Amber Lipsey: Inside the Twisted Mind of a Gun Control Advocate

Photo by Mike Watkins (courtesy pcccourier.com)

“Last week’s active shooter drill and the San Bernardino school shooting that took place last month has re-ignited the debate about campus police carrying guns,”Amber Lipsey, Managing Editor at Pasadena City College’s pcccourier.com writes. “While the argument is valid, I’m not quite ready to jump on the bandwagon on giving guns to officers on college campuses.”

The argument (posted above her “con” piece) is valid? Cue the heavenly choir! An anti on the fence who who can see sense! Yes, well, not really: “giving guns to campus cops will do more harm than good if those guns are going into the wrong hands.” Uh-oh . . .

It’s no secret that policing has been under fire the past few years due to killings of unarmed black people. These shootings have been going on for a long time, but came to national attention in August 2014 with the shooting of Michael Brown Jr.

More recently, the death of resident Reginald Thomas Jr. at the hands of Pasadena police last November has brought that issue to the forefront of the community. Questions of police training, implicit bias and use of deadly force have been heavily debated from all sides.

Considering all of this, how can we know for sure that our campus police are competent enough to carry guns without harming our students, faculty and staff? What are the odds that one of our officers would end up shooting and killing a student, either by accident, or from excessive force?

Somewhere between none and statistically speaking none? I don’t know. But I reckon Ms. Lipsey is making a bad landing at the wrong airport.

Here’s something that puts the “issue” of armed campus police in its proper perspective, from February of this year: Robbers Ambush at Least 10 People on Pasadena Streets.

“I thought it was a joke, but it wasn’t a joke,” said Esther Prado, who said she was approached from behind and thrown on the ground by the robbers.

Prado said she had a gun pressed to her head and had her phone, passport and other belongings stolen from her.

Zooming in to Pasadena City College itself we find Man Sought in Alleged Rape of Male Pasadena City College Student.

In a locker room in the W-building, no less.

According to the federally mandated Clery crime report for 2013 – 2015, her alma mater was home to five forcible sex offenses, seven robberies, three aggravated assaults, nine burglaries, one arson, and one case of “dating violence.” Those are on-campus reported instances.

I mention these attacks not to point out that PCC students should be “allowed” to exercise their natural, civil and constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms in defense against robbery, rape, assault and murder. Which they should. But I realize that idea would surely make Ms. Lipsey’s head explode.

I bring up these crimes to highlight the fact that the Pasadena City College students — and thus the campus police — have been victimized by some seriously bad people.

And yet Ms. Lipsey opposes armed defense because “All it would take is an officer on a power trip or without proper training and understanding to turn an interaction with a student for a minor offense, into that student leaving in a body bag.”

I understand Ms. Lipsey’s [overblown] fear of armed authority. Being from Rhode Island — where more than a few cops are little more than armed criminals with badges — I have a certain wariness in that regard.

But like most social justice warriors — Ms. Lipsey’s Twitter page proclaims that she’s “Very Black” — the aspiring journalist is letting political correctness get in the way of reason, logic and simple common sense. Like this:

PCC is a campus predominantly made up of Latino, Hispanic and Black students and it’s been proven that police are more likely to use force on Black and brown people at disproportionate rates than any other group.

It’s a fact that school shootings have increased and the safety of students and faculty should absolutely be a priority. However, I have a problem with the idea that the solution is to put guns in the hands of police on a campus with a majority Black and brown population.

I especially have an issue without knowing the full employment and behavioral history of these officers, and whether or not they’ve previously displayed racial or ethnic biases.

I wonder if Ms. Lipsey, the managing editor of a newspaper, made any attempt to ascertain this information, or simply mentions the remote possibility of a rogue cop shooting and killing a student of color to stoke the fires or racial prejudice. Hmmm.

I unequivocally understand the feeling that there is an increased need for more protection on college campuses across the nation. I simply won’t jump on the fear tactics bandwagon that believes putting guns in the hands of a group who has a history of excessive force with those guns is the way to make us safer.

And there you have it. Ms Lipsey understands the “feelings” of those who want their campus police armed. For antis, it’s always all about feelings. To paraphrase the Talking Heads, facts don’t do what she wants them to. So she mangles them to suit her purpose. But not the purpose of student safety.

As for an active shooter on campus, Ms. Lipsey only mentions that possibility in passing. No surprise there, either.

comments

  1. avatar strych9 says:

    “…how can we know for sure that our campus police are competent enough to carry guns without harming our students, faculty and staff?”

    You can’t but that doesn’t make your argument valid. Demanding perfection in an imperfect world is either a fool’s errand or the last refuge of someone who’s already lost an argument.

    “What are the odds that one of our officers would end up shooting and killing a student, either by accident, or from excessive force?”

