In Which I Admit I Was Wrong About Bill Hobbs

Earlier in the week, via Tiny Pasture, I learned that Bill Hobbs thinks that Republicans are happier than Democrats.  And I admit that I scoffed at such a thing.  I realize that the chief propagandist for the Tennessee Republican Party has to portray being a Republican in the best light possible, because part of his job is to bring people into the fold.  But are Republicans really so much more happy than Democrats?  I kind of doubted it.

Until I realized what makes Hobbs happy.

See, I had been assuming that Hobbs, like me, is made happy by simple things–families that love each other, smooches from a sweetie, loyal friends, good food, a perfect metaphor, a song you can dance to.  And, by those criteria, he doesn’t seem much happier than me.  Kind of less, actually.

And I was imagining that, if I had to get up every day and espouse letting 18-24 year olds arm themselves against their college professors (I guess that would end the pop quiz right quick.  Could you imagine?  You could study for a test or you could just get you and your buddies to set your guns on the table within arms’ reach.  And could you imagine the fraternity parties when they all have guns?) or denying children loving homes or lying to them about the way the world works, I’d be pretty miserable.

But, y’all, I have come to realize that that’s what makes him happy.  He imagines campuses full of drunken idiot teenagers armed to the teeth, not (often) killing each other only because of the threat of mutually assured destruction, but ever ready to menace professors and the administration and that pleases him.  He imagines older children and teenagers shuffling through the foster-care system without ever finding a permanent home and, as long as it also hurts people who aren’t or can’t be married, he feels good.  And, if he can aid in spreading idiocy by supporting legislation that would hamstring teachers and keep them from giving information to children that goes beyond what the most ignorant of parents want their children to know, he’s all for it.  (I mean, seriously, have you ever heard of such a thing?  It’s called ‘learning’ because the process involves finding out about things you don’t already know about.  What Hobbs is advocating–letting parents limit not only what their own children can learn, but what all children can learn, based on their own fears and prejudices, is practically child abuse.)

So, I concede, Hobbs is probably happier than me, because the things that make him happy are evil and we all know there’s plenty of evil to go around.

——-

As a side note, it seems to me that, if tragedies like the one at NIU really could be prevented from having more armed folks on campus (and it seems to me that the presence of more guns isn’t a guarantee of that, just because having a gun and being able and ready to use it when the shooting starts is not the same thing–look at what soldiers have to go through to train themselves to not automatically flee situations, but to remain calm and react to them), the solution is to have something similar to air marshals–people who look just like anyone else, but are armed and trained to shoot to kill.

57 thoughts on “In Which I Admit I Was Wrong About Bill Hobbs

  1. I’m guessing this story brings great joy to Hobbs’s heart. It illustrates what happens when you both bring guns into school and teach children that gay people are some horrible thing that is so terrible we can’t even mention their existence.

  2. Actually B, studies for years have said that conservatives are happier than liberals.

    So while you may consider conservatives judgemental, very few I know would type would type one that read:

    “So, I concede, Hobbs is probably happier than me, because the things that make him happy are evil and we all know there’s plenty of evil to go around.”

    A person generally happy in their own life would not need to type a sentence so full of bile.

  3. People who are lawfully armed outside of a college campus don’t go around shooting people willy-nilly, and they’re no more likely to do so ON the campus. Also, if a criminal or severely deranged person decides to shoot up some random people before offing himself, he’s LESS likely to choose a place where there’s the possibility of anyone being armed at all. There are easier pickings behind a “No Guns Allowed” sign, hence the horrendous number of college shootings. Your “let’s arm SOME people but not let on who they are, but keep guns out of the hands of students” argument only has moderate merit, because, like the police, those “marshals” cannot be everywhere all the time. In the two minutes it took police to get to the scene in Illinois, the gunman at NIU had already killed. 30 of the 32 victims at V-Tech were killed WHILE the police were on campus.

    In most states (including TN), the age to legally carry a concealed weapon is 21. That means that only seniors would be armed, which is less than 1/4 of the campus. That’s hardly cause for concern, in my opinion, if they all had to go through the same thing I went through in order to get my certification (at age 24). It’s not something you undertake lightly, and believe me, when you’re done with a concealed carry class, you leave with a HUGE sense of responsibility. Everyone I know who’s undergone training feels the same way.

    I don’t believe everyone needs to carry or should carry. But I think people need to stop being sensationalist about this situation and look at FACTS – the FACTS are that there are several college campuses in this country that allow lawful concealed carry, and NONE of them have had any incident, especially not involving alcohol and firearm use. The FACTS are that the cities with the strictest gun control laws have the worst instance of crimes committed with illegally-obtained weapons.

    I don’t mean to get on a soapbox in your comments, and I respect that you have your opinions of guns that may or may not be warranted in my opinion, but it kind of chaps my hide that you would call guns themselves evil, when they are nothing of the sort. The PEOPLE holding the gun dictate the gun’s actions, good or bad, so the PEOPLE are who we need to be worrying about. Banning guns does nothing to discourage those who would have obtained them illegally in the first place.

    /soapbox, and no offense meant toward you.

  4. Of course, it’s only apocrypha, but with regards to “People who are lawfully armed outside of a college campus don’t go around shooting people willy-nilly, and they’re no more likely to do so ON the campus.” the young man who shot people on the Illinois campus did so with legally obtained weapons. He could have also legally and moderately simply obtained a carry permit because there was no legal reason to suspect he was about to go bonkers.

  5. And the fact also remains that if concealed-carry was allowed on campus for OTHER legally-armed folks, he would have been outnumbered, and possibly wouldn’t have picked the campus for his target – this crisis could have been averted. That particular coulda-woulda-shoulda game doesn’t work here, because the fact is that regardless of how and why he obtained his weapons, he picked that campus because he knew that no one else would be armed, and he would be able to have his way with everyone.

  6. Ok, since we’re all about FACTS, let’s look at some facts. It was a intro class open to freshmen and sophomores, 18 and 19 year olds. The only person in the classroom old enough to be armed and eligible for a carry permit was the grad student leading the section. He was the person popped first. The first premise of your counterfactual — that in an armed campus, there would have been someone in the room to return fire — is just wrong.

  7. If even the grad student was armed, and the gunman didn’t know what he was going into, don’t you think that would have given him pause? Meaning, if it was known that teachers and students over the age of 21 were likely to carry, or were at least allowed to do so, I honestly believe, based on my readings/research and my personal experience with the folks who are most likely to attempt to break the law, that this simply would not have happened, because the gunman wouldn’t have had the confidence to assume that he would be completely un-contested. Crimes like these bank on no competition from the victims.

    That’s where I stand, that’s where I will continue to stand, and I’m going to respectfully bow out and discontinue commenting on the matter in here, because this blog is not mine. If any of you would like to continue the discussion, you’re more than welcome to follow the link to my blog and do so.

