July 8, 2008

Texans To Arm Colleges

Get ready to pack some heat!!! That's right, the same legislature that brought you 3 years of refusal to fund state education and runs to Oklahoma to avoid voting is ready to do some actual work and allow Texans to bring firearms onto any college campus.

Apparently the law "addresses personal protection," says state Rep. Joe Driver, R-Garland, head of the House committee that considers gun bills. "People who do things [like the Virginia Tech shooting] basically know they are walking into a gun-free zone.

"They are cowards...facing people not allowed to fight back."

This sounds like a great idea, providing citizens protection from the crazies out there, and allowing justice to be presented and served from the cold steel of an 18 year old hand. The problem I have is that I already pay for protection on campus, its called the police. And not only do I have the police patrolling the area, there is a whole division, called campus police, that don't even leave the campus. Why would you give students guns on campus and not these guys?

I think there are other issues here as well besides the fact that we already have protective services on campus. One is the inherent irresponsibility of college students, surely a phenomena that transcends most cultural backgrounds. Give an 18 year old his own place with no parents or attendance policy and eventually mistakes in judgment will be made. This same lapse in judgment transforms from a fleeting indiscretion into a lifelong legacy with something as permanent as a gun shot as the vehicle. I don't trust the college kids in my town to drive safely, be able to cross the street properly, or know when their drinking is out of control.

Another concern I have is for the police. If you show up in a classroom with four people in a shootout who is bad guy? Should you just kill everyone who is shooting, or is there one attacker and 3 responders? Imagine being the cop that has to call the parents for that conversation. "Yes ma'am there was a shooting at your son's school today. Our snipers made a tactical decision to eliminate the targets without endangering our ground forces and unfortunately your son was deemed a target due to his possession of a firearm, have a good day."

Also, in my search so far I have found 4 shootings at college campuses since 1995, in that same period I count over 30 shootings at a high school campus. Would the same solution work for high schools then? Just allow all of the 15 year old freshmen to carry and that would end all of the violence at the school. Come on people, you owning a gun isn't going to stop someone who has decided that they are going to end their life and take people down with them. These are special cases, planned out and mapped for execution and the desired outcome. Every one of these shootings has ended in a hail of bullets from the police which ends the life of the shooter, the psychological deterrent that you may die cause other people have guns is obviously not a factor to these people.

For full disclosure I carry a concealed weapon and have been a proud gun-owner for years, but there is a reason we pay the police to protect us, because they have the training and experience to dole out protection in the form of lethal force, the same can't be said for teenagers.

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