trust so-called “marginal law abiding” people to honor assault and murder laws.

      • Yes. Most GFZ signs in Chicago only went up after Illinois finally got legal concealed carry. The signs are not there to protect against armed criminals, but rather because they don’t trust regular people to be armed: they might “snap” and spontaneously go on a rampage, or the gun might spontaneously “go off” and hurt someone.

        • “…there is another class of criminal: “marginal law abiding” people who will snap and go berserk….”

          That’s the most rediculous thing I’ve ever heard (well at least since the prez’ last speech). These people should be arrested for practicing (bad) psychology without a licence.

  3. this is something to raise with the legislature, not in your area, but down state. Lots of other colleges that own commercial real property as well. The law needs to be amended to address and differentiate between commercial property and educational property.

      • Dirk isn’t saying that they shouldn’t. He is telling the OP the best way to get that particular issued solved sooner versus later.

    • Dirk, I don’t know if you’ve spent much time studying the Illinois legislature, but I’m not holding my breath that our law will be amended anytime soon. The Illinois concealed carry statute was carefully crafted to make actual, legal carry as expensive, difficult and impractical as possible.

      They call Illinois a “shall issue” state. Well, just barely.

  4. I stand amazed.

    Not at the author’s report, but that the bad guy got arrested. Its Chicago-the criminals are the constituents!

  5. It need not be repeated for TTAG readers for the most part, but for all others, I repeat:

    “Gun free zones are only gun free for law abiding citizens. Criminals, the mentally unsound, and jihadist ignore them.”

  6. There have been a grand total of 78 public mass-casualty shootings since 1982.

    All but one occurred in a so-called “Gun-Free” Zone, and that sole exception is the unfortunate shooting of former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

    (NOTE: Military bases like Ft. Hood [fucking TWICE!] and the D.C. Navy Yard ARE gun-free zones, too.)

    U of C is literally nothing more than a squishy bullet trap full of undefended bodies for the next spree killer. It’s a soft target and criminals, as well as we PoTG, know that for a fact.

  7. Thanks VE. Illustrates the point we have made time and time again, excellently. Gun Free Zones are a wide open invitation to criminals, the violently tended mentally unstable and now Jihadists. If you are seeking remedy to this situation, I wish you all the best!

  8. We all kinda know what’s going on here, don’t we? It’s a setup; make us jump through hoops for everything, take our guns and/or ammo away, institute GFZ’s all over the place and in general, hand over de facto control of the streets to the hardcore criminal elements, such as has already occurred in the U.K. and Australia. Cui bono? Well, obviously the State; the crime generated points up the dire necessity of even more State control, more regulations, more laws, more ordinances, more cops and more toyz for the cops to play with.

    It also serves the purpose of always keeping the societal pots boiling at low simmer and the populace in a constant state of tension, nerves and fear. Not to worry, citizens; Our Nanny the Almighty State will protect you! Just hand over all your weapons, pay more taxes, and shut the eff up while we take care of business. Don’t like it? Feel a little rebellious? Well, we have options for you, too.

    And nowadays those options don’t necessarily mean being hauled off in a boxcar. They can quite easily cause you to lose your job, your house and possessions, your credit and pretty much put you on the street with nothing.

    And I’ll predict right now that no laws along these lines will be amended and no GFZ’s will be abolished; it’s the camel’s nose under the tent.

  9. Gun free zones are not designed to mitigate criminals – they are laws against the legal gun owner – they are this by design.

  10. I am starting to think for “educators” it is less about control and more about magical thinking. To them, anyone with a gun who does not have a badge is a violent criminal, because why would a good person want to carry a gun. They are true believers that if they prevent people even with a permit onto their property that they will not go into a random violent fit and kill everyone. They also believe that having a gun anywhere on campus immediately makes people less safe because it might just go off! They lack the critical thinking skills to see that their fears are unfounded, and yeah, good people own guns for protection and do not just go off of the deep end on a whim and start shooting people.

  11. People are getting chopped up by machetes and gunned down on the CTA (trains and buses), which is also a GFZ. If you get caught safely carrying with a permit there, you’ll be treated worse than the thugs. Bet on it.