  8. Except that I never called guns evil. And I have no problem with colleges deciding for themselves that the best way to keep their campuses safe is to allow folks to carry, if they’d like. Administrators have a sense of their own campuses. They might also like the marshal idea. I would imagine that, on a campus with quite a few older students, having armed folks would be less problematic than having younger students.

    But my point remains that even having armed folks in the class is no guarantee that they would have been able to stop the shooting. As Bridgett points out, the shooter always has the element of surprise on his side AND in a lot of these cases, he knows he has nothing to lose.

    What does an armed man bent on ending his day in suicide fear from folks with guns?

    Lee, as for my bile, what can I say? Hobbs’s positions (with the exception of just arming the whole world, which I find silly and not practical) are evil. It’s not a matter of preference, of saying “Well, I like blue and Hobbs likes red and to each their own; let’s all sing ‘Enter Sandman’ together and grab a beer.”

    My position is that grown people should be able to love and form relationships with other grown, consenting adults, and if those relationships are healthy and beneficial to the community, they should be able to be treated with the same lack of concern we treat other grown folks with.

    We shouldn’t cut children off from having a happy, stable home. We shouldn’t force teachers to lie by omission about the existence of those people who are perfectly normal.

    Those positions are evil. It’s not just that I differ in opinion from Hobbs; it is that those positions he holds increase suffering and require everyone to lie so that his bigotry can continue unchallenged.

    Maybe it’s simplistic, but in my opinion, good is what decreases suffering and evil is what increases suffering. And what he’s advocating as a way for the state to treat gay people increases suffering. It is evil.

  9. Squeaky, I don’t have an overall opinion about the merits of your argument, but I’m not entirely convinced that the kind of people in the midst of going on shooting rampages on campuses are really in a mindset of thinking logically about possible consequences. They generally kill themselves anyway – seems like the major thing that would change would be their letting someone else do that for them.

  10. Squeaky, don’t be ridiculous. Of course you’re welcome to commandeer the comments here, if you think you have a point we’re being obtuse about.

    I mean, if you’d feel more comfortable talking about it over at your blog, fair enough; I respect that. I do that myself.

    But please don’t feel like you have to leave rather than be contentious.

    People’s hackles are up because this hits so close to home for a lot of us in terms of the college campus side of the controversy. We’re sitting here trying to imagine not only what it would be like if a shooter burst into our place of employment, but what it would mean for the 99.99999999% of the time when there are no deranged killers shooting people, but we still have campuses full of guns.

    But, if gun folks can understand why we’re so uneasy and make good points in the other direction, what’s not to appreciate about that?

  11. The “arm everyone” argument always fails because so few of those advocating it know what it is like to have a large caliber gun go off in your general direction. Only a tiny fragment (is that repetitive?) of the general population would have the presence of mind to draw, aim, fire and take cover. That whole class could have been armed, hammers cocked, and the same number of people would likely still be dead. It ain’t like the movies. Bridgett is right, surprise is a huge tactical advantage, even the most highly trained soldiers seldom overcome it.

    btw, it is terrifying to point a loaded weapon at another human being. If you aren’t terrified at the mere thought, I don’t want to know ya.

  12. ‘He could have also legally and moderately simply obtained a carry permit because there was no legal reason to suspect he was about to go bonkers.’

    Incorrect. There is no lawful concealed carry in illinois. Say, isn’t it illegal to shoot people?

    “The only person in the classroom old enough to be armed and eligible for a carry permit was the grad student leading the section.”

    Not relevant, concealed carry is illegal in Illinois. but you know factually that there were no people above the age of 21 nearby?

    “armed folks in the class is no guarantee”

    indeed. but when there all unarmed and there is a school shooting, the outcome is guaranteed to be bad.

    ‘really in a mindset of thinking logically about possible consequences’

    Then why do they all happen in malls, schools, churches where there unlikely to encounter resistance?

    “The “arm everyone” argument always fails because so few of those advocating it”

    no, your analysis fails because no one seriously advocates arming everyone. it’s a straw man. we advocate those who are law-abiding and who desire to, be allowed to. I can make anyone’s argument sound dumb by changing their argument.

    As to the rest of it, I disagree. In mass murderers v. armed citizens, citizens do very well:

    http://www.saysuncle.com/archives/2007/12/10/mass_murderers_v_armed_citizens-2/

    and arming teachers works in Israel:

    http://www.saysuncle.com/archives/2008/01/31/the_school_shooting_you_didnt_hear_about/

  13. Surely you see huge differences in risk assessment between an Israeli kibbutz and a U.S. University campus? Many israelis served in the military, their whole lives are spent next to people who want to kill them. Not an appropriate comparison.

    Its really simple, Uncle. Arm yourself to the teeth, train until you can shoot a housefly in the ass. If you don’t see me coming, I’ll drop you every time. Like I said, almost no one can overcome that tactical advantage. The idea that some 22 yr old teacher in Gallatin could reach into her purse, retrieve her weapon, point it and shoot an attacker while coming under fire is beyond ridiculous. Or should High School seniors come to class strapped?

  14. ‘If you don’t see me coming, I’ll drop you every time’

    Thank you for stating the obvious, Tactical Tommy. Now, back to the issue at hand.

    ‘The idea that some 22 yr old teacher in Gallatin could reach into her purse, retrieve her weapon, point it and shoot an attacker while coming under fire is beyond ridiculous.’

    I know, it never happens:

    http://www.jta.org/cgi-bin/iowa/breaking/106606.html
    http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1024078861416
    http://www.davekopel.com/2A/OthWr/principal&gun.htm

    And above links have more since you seemed to not follow them.

  15. Arm yourself to the teeth, train until you can shoot a housefly in the ass. If you don’t see me coming, I’ll drop you every time

    Word up, Mack. And I think there’s more in that vein to the Israeli comparison, too. Pound for pound, per capita, etc., the Israelis are the most well-armed, well-trained fighters in the world. They are so because they took land from the locals by violence and have used violence to hang on to (and expand ) it ever since. If they had found a way to create and build Israel without churning up so much brutally violent animosity, then they might not have to arm themselves so prolifically

    Likewise, arming everyone in sight doesn’t solve the problem of why people kill. It tickles me a bit (“tee hee!”) that one of the arguments used by gun advocates is that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” I agree with that wholeheartedly, but I also think it follows that the inverse is true: if guns aren’t the problem, then more guns won’t be the solution. One of the most bloody acts ever carried out on U.S. soil was initiated (or so the story goes) with frickin’ boxcutters, and another one was accomplished with a truckload of fertilizer. My point, if there is one, is that trying to mitigate potential violence with the presence of more tools of violence may seem like a sensible short-term solution, but eventually we’ll find that those intent on spreading death will simply find other ways to kill large numbers of people (especially if they’re suicidal).

