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Friday, November 27, 2020

Opinion

Campus carry does not make this school safer


WEB-Gun-Jimmy Moreland-1

Campus carry goes into effect August 2016 | Jimmy Moreland/The Cougar

Campus carry is a fruitless exercise for a false sense of heightened security.

This was proven this year when a terrible mass shooting occurred at Umpqua Community College in Oregon. Nine people were fatally shot on campus by another student, and nine others were wounded.

Oregon has allowed weapons on campuses since a court case ruled that public colleges and universities can only determine where on campus a gun can be prohibited or where to have a “gun-free zone.”

During the terrible mass shooting, John Parker Jr., an Umpqua student, had a (legally) concealed weapon, and chose not to be involved.

He told MSNBC that he did not want to be considered a gunman participating in the shooting himself by authorities. He chose the smart option to let the authorities do their jobs instead of putting himself in danger.

Not only does this disprove the idea of “a good guy with a gun” but also the idea that campus carry protects students.

Of course some students are not against the idea of guns on campus, but just not in the hands of students.

“I feel that only professors should be able to carry, not students,” psychology senior Katie King said. “There’s been so many shootings lately that it doesn’t matter whether it’s legal or illegal (to have guns on campus).”

This attitude about campus carry is correct in its assessment. Campus carry does not make me or any other student I talk to feel safer on campus.

Campus carry will not prevent mass shootings from occurring. The “good guy with a gun” idea is not only an inadequate reason for campus carry, but a dangerous one.

Authorities on campus should be the only ones with weapons to protect the students because it is their job and they are the ones trained to protect students.

I would advise students who bring their weapons when the law goes into effect to be wary about when to use them if an emergency were to occur.

Call the police, and get to safety. Better yet, do not bring your weapon at all. There is a good chance that in the event of a shooting emergency, nobody will mistake you for a shooter if you do not have a gun in the first place.

John Parker Jr. made the right choice in his situation, and you should too.

Opinion columnist Sam Pichowsky is a political science sophomore and may be reached at [email protected]

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