. . .Then Ban All The Bullets!
On the 10th Anniversary of the shootings at Columbine High School, and with the massacre at Virginia Tech and the horrific shootings in Binghamton, New York still too close in the rear view mirror, it seems Americans are no closer to coming to their senses with respect to gun control than we were a decade ago.
Indeed, in apparent bows to the savagery promoted by the likes of the NRA, we've abandoned efforts to close loopholes that allow almost anyone -- from the mentally ill to prison parolees -- to purchase hand guns and semiautomatic weapons, have senselessly allowed the assault weapon ban to lapse, and still cling to the wild west notion that Columbine and Virginia Tech scenarios could be prevented, or the carnage lessened, were we to arm every man, woman and child with a gun.
Indeed, Students for Concealed Carry on Campus is advocating the right to carry concealed weapons -- as a matter of self-defense -- on college campuses, the notion presumably holding sway that, like Wyatt Earp, if we all carried guns, either no one would use them, or, if someone burnished that Glock, we'd have the opportunity to shoot first and ask questions later.
Somehow, the thought of college students -- or even their professors -- walking around campus with concealed weapons doesn't do very much to put this blogger's mind at ease about the safety of his college-aged children -- or any other law-abidding citizen, for that matter.
We suppose an old-fashioned shoot out in the Student Union at High Noon would resolve all disputes; that a disgruntled Freshman, who thought he deserved an A rather than a C on that mid-term, wouldn't take it out on his prof or fellow classmates with an AK-47; and that there will be a collective lock-up of all guns before the weekly bar crawl.
Conjure up your own scenarios, if you dare.
Fortunately, more reasoned minds prevail on most college campuses, as espoused through organizations such as Students for Gun Free Schools.
Among the arguments made by Students for Gun Free Schools against concealed weapons on campus are:
(1) Concealed handguns would detract from a healthy learning environment.
(2) More guns on campus would create additional risk for students.
(3) Shooters will not be deterred by concealed carry permit holders.
(4) Concealed carry permit holders are not always “law-abiding” citizens.
(5) Concealed carry permit holders are not required to have any law enforcement training.
We agree on all counts.
In fact, other than law enforcement, concealed weapons should not be permitted to be carried anywhere in public, on or off campus.
Frankly, we wouldn't feel any safer at Roosevelt Field, Stop & Shop, or Target if we knew that the guy next to us might be carrying a concealed weapon. To the contrary, we'd be frightened out of our wits.
We don't rid our schools of drugs by permitting every student to take a toke in the cafeteria or sanctioning a crack club at recess. And we surely won't put an end to gun violence -- let alone reduce its devastating toll -- by allowing everyone to carry a gun.
Do you know what they would call a "Have Gun, Will Travel" America, where everyone carries a concealed weapon, ready to take aim at the next suspected aggressor (or simply someone who looked at the gun-toter askew)? IRAQ!
College campuses are safer without concealed weapons. The same goes for our communities at large.
Okay, we hear you Second Amendment buffs grumbling (as if any of you have ever read the Constitution). That old right to bear arms shtick. Fine. But the Constitution doesn't say what type of arms Americans shall have that right to bear.
Might we suggest arming every American with a peashooter -- a straw and a lifetime supply of spitballs. Then everyone, from college campuses to Main Street, could take his or her best shot.
Nope, I'll never give up my peashooter. Not until you pry it from my cold, dead hands!