    This may not appeal to those who see violence as The Manly Way or as something that is an inexorable part of our biology (easy to rationalize until violence is visited upon you or the ones you love and you can’t do shit about it), but I believe the best bet is to try and get behind what makes people want to go out and kill large or small numbers of their fellow human beings and try to mitigate that. Again, I agree that guns aren’t the problem. They might make killing easier for the one who fires first, but trying to take them away or add more of them ain’t going to stop the killing.

  16. Jeez, Uncle, if you are going to proudly point to your “evidence”, make sure it supports your assertions, and not mine. Your first link was again about an israeli. Not a fair comparison, for reason Church Sec and i have laid out. In your second link, here’s the money shot:
    The students, Tracy Bridges and Mikael Gross, had worked as police officers in North Carolina before moving to Grundy. Both said they ran to their cars and grabbed weapons when the shooting started on the second floor of the law school.

    Obviously, once they were away from the immediate danger, and retrieved their weapons, and went back in….THEY had a tactical advantage.

    The last link was so silly I cannot waste time commenting about it. Suffice to say, again, tactics tactics tactics.

  17. i did not offer ‘evidence’. you said it couldn’t happen. I showed you that it has on many occasions.

    ‘Your first link was again about an israeli’

    Irrelevant.

    ‘THEY had a tactical advantage’

    Sure they did.

    ‘I cannot waste time commenting about it.’

    I know. it doesn’t fit your narrative.

    You seem to be concluding that because:

    ‘Arm yourself to the teeth, train until you can shoot a housefly in the ass. If you don’t see me coming, I’ll drop you every time’

    It is therefor useless to allow people part of a group to be armed. That’s retarded. Yes, you can get the drop on anyone and kill them. It’s hard to get the drop on a group of, say, 30 students when you don’t who is armed and who is not.

    BTW, for a good laugh google up ‘Tactical Tommy Goes To The Store’

    And Secretary, i concur with most of what you said. Except this I take small issue with:

    ‘if guns aren’t the problem, then more guns won’t be the solution’

    I concur. But, since guns are neither the solution nor the problem, why does it matter if the good guys are armed?

  18. why does it matter if the good guys are armed?</i

    Good guys doesn’t seem at all relative? BTW, the point about the Israeli is nowhere near irrelevant. If you agreed with what C.S. said, you agree that there is a different dynamic at work in that culture, no? We are a soft nation, where hardly anyone serves in the military. It matters.

  19. It’s hard to get the drop on a group of, say, 30 students when you don’t who is armed and who is not.

    Are any of the 30 students telepathic? If so, then your construction makes perfect sense. Otherwise, I call bullshit. C’mon, comrade, let’s be real here. If he doesn’t know who’s armed, it’s because he can’t see their heaters. If he can’t see their irons, it’s most likely because they don’t have them out and ready. So, assuming the pool of potential victims contains no telepaths, the would-be shooter automatically has “the drop,” as it were. Mack is still right. The one in charge is the “bad guy” of the given moment, unless he announces his plan loudly enough and gives his quarry enough time to draw and aim. The only difference might be that the “bad guy” dies by someone else’s hand instead of his own, but that will be little consolation to the loved ones of the armed dead people who the shooter wasn’t polite enough to inform in advance of his ill intent.

    And I stand by my other point. Even if you can train everyone to have their guns drawn and ready all the time without accidentally killing one another, then those intent on mass killing will just find another way. IED, anyone? Or maybe the Charles Whitman method (now there was a thoughtful mass murderer), which still keeps the Beloved Gun in the picture…

  20. Re: Students revealing weapons to intimidate.

    It is called brandishing, it is very illegal, and you only do it once without just cause. If I was a prof and a student set their fiearm on a desk in an obviously threatening manner, I would go to the bathroom and return with campus security and that student would not only lose their firearm, they’d lose their permit, and be brought up on criminal charges akin to assault. You learn about this in your CCW classes. If I was carrying legally on a campus, I’d NEVER let ANYONE know I had a permit or a firearm, because I know someone would take issue with the fact and accuse me of brandishing it toward them.

    Re: Tactical situation in a classroom.

    Shooter enters room, fires the first round, everyone looks to the sound. Those that know the sound are already diving for cover as the second shot rings out. By the time the fourth shot is out, anyone who is armed has likely already drawn their weapon and EVERYONE is keeping low and either under cover or running AWAY from the shooter. Armed classmates can now begin looking for an opportunity to return fire. The NIU shooter took the time to reload his shot gun, an operation that can take 5-10 seconds depending on how fast he is. If one person remained who was armed, they could have had ample opportunity to end it right there.

    Before anybody begins speaking about how a CCW holder would be ineffective in an active shooter case, I suggest you take a combat handgun course and learn the reality. Many CCW holders have taken such courses, they know the truth.

  21. ‘that will be little consolation to the loved ones of the armed dead people’

    But what will be of consolation to the living is that there are more of them than there would have been otherwise, which is the point. A madman with a gun can start killing people. A law-abiding person can minimize that death toll. No one asserted that arming someone would necessarily end it before it starts. You know, like Jeanne Assam did in Colorado.

  22. Oh bullshit. I’ve had training and advanced training on weapons, tactics, you name it. I can tell you that the very first you do upon hearing a loud goddam boom nearby is duck and seek cover. look towards the sound? Right. The average person will sit there through the first two shots…by the time they snap to whats up, the shooter has reloaded and continues shooting. Sure, there may be that real life jack bauer guy nearby and he springs into action, but by that time, many are dead, and now we are just comparing losses. C.S. is dead on here, we need to determine what it is in our culture that is producing so many suicidal, homicidal maniacs. Easy access to high powered weaponry is a factor, no matter how you slice it,.

  23. Speaking only for my own campus, I think a lot of people are making dubious assumptions about how campuses and classrooms are set up. Our security guards are unarmed. Our main security center is a two-minute flat run from our main classroom building. Our police first responders might get to campus in 90 seconds or so. There is a single entrance to most of our classrooms and the security phone is right by that door — by the time you know you have a problem in the classroom, the intruder would be between you and the phone. (Yes, this has been noted as a design problem.) The doors cannot be locked from the inside, nor can they be locked down externally automatically. Many of the classrooms have no windows big enough to dive out of — the basement classrooms have no windows at all. The classrooms are overstuffed with furniture. There is no room to run or even back up or move laterally. (My current classroom was built for 15 second graders and now houses 25 adults and their winter gear, plus tables and chairs.) Chairs and tables are bolted to the floor — they cannot be overturned and used to barricade the door. They cannot be overturned and used for cover either, not that glorified plywood would deflect a round anyhow. In the classrooms with a stage, there’s a technology counter (sort of a big 8 X 4 X 4 box) that the profs stand behind — you enter the stage door and that big box is immediately in front of you. In other words, as a surprise shooter, you’d be shooting from a four-foot elevation down at people on the floor while standing behind waist-high cover.