  12. Golly and this is Barry Soetoro’s old neighborhood. Surrounded by some of the worst ghettos in America. Been there many times. Carry anyway college kids,,,

  13. This is news? Why? the area around U of C has always been one of the highest crime areas in the city, which is why its security force is the CPD. Long ago, students were warned not to leave campus on foot, and I remember a story circulated in the 70’s of a male student who was beaten, robbed and castrated when he failed to follow this advice. So this is just “same as its ever been” and it will remain that way because the vast majority of the students could not carry even if the gun free zone signs vanished, and/or live in student housing where guns are banned anyway.

  14. UofC wa a client of mine some 15 years ago and I spent many summers and late nights in Hyde Park. I can honestly say that within eyesight of the campus are some pretty harsh neighborhoods and it was during that time I wish I would have been allowed to *legally* carry a concealed handgun ;).

  15. In their defense, U of C has the largest private police force in the world. When i lived in Hyde Park, there was a U of C officer at every corner of that campus.

  16. The anti-firearm and non-firearm zones do not require one be a gun zealot to predict likely scenarios and outcomes. Given the brain dead common-sense most anyone can understand, I have to assume those who would battle against are likely, brain dead.

  17. Not only that, but chicago public school kids are being shot in droves in…you guessed it, “gun free” zones. and those moronic “safe passage” zones.

  18. I live about 20-25 miles due east of the author, a somewhat conservative area, there are relatively few signs, there is also much less need to carry, ironic. Whenever I have to go to the city (usually for work or a sporting event), I know my chances of being robbed or attacked (it happened to me and some friends about 10 years ago near Wrigley Field) go way up and my ability to defend myself goes way down, thusly I try to keep myself and my money in the suburbs where I am both safer and able to defend myself.

    • You live twenty miles East? That would be somewhere out on the lake, right? Yup yup, that would be a safe neighborhood, alright.

  19. My grandpa was a security officer at U of C in the 40s. He said all they had was a flashlight. When they were patrolling in the car (singular), they would pull up near the security office and beep the horn to see if there were any calls to check out, and the desk person (call taker?) would ring a bell if there was anything to report.

    He also said that one night he walked from the north side of town (where my grandmother lived) back down to the campus on the south side of town late at night with only his flashlight and didn’t think anything of it.

    One day after he and my grandmother got married, a neighbor had walked home with some groceries and a baby in the stroller and left the groceries in at the bottom of the steps in front of their building while they took the baby inside. When she came back down, the groceries were gone and they got scared and moved to the suburbs. Certain “fear mongerers” (his words) were also stirring up racial tension and that encouraged many more of the then-current residents to get out of the south side.

    Now there are lake-front condos with amazing views in Hyde park that only sell for about $70k.

  20. You want to guarantee property crimes and people getting killed. Designate areas gun free zones.
    Chicago area residents vote for these idiots. So they are getting what they asked for.
    Why should I expect anything else to happen. Then you all wonder why I could care less about them and their crime problems. Designate a GFZ and expect death. That’s all there is to it. They asked for it,they get it,stop complaining about it.

  21. Student “gun-free” zones? Not here. Of course, this incident won’t be mentioned by the national media. It’s probably “anecdotal”.

    UCF student pulls gun on attackers; Men sought

    No one injured in incident

    Author: Troy Blevins, Online Editor, Producer
    Published On: Jan 27 2015

    Deputies said one of the men held a pellet gun to the victim’s head after ordering him to the ground.

    A 22-year-old woman ran into her bedroom and got her handgun. Deputies said she pointed the gun at the men who fled on foot.

    The man dropped his pellet gun as he fled, authorities said.

    Both victims were not hurt and are students at the University of Central Florida, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

    http://www.clickorlando.com/news/men-break-into-orange-county-apartment/30955446

  22. annnnnd more robberies in the heart of the business district, where surely every store and business is a posted GFZ (i mean, any business that has a liquor license was told that to renew their license they must post the GFZ sticker. even if their sales are less than 51% of their profits. it’s the chicago way. “all your licenses in order pal??” )

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-cops-warn-of-south-loop-robberies-20150128-story.html

  23. For what it’s worth, the signs only prohibit the legal concealed carry by a permit holder. For a long time prior to the new law it has been legal go carry in any way you wish in your own home or fixed place of business, including open carry. The people who own and work in these establishments are allowed to keep and bear guns however they like, regardless of the property owner.

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