    Again, impossible to calculate but also again, not a valid argument.

    1. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

      There you go again. Using logic and critical thinking skills instead of “feelings”.

    2. avatar DaveW says:

      Perhaps a review of the police activities in places where frat houses throw drunken brawls OFF campus and it’s the local police who respond and deal with underage drinking, excessive noise, assaults, and so on. Considering that such activities pose far more problems than what takes place on the campus, it would seem that the city police are armed and I have not heard of a rash of students gunned down.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        This is very true and we have to talk about proper reaction vs. overreaction in these cases.

        My alma mater took away the campus cop’s guns in the late 1990’s because there was a shootout with an armed BG and a cop’s bullet passed through the BG and hit a student in the head. Unfortunately the student was DRT.

        By mid 2000’s the cops were once again armed because I think we all know what happened when the BG’s the area realized that other than students who lived in “off campus” housing (houses not owned by the university but “on campus”) the chances of meeting armed resistance was 0.0% until city police arrived on scene.

        So, obviously just disarming the cops was a bad idea and it was a complete overreaction to what actually happened. Yes, it’s sad and tragic that a student died but, as Obama would say, let me be clear: it was the BG who made the decision to commit criminal acts and engage in a shootout with police rather than surrendering. He was clearly a threat to everyone in the area based on his behavior. The cop was forced to fire and he did hit his target. So, the question becomes is it better to leave everyone on campus at the mercy of armed BG’s or to take the minimal risk that something terrible like this might happen?

  2. avatar No one of consequence says:

    “All it would take is an officer on a power trip or without proper training and understanding to turn an interaction with a student for a minor offense, into that student leaving in a body bag.”

    This is true for any person granted authority over others. Just as some people get addicted to alcohol, drugs, sex or video games, some people become addicted to power. The Cartmann effect, if you will.

    That said, and based on what she writes, I wonder how she would like to live in a society where there’s nobody to point at as being the duly designated object of blame for one’s non-success: no police, no civil authority, nothing.

    She, of course, can find out if she wishes; all she has to do is move to a failed state like Somalia. I expect she won’t, however, because at some level she probably recognizes that the real trick will be getting out again, intact.

    But then I’m in a cynical mood today.

    1. avatar Nick says:

      The Cartmann effect? I like it. An excellent way to describe the affliction that so many politicians suffer from.

  3. avatar No one of consequence says:

    Oh, and there’s this little gem:

    I especially have an issue without knowing the full employment and behavioral history of these officers, and whether or not they’ve previously displayed racial or ethnic biases.

    First off, I have to wonder why she thinks she’s in any way qualified to make such an assessment. Other than being “very black,” of course.

    Second, how do you prove a negative? Take a guy with zero incidents of racial bias on his record … how do you know he’s just not really good at hiding it? Or, would you be looking for preference towards people of color and against whites as evidence of non-bias? (And yes, I know what kind of doublethink that implies would be going on in her mind…)

    1. avatar strych9 says:

      One also has to ask: In her mind, what is racial bias?

      Personally I think racial bias and racism can come from anyone but as we’ve seen in recent years many of these SJW types are more than willing to ignore overt and outright racism if it comes from the “right” people, people who may (or may not be) the victims of “historic oppression”.

      1. avatar Button Gwinnet says:

        To a racist, everything is racially biased.

  4. avatar Garrison Hall says:

    There’s no hope, we’re doomed.

  5. avatar Ralph says:

    Any cop who would defend Ms. Lipsey’s life is a fool and should be disarmed.

  6. avatar Pistol Pap says:

    I would not attend a college that disarmed its police force. What happens in the event of an active shooter? If this would ever materialize it would be an easy solution. All police officers walk off the job and all students transfer to new schools due to unsafe environment. That will get their attention quick , no students – no revenue

  7. avatar Cadeyrn says:

    Very tired of the trite, ludicrous and simply outrageous comments of pure idiots being bandied about everywhere. They’re idiots. Time was, people didn’t actually listen to idiots or reprint their idiot actions or blather. They just let idiots sit in the corner and do idiot things and figured Darwin would get around to them sooner or later.

    Well, it looks like that plan backfired because the idiots all got together in the corner and despite their trans-gender, non-identifying, insistence that they’re not breeders or duhs, they still figured out how to reproduce and have actually succeeded wildly at breeding a gigantic horde of idiots who are hollering about everything everywhere. And that’s what passes for news today.

    I respectfully submit that this is how Rome fell. Not because their legions were anything less than lethal, not because the bread-and-circuses weren’t working, not (entirely) because they were counterfeiting and debasing their currency but because people started giving credence to idiots and idiot opinions.