    Most of my students have never held a gun, much less shot a gun or owned a gun. It goes without saying that they have never aimed one with the intention of shooting a person — that’s a whole other thing altogether. They have no military training and they have no police training. Hell, they fall apart when someone passes out in class — I can imagine that they would become truly useless in emergency situations. They are overgrown big kids and they aren’t going to become action heroes if you hand them a Glock.

    I don’t know. More guns is not the thing that I would try first.

  24. ‘what it is in our culture that is producing so many suicidal, homicidal maniacs’

    It’s called ‘the crazy’.

    BTW, Mack, you guys keep saying ‘this can’t happen’ or ‘this won’t happen’ etc. And I keep telling that it has happened. And then you change the subject.

    ‘The average person will sit there through the first two shots’

    A CCW holder is likely not an ‘average person’ in terms of reacting to such a situation.

  25. the FACTS are that there are several college campuses in this country that allow lawful concealed carry, and NONE of them have had any incident, especially not involving alcohol and firearm use.

    That may or may not be true, but either way it’s a meaningless “fact.” I’d bet you fewer people die in Ferrari crashes each year than, say, in Fords. Does that mean Ferrari’s are far safer cars? Shooting such as these haven’t happened at 99.99% of all college campuses. To draw conclusions based on the fact that they haven’t happened at some tiny subcategory of these schools is impossible.

    I agree with B. in that I think the college ought to be able to establish it’s own policy on the matter. I think the pro-“arm the world” folks overestimate the effect allowing students to carry weapons would have. Does knowing that someone in the classroom might have a gun deter a potential criminal? Maybe, but you need look no further than SayUncle’s links to see that armed classrooms DO get shot up.

    Secondly, making it legal to carry a weapon doesn’t put weapons in people’s hands. First of all, I’d be curious to know what percentage of college students even own guns to begin with. I suspect it’s not high. Even for those that do, I wonder how many would carry them to class. Perhaps things have changed since I was in college, but I recall that many students couldn’t be bothered to change from their pajamas to actual clothes before going to class. I think it’s unlikely that people are strapping firearms under their PJs. I suspect that if a college makes it legal to carry weapons into the classroom, 99% of the classrooms will be completely unarmed anyways.

    The argument that gun-owners are inherently well-trained to use guns is demonstrably false as well. As has been pointed out, firing at a shooting range (and let’s face it, there are a fair number of gun owners who don’t even do that), isn’t the same as a combat situation. Geez, how many stories have we all read about little old ladies shooting their toes off after hearing their house creak in the night.

    When you put a gun in the hands of an on-campus college student, you’re potentially putting it in the hands of a roommate who may well have NO training and might even be the one who’s a bit unstable, who might take advantage of the fact that there’s easy access to a gun where he or she might otherwise not go seeking one.

    I think there are reasonable arguments to be made for allowing students to carry firearms on campus, but I think too many gun-advocates are too quick to ignore the many reasons why a college might choose to prohibit carrying firearms. IF you allow guns in the class, and IF a shooter actually arrives, and IF somebody in that particular classroom is actually armed, it’s still no more likely that somebody will become a “hero” than it is that a cross-fire in a crowded classroom would lead to a greater tragedy. That’s alot of IFs that, even when all met, don’t guarantee a happy ending. Are the risks worth the benefits? Maybe, maybe not. But if we can agree that both positions have their risks and benefits, shouldn’t it be up to the college/university to decide how that ratio plays out for them? And students for whom it’s an important issue can choose their schools accordingly.

  26. I don’t believe the state having a concealed carry law plus NIU allowing concealed carry on campus would have been likely to prevent any deaths in the NIU case – he killed in a single classroom, and shot himself shortly after it started. Too fast for armed others to act (as many have pointed out here).

    I believe it would have likely prevented deaths in the Virginia Tech case where the killer shot people in a number of different areas over a significant period of time. More guns (not everybody, not even all those who own guns legally, just those motivated to go through the special concealed carry training) would reduce the number of dead people in such incidents. Not prevent them, but (as many others have pointed out) banning guns would not prevent these incidents either: people with murder in mind will find a way regardless of weapon restrictions.

    If we can’t prevent mass murders, it at least makes sense to enact policies that would lower the death toll.

  27. people with murder in mind will find a way regardless of weapon restrictions.

    Actually, what I said was that people with murder in mind– particularly grandstanding mass murder of the college campus variety– will find a way no matter how well armed their pool of potential victims happens to be. The assumption underlying the suggestion to arm and train as many as possible assumes that the status quo for mass killers will subsequently remain unchanged. That is an unreasonable assumption. If they can’t do it with guns, they’ll use bombs. If they can’t do it at close range, they’ll obtain the necessary firepower and do it from a distance. That’s why I think arguing about how many people we should arm is ultimately pointless and counterproductive. The approach with the most potential for positive return is to examine why a handful of people snap and then arm themselves to hunt down their fellow human beings.

  28. If we can’t prevent mass murders, it at least makes sense to enact policies that would lower the death toll.

    I think everybody agrees with this. The problem is that we don’t all agree on what policies will lower the death toll.

  29. Aunt B. – part of the reason I stopped commenting was because of the pattern I’m seeing here upon re-reading some of these comments (not all of them, mind you), and that I suspected would come up pretty quickly: the tendency of some people, when faced with a prospect that, as you pointed out, makes them uncomfortable, to basically stick their fingers in their ears and yell “LALALALA” while making completely pointless comparisons to try to discredit things they don’t agree with or don’t want to acknowledge.

    I suppose I did read your entry and take some things the wrong way, but my original comment still stands.

    Dolphin is correct – I mean, it’s nice that we all have the common intent (or wish, in some cases) for this sort of thing to not happen any more, but obviously there’s just no solution, proposed or proven, that everyone can agree on.

    I take issue with this, however, by the same commenter: Perhaps things have changed since I was in college, but I recall that many students couldn’t be bothered to change from their pajamas to actual clothes before going to class.

    If you’re serious about self-protection and exercising your right to carry, believe me, you’ll take the time to properly dress to conceal your weapon. This, and I beg your pardon for saying so, is a really, really stupid argument.

    Mack: The average person will sit there through the first two shots…by the time they snap to whats up, the shooter has reloaded and continues shooting.

