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Thread: From the Richmond Times Dispatch

  1. #1
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    Students push for guns on campus
    Those with permits ought to be allowed to carry, they say

    Monday, Aug 13, 2007 - 12:08 AM



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    By ZINIE CHEN SAMPSON
    THE ASSOCIATED PRESS


    Some college students are pushing for their schools to allow them to carry guns on campus. They say they should have the right to protect themselves in the event of a shooting such as the one that left 33 people dead at Virginia Tech.

    Andrew Dysart, a George Mason University senior, has organized a chapter of Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, which hopes to persuade legislators to overturn a Virginia law that allows universities to prohibit students, faculty and staff members with gun permits from carrying their weapons on campus.

    "There's no way to know what could have happened, but the students at Tech, they really should have had a chance," Dysart said of the April 16 shootings, in which gunman Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people and then himself. "They should have had the chance to defend themselves if it came down to that."

    Virginia law allows schools to decide whether to allow students with concealed-weapon permits to carry their guns on campus. One state school, Blue Ridge Community College, does so. Schools cannot prohibit nonstudents or other outsiders from carrying weapons onto campuses if they have legal permits.

    "In a sense [students] don't have the same rights to self-defense on campus as the general public," said Dysart, who said his four years as a Marine shaped his ideas about self-defense. "It's really lopsided the way it works."

    Gov. Timothy M. Kaine has said individual colleges and universities should be able to decide whether to allow students to carry guns on school grounds. He also said he would wait to see whether a panel studying the Virginia Tech shootings makes any recommendations on the issue.

    Nationwide, 38 states ban weapons at schools, and 16 of those specifically ban guns on college campuses, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Other states allow schools to adopt their own gun policies.

    Utah is the only state that specifically allows people to carry concealed weapons at public colleges. Legislation passed in 2004 allows concealed weapons on all state property, including colleges and universities. The University of Utah -- which had banned concealed weapons for decades -- challenged the law, but the state Supreme Court upheld it in 2006.

    South Carolina's legislature this year defeated a bill that would allow permit holders to carry guns onto public school campuses.

    Students for Concealed Carry on Campus members at more than 60 colleges are aiming to change their state laws to allow permit holders to carry on campus.

    Joe Culotta, a senior at the University of Central Florida, said he and fellow students had planned to form a group to advocate for concealed carry even before the Virginia Tech shootings. The Knights Rifle Association is seeking recognition as an official student organization this fall and plans to circulate a petition to send to Florida's governor about the issue, Culotta said. Many colleges generally oppose, for safety reasons, allowing concealed-carry permit holders to bring guns on campus and have resisted efforts to change the law.

    In the Virginia General Assembly, a bill to require schools to allow permit holders to carry concealed handguns was killed in subcommittee this year, said bill sponsor Del. Mark L. Cole, R-Spotsylvania. Cole said he'll wait until the Virginia Tech study panel issues its findings before deciding whether to reintroduce such a measure.

    "Obviously, the current policy is ineffective; it certainly didn't protect anyone at Virginia Tech," Cole said.

    The International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators, which represents campus public-safety officials, said the presence of students carrying concealed weapons "has the potential to dramatically increase violence on our college and university campuses."

    Allowing concealed weapons brings the potential for accidental gun discharge or misuse of firearms at parties, including those where alcohol or drugs are used, and the possibility for guns to be used to settle students' disputes, the group said in a statement.

    For their part, Virginia Tech officials have not actively lobbied against attempts to modify Virginia's law, spokesman Larry Hincker said, but the university's position on weapons has not changed after the shootings.

    "We don't believe that guns have any place in the classroom," Hincker said. "We've experienced far more of guns in the classroom than any university should have to endure."

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    Campaign Veteran Dutch Uncle's Avatar
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    67GT390FB wrote:

    "We don't believe that guns have any place in the classroom," Hincker said. "We've experienced far more of guns in the classroom than any university should have to endure."
    This article was generally less reflexively anti than most from the MSM, but we've come to expect liberal drivel from Larry Hincker, and he doesn't dissapoint this time either. The above gem is a classic example of liberalogic, a bizarre form of logic in which feelings trump facts and hysteria replaces dispassionate reason.

    If students brought their asthma medications to class, one could imagine Hincker retorting, "We don't believe medications have any place in a classroom. We've experienced far more of drug abuse in the classroom than blah, blah blah..." Folks like Hincker typically conflate the good with the bad, the evil with the virtuous because their personal biases and feeling states overwhelm their abilities to think clearly. People in the 19th century said the time to get back on a horse was right after he's thrown you, recognizing that the longer one has to worry about a potential circumstance, the more unreasonable one's fears become, until they transform into a true phobia. Methinks Larry has landed on his head once to often, and is probably beyond recovery.

    The LEO comments are only a bit less silly. After all the talk of "potentials" for various bad outcomes, there is no talk of the potential for good outcomes, and curiously NO further discussion of Utah's real world experience with "guns in the classroom". I suspect it has become a non-issue in Utah for lack of any bad outcomes, but the anti-gun agenda of most media and academic types makes it very difficult for them to point this inconvenient fact out.

    Anyway, keep up the good work, Andrew!

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    VIRGINIA TECH; RAGE, REFLECTION AND REJECTION
    One of the best responses that I have seen comes from the pen of John Connors of American Handgunner. It is indeed a passionant reply to those that would keep our schools "victim zones." Read it and see if you do not agree with him.
    http://www.americanhandgunner.com/CIS0907.html

    Editor Roy Huntington has given us freedom to copy, paste and send this to whomever we want.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Grapeshot wrote:
    VIRGINIA TECH; RAGE, REFLECTION AND REJECTION
    One of the best responses that I have seen comes from the pen of John Connors of American Handgunner. It is indeed a passionant reply to those that would keep our schools "victim zones." Read it and see if you do not agree with him.
    http://www.americanhandgunner.com/CIS0907.html

    Editor Roy Huntington has given us freedom to copy, paste and send this to whomever we want.

    Yata hey
    Wow!! This is great!
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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