The debate over gun control in the United States recently received more fuel from an already heated fire, when rumors of a potential law that seeks to allow individuals to carry concealed weapons on college campuses surfaced.
In the United States, there are currently three types of gun carrying laws that states maintain for colleges and universities. The three laws are described as mandatory, in which guns are always allowed, institutional in which campuses can choose and non-permissive, in which guns are not allowed.
As of 2017, there will be eight states that will allow individuals to carry a registered gun on every college campus. Those eight states are Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Mississippi, Wisconsin, Oregon, Texas and Kansas.
Although these states are the only ones that allow concealed weapons on campus, there are 22 states that allow the universities to decide whether students and faculty can carry concealed weapons. This is a topic that has been heavily debated, mostly outside of the realm of college campuses. However, it is now up to college students to voice their own thoughts and opinions about it.
“Obviously, it is our Second Amendment right as U.S. citizens to bear arms, so [that is] already clear,” sad Molly Zimmerman, sophomore. “But when you bring up the thought of young, unpredictable and immature college students being allowed to carry actual weapons with them on college campuses and in classrooms, it gets to be a little [complicated].”
This seems to be the shared thought of the majority of college students, as many feel that they will be putting their safety in jeopardy.
“In a perfect world, guns would only hurt bad people when necessary,” said David Halprin, sophomore. “Unfortunately, in today’s day and age, you can never tell for sure what someone’s true intentions are.”
For those skeptical about this law, Sgt. Dina Padovan, a police officer in the state of Texas, reassured citizens that campus carry is safe.
“Concealed carry [means] you cannot see it,” said Padovan in an interview last August. “So [the] bottom line is: you should not see any guns here on this campus, unless [it is] a law enforcement officer.”
Whether individual agree or disagree with the right to carry concealed weapons on campus, it is important that students and faculty voice these opinions, so that leaders and lawmakers can work to create safety measures that are the best for all involved.