    Technical nitpick here, but a magazine usually holds more than two shots, as does a pump-action shotgun (which can hold up to 7 rounds). And, as was already pointed out, the reloading process for that shotgun can take up to 10 seconds. Count to ten. It’s a lot longer than you think. I’ve timed getting to my weapon where I have it stowed in my house from the furthest point, and that’s how long it takes me to run across my house, up the stairs, open my gun case, cock the weapon, and aim it from my vantage point (which is a loft overlooking several areas, and where I have great cover if someone should break in with a gun themselves). If someone’s breaking into my house, that’s less time than it would take for them to break the door pane and unlock the door from the inside. Essentially, that’s MORE than adequate time for someone to even lunge at the gunman from behind with a book or their fists and distract him long enough to disarm him. I can guarantee you that if he wanted to load that gun in under 10 seconds, his eyes were on the gun, not the people in the room.

    That whole class could have been armed, hammers cocked, and the same number of people would likely still be dead.

    You’re quite the pessimist, aren’t you?

    Let me repeat what has already been said in a number of places, including here: A criminal looking to kill a lot of people and go out in a blaze of glory is going to look for EASY targets. If concealed carry was legal in the state of IL, and particularly on college campuses, don’t you think that he might have thought twice before choosing that as his target? I mean, really, think about this: if you’re trying to hurt someone, wouldn’t you rather that person not fight back? And wouldn’t your chances of successfully hurting them be much greater if it was guaranteed that they wouldn’t be able to match your firepower? And while I’m listing hypothetical situations, don’t you think that if you weren’t sure about the armament status of a particular location, you’d be less likely to want to open fire there, regardless of your suicidal tendencies? That’s a key word: suicidal. Regardless of the death wish, these guys wanted to kill themselves, not be killed by others. Key to these cases, as well, is the fact that they killed themselves when it was apparent that someone known to have a gun (cop) was coming to cash their check. It does no good for their notoriety to be killed by someone else. Hence why they have, and will continue to, choose areas to attack which are nearly guaranteed to be filled with people who are forbidden by law to carry a firearm. Rachel said, They generally kill themselves anyway – seems like the major thing that would change would be their letting someone else do that for them., and the previous paragraph is directed at her, as well.

    look towards the sound? Right.

    Um, actually, that IS the natural tendency, especially if you’re unfamiliar with a noise – and, as you accurately point out, there aren’t a lot of people who know what a close-range shot sounds like, and they’ll likely turn to look what direction the sound is coming from, even (or rather, especially) if it startles them. I still find myself doing this if I’m outside and hear a loud noise. I may crouch and get ready to run, but I still look at where the noise comes from to make sure running is what I actually need to do. It’s INSTINCT. “Duck and cover” is a learned behavior. Watch children when something happens – until they know exactly what’s happening or are dragged into safety by an adult, they will stand there and cry and look around to try to identify what’s going on. If you don’t know what’s happening, how are you to know how to react? Even your dog knows this.

    I know it seems like I’m picking on you, but you seem to not mind arguing, judging by your language, and you HAVE made quite a few comments.

    Separate point by dolphin: That may or may not be true, but either way it’s a meaningless “fact.” I’d bet you fewer people die in Ferrari crashes each year than, say, in Fords. Does that mean Ferrari’s are far safer cars? Shooting such as these haven’t happened at 99.99% of all college campuses. To draw conclusions based on the fact that they haven’t happened at some tiny subcategory of these schools is impossible.

    That is so completely and totally irrelevant and incorrect that I’m loathe to even look at it or address it because it irritates me, but because I feel so strongly about it, I’m going to answer, anyway. If you’re saying that a small sample isn’t representative of anything, then you’re completely discounting nearly ALL scientific research that has EVER been done. Granted, there are instances where the population shouldn’t be judged on the actions of a few, and really, if you want to take that argument, then you shouldn’t lump all gun rights advocates in the same group as the psychopaths who go into carefully chosen areas of unarmed people and kill as many as they can before killing themselves, just for the headline that they’ll get.

    Arguing about the ratio of car accidents to types of cars, and comparing that to gun rights is laughable, at best. I could say that more people are killed with Glocks than any other weapon, so they should be outlawed completely, but really, it’s not that the Glocks are more dangerous, it’s just that they’re inexpensive and easy to obtain (like your Fords), and are thus more likely to be bought and re-sold to a more criminal market. Also, because you don’t necessarily have to have a permit to purchase a gun (Tennessee is a good example of this – I bought my gun several months before I took my first safety course), people who only have a few hundred dollars and want to keep one around the house “just in case’ – or, you know, go shoot up a school – can get one fairly easily, unless they’ve been committed to a mental institution, which is harder to do (or have done to someone) than you’d think, or have committed a felony. But then, the ones who’ve already committed a crime aren’t going to have much of a problem breaking more laws to obtain the gun they really want.

    You said before you went into your car comparison that the facts were “meaningless”, and yes, yours are in this particular situation. Mine, however, aren’t. But hey, we’ll run with it, since you brought it up: Accidents happen with cars because of irresponsible driving and carelessness. Hey, guess what? So do accidents with guns. Oh, and you can kill people with cars, knives, box cutters, or any heavy blunt object. Should we ban kitchen utensils and cast iron skillets? No, because that would be silly, wouldn’t it?

    To all: Guns are tools. You can scoff at this point all you like, but the guns themselves are NOT the problem, and you’re NOT going to be able to pinpoint every person who might have a problem so that you can solve it before something like this happens. It’s a nice thought, but it’s simply not realistic. Particularly when you take into account what I pointed out above, which is that if someone who’s got issues that would keep them from obtaining a gun legally still wants that gun, they can get it another way.

    I realize the futility of trying to place some of these arguments, but seeing as how I got “permission” to continue this, and because there were some points that hadn’t been made yet, I figured I’d make one last big “hurrah” regarding my point before I went back to just writing about this sort of thing in my own blog.

    Lastly, a thought for the day: In order to maintain peace, you have to be prepared for war. Fights are not won by sitting and hoping that you don’t get hurt. Then again, if people aren’t sure what you’re capable of, you’re likely to not get into fights in the first place.

  30. I want to expand on one thing I said before, regarding brandishing a firearm.

    A person who has a carry permit and has a firearm on them is expected by law to maintain a higher standard of behavior than an unarmed person. It could even be argued that they need to maintain a higher standard of behavior than even a police officer, since a private citizen with a permit and a firearm will not have the backing of the Police Union, the Police Department, and a Union provided attorney, should they misbehave while in possession of a firearm. A person who is carrying a firearm only gets to misbehave ONCE while carrying that firearm, and then they lose the permit, possibly for good, and they face severe felony charges.

    Tell someone you have a gun in a manner that could be found threatening, you’re under arrest.

    Show someone your holstered firearm in a manner that could be considered hostile, you’re under arrest.

    Draw your firearm without a credible threat, you’re under arrest.

    Get into an easily avoidable physical altercation while in possession of a firearm(e.g. allowing a verbal disagreement to escalate to a physical one), you are under arrest.

