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Monday, January 3, 2011

Twisting Words to Make a Point

Virginia Tech shooting survivor and gun control advocate Colin Goddard has an Op/Ed on CNN's web site calling for colleges to remain self-defense free zones.  To his credit, Goddard begins the piece by listing the main failures in the system that allowed Virginia Tech to happen - Tech failed to notify students of the original shootings earlier that morning (previously cited by USDOE as a failure on Tech's part), weaknesses in the mental health system in addressing Cho's problems, and the courts, who failed to appropriately note a judge's ruling that could have prevented Cho from purchasing his firearms.  But, he eventually gets around to what he and his employers at the Brady Campaign view as the real culprit in the mass shooting, and indeed most mass shootings - the lack of background checks on private firearm sales, especially those at gun shows.

Goddard finishes his OP/Ed by pulling a 12 year-old quote from Wayne LaPierre out of context to make his point - that if the head of the NRA says there should be zero-tolarance for guns at schools, then carry on college and university campuses is a bad idea.

The head of the National Rifle Association, Wayne LaPierre, said it well after the Columbine tragedy in 1999: "We believe in absolutely gun-free, zero-tolerance, totally safe schools. That means no guns in America's schools, period ... with the rare exception of law enforcement officers or trained security personnel. We believe America's schools should be as safe as America's airports. You can't talk about, much less take, bombs and guns onto airplanes. Such behavior in our schools should be prosecuted just as certainly as such behavior in our airports is prosecuted."
Never mind that LaPierre was talking about K-12 schools.  College students are adults and most states require concealed carry permit holders to be 21, meaning most students would be juniors or seniors before they would even qualify.  The point is, if a 21 year-old is able to carry concealed if they are anywhere else other than a college campus, then why not allow that same person to do so on campus?

Mike Adams had different message last week over on Townhall.com.  He later talked about his article, Full Metal Yellow Jacket ,with NRANews host Cam Edwards:



Adams' message is, keeping law abiding students disarmed makes them a sitting duck at the mercy of any criminal that they may happen upon.

Texas is currently considering allowing concealed carry on it's college and university campuses. Goddard says proponents of carry on campus have not explained how such a law would be enforced and states that adding carry on campus will complicate how police deal with an active shooter on campus. What Goddard does not say is we have a model for college carry - Utah. There have been no incidents on the campuses in that state. Nor have there been any problems right here in Virginia on the campus of Blue Ridge Community College.

Texas has the votes to pass the legislation and Governor Perry has said he would sign the bill. Arizona may also consider college carry during its legislative session. Bills in Virginia so far have never gotten out of committee. My guess is once we have more states with successful college carry, Virginia may well join the list of those allowing carry on campus.

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