    1. avatar Button Gwinnet says:

      Larry Niven described a world where the citizenry had devolved to moron level average intelligence. Prior to this devolution, the last remaining intelligent(?) people had designed elaborate systems and safety nets to keep the race alive. It’s been decades since I read it, but I clearly remember a traffic jam of self driving cars and thousands of idiots and morons dutifully tooted their horns and shouted “Suvva bi! Bassa!”
      http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/64725.A_World_Out_of_Time

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        I remember that one!

        Humans in cryo-sleep were called “Corpsicles”…

        *snicker*

      2. avatar Shallnot BeInfringed says:

        “I clearly remember a traffic jam of self driving cars and thousands of idiots and morons dutifully tooted their horns and shouted “Suvva bi! Bassa!””

        Well, you probably remember that, but it’s not from “A World Out of Time”. I’ve owned that book for 25 years and have read it at least half a dozen times, but what you describe doesn’t happen in that story. Self-driving “cars” (tchiple), yes; the rest of it, definitely not…

        Sorry, I’m one of Larry Niven’s biggest fans, and I know most of his novels like the back of my hand!

  8. avatar YAR0892 says:

    I’m surprised the Armed I telligentsia missed her comment about it being ‘proved’ minorities are disproportionally fired upon by Police, when most studies have proven the polar opposite to be true.

    1. avatar FedUp says:

      Now, now. Don’t go trying to hold Ms Lipsey responsible for her own racist bias, or it might make her little head explode.

  9. avatar MamaLiberty says:

    In a rational world, arming campus police would not be the question at all. Each person, student, faculty, staff member on campus, is morally responsible for his/her own safety, and to some extent for mutual defense. They should all be armed, and ready to do whatever is necessary.

    And let’s not even start with the magical age barrier for students. And any students who want to binge drink, or engage in any other idiotic behavior that would impinge on rational gun ownership, should not be there to start with. And that’s the responsibility of their parents, as well as the students themselves.

  10. avatar Woodenships says:

    What is the current racial makeup of the campus police and would lipsey be more comfortable if the campus police looked like her and would she be comfortable arming them?

    1. avatar Button Gwinnet says:

      Armed black police officers are not really Black as they are working for the Oppressors. Uncle Tom is an overused phrase, as well as being literally opposite what they think it means, but there you have it.

      Hippie dreams.

  11. avatar TyrannyOfEvilMen says:

    Clearly, what we need is an iPhone app that lets SJWs browse the biographies and mental health histories of police officers that might be on the way to their house because of their 911 call. ?

    And yet these anti-liberty cuckoo birds call us paranoid…

  12. avatar Woodenships says:

    Uh, sarcasm

  13. avatar Chip in Florida says:

    “..considering all of this, how can we know for sure that our campus police are competent enough to carry guns ”

    If you were asking about regular people carrying firearms I would be asking you where you got the arrogant idea that you get to know that about them. But…..

    You asked about knowing for sure the competence of Civil Employees. And the answer is simple…. these employees have (or should) have regular training and testing to prove competence. Here in my little City by the sea Officers have to do annual qualifications for every firearm in their job description. For almost all of them that includes a handgun, a shotgun, and a Beanbag gun (yes, they have a separate one from the shotgun). If you see one of our Officers with a firearm on their hip or a shotgun in the car you can know they have demonstrated at least a minimum level of competence with them.

  14. avatar Mickey says:

    “I especially have an issue without knowing the full employment and behavioral history of these officers, and whether or not they’ve previously displayed racial or ethnic biases.”

    Why is any public school hiring ANY employees without knowing this. Where I am a Municipal Employee prior to being hired they run a background check, and require a drug test.

  15. avatar MeRp says:

    I agree with her; there should not be any special carve-out for campus police; EVERYBODY (who can otherwise legally carry) should be allowed to carry on campus to ensure public safety. Oh, that wasn’t her point? Hmm, well it was a point well made anyhow!
    Furthermore, special effort should be made towards educating the student body on safe ownership, handling, and carrying of firearms, especially the “black and brown” students to whom she refers. Many (not all) of them come from inner city areas, and only have negative and irresponsible exposure to firearms. Empowering them with knowledge and confidence can only serve to make them and their fellows safer.

  16. avatar Mike Betts says:

    One might do well to question the criteria the college uses in the selection process for campus police candidates. It occurs to me that anyone who is given the power to deprive a citizen of his liberty should also demonstrate a background making him/her suitable to be carrying a firearm in the course of his/her duties. Anyone not so qualified shouldn’t be wearing a badge, either.

  17. Hello sir,

    I appreciate your attention to our publication and our student journalists. It’s an honor, really. But I would appreciate it if you would correctly attribute our photographer, Mike Watkins, for his photo. It is not a creative commons piece, it does require correct citing. As a publication, I would expect you to know that.

    Thank you.

    Opinion editor at the Courier
    – Allison Stutzka

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

button to share on facebook
button to tweet
button to share via email