    When I carry my sidearm, I am required by law to make every reasonable effort to avoid confrontations or conflicts. In essence, my carry permit allows me to carry a firearm concealed, but in return, I must turn the other cheek whenever possible. I can not give someone a piece of my mind in the parking lot, I can not belt the guy who is talking smack about my mother, I can not go drinking and get into a fight (in most states, you can’t even be around alcohol in public if you are armed). I have to be better than a model citizen, I have to an exemplary citizen.

    Deciding that adult students are incapable of understanding this responsibility is a great way of saying most students are idiots and not worthy of any measure of trust or respect. A student that goes through the trouble and expense to carry, who understands the responsibility they are accepting, are more than likely to get the training and do their level best to keep training, so don’t be so disparaging of them, Mack and Dolphin, chances are they’ll be more of a help than a hinderance. If nothing else, a gunman hearing a round fired in return, even if it is fired over his head, will focus his attention somewhere else long enough for others to escape of find better cover, or even allow his attention to be diverted long enough for someone else to tackle him (read up on the Salt Lake City Mall Shooting, since that is pretty much what happened, the off duty cop drew the shooters fire).

    Also keep in mind, many of our servicemen and women are coming back from war with a GI Bill and combat experience. Hell, if they want to carry on campus, I say let them. At least they stand a chance of recognizing the danger long before anyone else.

    As for how to stop kids from deciding to go down in a blaze of glory, maybe we could stop splashing their names all over the world every time it happens. We all remember the killers names, but few recall the victims. Maybe we could stop portraying firearms as symbols of power on TV and in the movies. When I see some cheesy action movie with the hero having some homoerotic love scene with his gun, or gangbangers shooting sideways and actually hitting something, it makes me cringe at how firearms are represented. Makes me miss watching MacGyver on TV.
    Or maybe we could ask parents and doctors to stop medicating our kids into oblivion and start teaching that behavior problems can be solved without heavy duty drugs. That ADHD is over diagnosed and maybe your kids are just bored. That depression in teenagers is normal, as is anger and violence, and denying them, or telling our kids that these are bad emotions and they need to get rid of them, is not teaching them how to master these emotions in a healthy way.
    I’m not pulling a Tom Cruise and saying all Mental Health drugs are bad, but that parents and doctors really need to make them the last resort, not the first or even the fifth.
    Start getting parents to actually raise their kids and be active in their lives, and maybe violence like this will be something that only occurs every few years, instead of every few months.

  31. FWIW, I was a college freshman when I was 30.

    Lunatics will always be among us. I blanch at the thought of being prevented from making a calm, measured and effective response to their insanity. CCW is a very orderly way to level the playing field.

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  33. If you’re serious about self-protection and exercising your right to carry, believe me, you’ll take the time to properly dress to conceal your weapon.

    That gigantic IF is kinda my point. For the moment, let’s put aside our disagreement on whether all gun-owners (or even most gun owners) are highly trained professionals (frankly I think operating on that assumption hurts your case more than it helps it, but no matter). You’re operating on the assumption that allowing college kids to carry deadly weapons means that most of them would. I’m saying I suspect very few would. If college kids won’t take the time to put on their clothes in the morning, what makes you think they’ll take the time to put on a gun? Those who are “serious about self-protection and exercising your right to carry” might, but on the average campus that makes up a such a small amount of the population that its hardly worth mentioning. This poll indicates that only 6% of those aged 18-14 even own a pistol (I didn’t count rifle and shotgun owners because such weapons can’t be easily concealed). Even assuming that colleges are representative of the 18-24 population as a whole (and they’re not) and all gun owners are “serious about self-protection and exercising your right to carry” (which, I know for a fact to be false, but I’ll give it to you for the sake of this discussion), you still only have 6% of the population with weapons and that’s gonna leave most classrooms unarmed.

    That is so completely and totally irrelevant and incorrect that I’m loathe to even look at it or address it because it irritates me, but because I feel so strongly about it, I’m going to answer, anyway.

    I’m sorry demanding proper usage of basic research methods bugs you, but seriously, if you’re going to be making false statements in an open forum, you ought to expect someone to call you out on it.

    If you’re saying that a small sample isn’t representative of anything, then you’re completely discounting nearly ALL scientific research that has EVER been done.

    I’ll happily discount all sample-based “science” that doesn’t take statistical significance into account. As would any scientist or person with a basic stats course under their belt.

    Mass shootings at colleges are a statistical anomaly. Despite the media attention that surrounds them, when you consider the number of mass shootings versus the number of operating college in the United States, makes the chances of a mass shooting happening on a college campus statistically 0. You can’t rationally draw conclusions between subgroups about an event that is so rare as to statistically not happen at all. And even if you could (and since you’ve apparently never taken a stats course you’ll have to just trust me when I say you can’t), there are so many other variables that come into play (school size and student population demographics would be two biggies), that drawing any kind of snap causal inference would be ludicrous.

    Should we ban kitchen utensils and cast iron skillets? No, because that would be silly, wouldn’t it?

    Well, Squeaky, I’ll make you a deal. I’ll buy you the gun of your choice if you can quote where in this thread I argued for governmental banning ANY kind of weapon. Otherwise, you can take your strawman and use him for target practice somewhere else.

    Dolphin, chances are they’ll be more of a help than a hinderance.

    So you say. I don’t agree. If it were so black and white, there’d be no disagreement.

  34. dolphin said: “If college kids won’t take the time to put on their clothes in the morning, what makes you think they’ll take the time to put on a gun?”

    Perhaps most won’t. But I distinctly recall as a student at UC Berkeley in the late ’80s and early ’90s that after the below hostage incident several students of my acquaintance started carrying concealed handguns on campus, even though they were well aware that as California residents and UC students it was completely unlawful for them to do so and they risked expulsion and prison time.

    I would imagine the same is occurring right now on campuses across Illinois, despite Illinois’ restrictive laws.

    http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C0CEFDC163DF93BA1575AC0A966958260

  35. Dolphin,

    Why do you assume those who carry are kids, I started college at the age of 23 as a disabled veteran. Although WI does not allow CCW, I always had a weapon on me, even if it was just my walking stick, because I knew our campus was not as safe as many envisioned. There were assaults, and rapes, and muggings, and not all of my classes were at times or in locations that were the most conducive to safe travel. I carried a weapon in the military and managed to never shoot anyone, why would my release into the college environment have made any difference.

    And 6% of the population having a CCW may not provide for coverage in every classroom, but 6% more than likely outnumbers the police by a good margin on any good sized campus, so it would represent a potential first responder force. Hell, allow CCW on campus and have the campus police provide training to the students. I mean, if my Fire Department can trust me to be a volunteer first responder after 24 hours of training, why can’t Campus Police offer appropriate training to students who choose to carry. Campus police could use that to weed out the potential vigilantes and offer permits only to those who demonstrated an ability to be responsible.

    6% also gives lie to the idea that you’d have a dozen CCW holders having a shootout with a shooter.

    You guys forget that CCW holders are almost always the older adults, stop deciding that if CCW becomes available on campus, that tons of dumbass kids will try to get a gun and permit.

  36. I would imagine the same is occurring right now on campuses across Illinois, despite Illinois’ restrictive laws.

    Which, in my mind, is another negative. I’m guessing kids who go out a grab a gun as a knee-jerk reaction to fear are the least likely to get proper training and the most likely to misuse the weapon.

    Why do you assume those who carry are kids

    Experience. I recall seeing very few older folks in my classes. Nearly the entire student body was 17-22. Sure there was the occasional older person, but we’re talking in generalities here.

    I carried a weapon in the military and managed to never shoot anyone, why would my release into the college environment have made any difference.

    Very well may not have made any difference. Again, we’re back to your assumption that all gun-owners have military-grade training with their weapons. I simply don’t think that’s even remotely accurate.

    6% more than likely outnumbers the police by a good margin on any good sized campus, so it would represent a potential first responder force.

    First of all, let me say that, if I wasn’t clear, I think the 6% number is too high for the average college campus (I simply did not have the raw data to offer any other number). 6% of 18-24 own a pistol. Surely only a sub-percentage of those carry their weapon on a regular basis. “Straight-out-of-high-school” college graduates are out by 22, which means 2 years of the age group aren’t in our sample. Of 18-22 year olds, not all go to college and I suspect that gun ownership is tilted towards those who remain at home or go straight into work. I think 6% is very high.

    Secondly, whatever the number, the idea that kids with guns ought to be held up as some kind of “first responder force” is disturbing. I’m sympathetic to arguments about self-defense, etc. but encouraging some plain clothed vigilante justice force to come running when ever they hear a loud bang strikes me as dangerous. You get a bunch of kids with guns arriving at the scene, and nobody (not your vigilante force, and not the police) knows exactly who they ought to be shooting at.

    6% also gives lie to the idea that you’d have a dozen CCW holders having a shootout with a shooter.

    Ahh, yes. Remind me again where I authored that “lie?”

    You guys forget that CCW holders are almost always the older adults, stop deciding that if CCW becomes available on campus, that tons of dumbass kids will try to get a gun and permit.

    And here is the problem with these conversations. You have just proven beyond the shadow of a doubt that you’re responding without having read a word I’ve written.

    My ENTIRE POINT rests on the assumption that there won’t be “tons of dumbass kids” getting guns if a college decides to change their policy.

    What you don’t realize, because you’re too busy talking past me to get around to talking with me, is that I agree that, in some cases, were a firearm in the classroom, in the hands of a trained shooter, the tragedy could be lessened. But there are also risks to allowing firearms onto campus. Accidents happen, even among trained users. If you allow guns in dorm rooms, then you are (in most cases) giving access to the weapons to not only the legal gun owner but potentially to their roommate(s) as well. When school administrators are weighing gun policy options, they have to take those risks into consideration and weigh it against the possible advantages of what might happen IF a student happens to flip out and tr to shoot up a classroom, and IF one of the few students who would actually be carrying a gun was in that particular classroom, and IF that student in that classroom had the training and clarity of mind to properly handle him or herself in that situation.

    If they allow guns on campus, and a mass shooting never happens, they still have to worry about accidents, thefts, and misuse. If they prohibit them and a mass shooting never happens, they haven’t risked anything.

    If they allow guns on campus, and a mass shooting DOES happen, they still have to worry about accidents, thefts, and misuse, offset only by the chance, that if a certain student happens to be in just the right spot at just the right time, they might be able to reduce a tragedy. If they prohibit them and a mass shooting DOES happen, they have risked missing out on that same slight chance of reducing the tragedy slightly.

    Reasonable people can disagree on whether the costs outweigh the benefits on either position, but not if they hold to their viewpoint with such a religious fervor that they refuse to even recognize how another reasonable person could reach the opposite conclusion.

  37. Sorry Dolphin, not all of that was aimed at you, I should have done a better job at differentiating my points to those who I meant to target.

    Now, what point are you trying to make, either you are worried about immature college kids getting guns and permits and being irresponsible, or you are saying that not enough responsible adults will carry to make it worth the trouble. Where I went to school, I’d say about 10-15% of the undergrad population were older students, and of course all of the graduate population was older. Are you saying that the majority of a college population are the hard partying kids, and not the serious adults? When I was in school, the reality was that there were just as many adults (i.e. 21 and demonstrably responsible) as kids on a campus. The numbers would likely be skewed to the younger side if the campus does not have a graduate program (mine did).

    And I was not talking about a vigilante student force (now who isn’t reading), but rather that the campus police could work with the students who choose to carry in order to provide the information and training in order to maximize safety. If we trust the cops to carry, why can’t we trust the cops to train the students who choose to carry. Such students would not be tasked with hunting out a shooter, but they could be trained to defend themselves and others if the shooter arrives, as well as they would be trained on what kind of information the police will need to know as they arrive on scene (eyes inside who know what they are looking for). I’m sorry if you think my position is flawed, but I hold that regular, everyday citizens, who want to be able to help, should be offered whatever training they need to be able to help, whether it is in first aid, CPR, disaster response, or defensive response. Once upon a time, this was information everyone was expected to know. I hold that the benefit of such a cadre of students would not only benefit the campus, but those skills would be transferred to society as a whole as the students graduated and moved on. We are only made safer by having more people who are trained to respond to emergencies.

    Regarding dorms:

    Most adult students don’t live in dorms. Some do, yes, but in my experience, dorms were for freshman and sophomores not upperclassmen and returning adult students. Dorms could alleviate fears of a student getting a hold of a gun from a roommate by requiring that a student provide their own gunsafe and use it.

    A campus has numerous issues it would need to deal with if CCW was allowed, but if it is not even willing to begin discussing these issues, or looking at how the campuses that do allow CCW do it, how can any reasonable rules be decided upon. It is just too easier to say no, and then pray nothing bad happens rather than do the work and offer the training to create a volunteer force.

  38. Now, what point are you trying to make, either you are worried about immature college kids getting guns and permits and being irresponsible, or you are saying that not enough responsible adults will carry to make it worth the trouble.

    Actually both, sorta. Permitting guns on campus could lead to both immature college kids and responsible adults bringing guns on campus. I think the numbers of both would be incredibly small.

    From the perspective of a college administrator, I’d be inclined to see the former as posing a threat greater than the benefit offered by the latter. The reason being is because the former could cause the issues that it would cause at any time and under most circumstances. The latter could only offer benefit in the case that there was a situation in which (a) they would be needed, that is to say a flipped out homicidal student, (b) the responsible armed student was in the classroom that was attacked, and (c) the responsible armed student actually had his or her gun on him or her at that moment. And even if all that criteria is met, it’s not a guarantee that it will do any good. Therefore, looking at it as a college administrator attempting to decide campus policy, I personally would tend towards the decision to prohibit guns on campus, simply because the costs are more likely to rear their heads than are the benefits.

    Are you saying that the majority of a college population are the hard partying kids, and not the serious adults?

    In my experience as an RA for 3 years in college, that’s an accurate assessment.

    And I was not talking about a vigilante student force (now who isn’t reading)

    I read what you wrote, but I think the confusion happened with the words “first responder.” The majority of my dad’s side of the family are EMS workers and I spent a fair bit of time growing up hanging out in a firehouse. To me, “first responder” implies being first to respond to a call. If you’re talking about simply training people “what to do if you find yourself in this situation” that’s very different than what I would call a first responder.

    Most adult students don’t live in dorms. Some do, yes, but in my experience, dorms were for freshman and sophomores not upperclassmen and returning adult students.

    I went to a smaller private college, and I know some of the larger public schools have space issues, so their situations are somewhat different, but it was certainly not uncommon (in fact, it was more common than not) at my school for students to live either a residence hall, or college-owned house or apartment for their entire 4 year career.

  39. Dolphin,

    You’ve hit upon one thing that has to factor in to any discussion of CCW on a campus, size. A small college will have an entirely different set of concerns than a major university and such concerns are extremely important.

    Also, I come from a Navy background, where everyone crosstrained as much as possible, and not just within your job, but within any other job you could get training for. For example, every sailor knows 1st Aid, CPR, firefighting, damage control, basic firearms, and along the way you pick up dozens of additional skills. Any sailor that wanted to get promoted took as much training as possible.

    Even today I am taking training for CERT, as are dozens of others in my class. If you have a campus that offered an advanced handgun course as a pre-req to carry, I wonder how much enrollment it would get? I know on my campus, all of the elective maartial arts classes were filled every semester, including fencing & kendo. A handgun course could teach students safety, tactics, how to be a good observer in an emergency, how to communicate to police, etc. During an emergency, such students could assist faculty and staff during a crisis as well as providing a trained armed response should they face a shooter. Such students would be an asset rather than a liability, or worse, a loose cannon.

    Again, offer the training, start a program, see how many want it. We can not learn what actual benefit can be realized if we never try to do it.

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  41. I may be wrong, but I’m fairly certain concealed weapons are allowed in Tennessee. How much crime are we thinking that has deterred here? After all, that woman that got raped in Bicentennial Park could have been carrying a gun, the rapist had no idea whether or not she did….

  42. W

    Do you know the rapist had no idea? Was he caught and interviewed?

    I ask because sometimes is is obvious who is carrying and who is not. If you are wearing Daisy Dukes and a bikini top, or shorts and a wife-beater, it is highly unlikely you are carrying. Also, body language says a lot about your preparedness for self-defense, and a predator can read that.

    But overall, unless carry is widespread, it has little deterrent effect on crime. It is also difficult to realize a deterrent effect if defensive use of a firearm rarely makes the news. It does, however, provide a person the opportunity to defend themselves against a violent attack should they choose to carry.

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  44. Here’s one thing that’s missing. Should PUBLIC colleges have the right to restrict carry if CCW is allowed by the state? I say no. Private colleges are private property. In Richmond, the state university cannot prevent me from crossing the property, but it can prevent me from being a student or firing me if I’m an employee.
    2nd) Yes, 18 year old can be immature. Too bad. THEY ARE ADULTS. They should be equal under the law to every other adult. If they cannot be held to the same responsibility, then we need to change the age of majority. Too many of our “kid” are commanding others in combat. Many “kid” civilians raise families, etc.
    Let any adult that wishes to be armed, arm themselves.
    Shall not be infringed-how hard is that? Concealed carry demands that you get trained to carry. At least these men and women will have a chance.

  45. Should PUBLIC colleges have the right to restrict carry if CCW is allowed by the state?

    Should PUBLIC courthouses have the right to restrict carry if CCW is allowed by the state? Even in public places, we have to set rules for behavior. As a tax-payer you ought to have a say in those rules but I pay taxes too. Shouldn’t I have as equal a say as you?

    Shall not be infringed-how hard is that? Concealed carry demands that you get trained to carry.

    Contradictory statements. Clearly “shall not be infringed” is providing difficulty if you’re “demand[ing] that you get trained to carry.” That’s the thing. When it comes down to it, only the pure anarchists believe that firearms should be 100% unregulated. The rest of us simply disagree about where the line is.

    At least these men and women will have a chance.

    Without guns they have no chance? Geez I managed to survive 7 years of higher education without a gun. Am I an anomaly?

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  47. Actually, Open carry in Virginia is allowed without training. Only CCW requires certification. So open carry, in Virginia is infringed only in universities if you are a student or employee. As a citizen, I am allowed entry to the property. I am only restricted from carry in the General Legislature, schools, churches, and courthouses. Concealed carry is not allowed in restaurants that serve alchohol, but, open carry is. Yes, there needs to be some rules decided by the populace. Courthouses make a good case for denying entry to armed citizens. Churches and schools, not so much, as possible allies of criminals being tried, are not a threat.
    And the General Legislature should allow carry inside the building. But the delegates make the rules for their chambers.
    And your comment about surviving 7 years… fortunately you were not one of the 32 at VT. If even the teacher that threw himself in front of Cho had been armed, less students would have been killed.
    So, no, without a defense, you would not have a chance against an armed assailant in a “defense free” zone.

  48. fortunately you were not one of the 32 at VT.

    No, but I knew folks in those classrooms. You think I take this lightly. You’re wrong.

    Courthouses make a good case for denying entry to armed citizens. Churches and schools, not so much, as possible allies of criminals being tried, are not a threat.

    And you see, I think there is a good case for denying entry to armed students in schools. That’s the point. My tax dollars are as worthy as yours. I get a voice too. That’s why there has to be discussion. You simply walking in and declaring yourself right doesn’t work in this case.

    you would not have a chance against an armed assailant

    Speak for yourself. Please don’t confuse me and you.

    in a “defense free” zone.

    I’ve not heard of any school that required a “defense free” zone.

    You’re confusing “defense” and “gun.” You ought to click through the trackback above and read my post on the topic. When you become so fixated on one solution being the only possible solution you’ll miss out on others when they present themselves. THAT leads to far more bloodshed than either letting guns on campus or leaving them off. I can defend myself without a gun. I can defend myself with a gun. I can escape a confrontation and not have to defend myself at all. There are infinite options on how to react in any given moment, and getting fixated on it having to be one way and only one way is far more dangerous than ANY single option is on it’s own.

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