Go to Washington D.C. Begin at the United State Holocaust Memorial Museum, then follow it by visiting the Library of Congress and finish the day getting on a flight at Reagan National Airport.
What is common at all of these places? Strict guidelines for admittance.
Personal item bins are pushed through a machine. Each individual walks through a metal detector. The process of walking through a door becomes a 15 minute facade.
This is similar to what K-State’s campus will become if the university plans to continue restrictions for concealed carry on campus. Running late to class? Metal detector. Want to get a coffee at the K-State Student Union? Metal detector. Going to a study session at Hale Library? Metal detector.
Kansas House of Representatives House Bill 2052 changed guidelines for concealed carry in public spaces. If government buildings choose to prohibit firearms, they are required to implement adequate security measures to ensure that firearms are not being carried in their building. If they do not install these safety measures, they cannot legally prohibit the carrying of weapons. This can include inserting metal detectors at the doors of every building and having security officials on standby.
K-State, along with the other Kansas Board of Regents schools, have gained an exception from the new conceal carry restriction. The KBOR applied for and were granted exception for up to four years. This allows K-State’s current weapons policy to remain unchanged until 2018, then security measures must be in place or concealed weapons cannot be restricted on campus.
This extension gives the university an opportunity to prepare for the new conceal carry requirements. It allows for a less chaotic training process for new employees that must be hired to abide by the new restrictions and for current employees to become educated in the new security protocol of the temporary exemption is definitely an advantage for all of K-State’s campus and their safety.
It is important for me to stress, as a person who was raised in the home of a county sheriff and 911 director, that I support the protection of the Second Amendment. I also support laws that will protect the citizens, especially in educational facilities.
Restriction of weapons at educational facilities is a no-brainer for public safety. I believe that guns on a college campus can only lead to devastating chaos because the requirements to conceal carry are few. I do not intend to put others safety in the hands of random people’s discretion towards firearms. Trusting people enough to leave laptops unattended is difficult, how can we trust people to posses a weapon that could kill?
A great number of the students I spoke with on campus said that the “only way to stop a unlawful gunman is with a law abiding gunman.” They believe that a person who had gone through the training to legally carry weapon would ultimately make campus safer.
It is necessary to understand the minor requirements a person must meet to receive a conceal carry handgun permit.
Those who attend a CCH class must pass a written exam with a perfect score. This is spot on, if a person wishes to be packing a firearm they should be completely aware of their weapon’s capabilities and the laws surrounding their right to bear arms.
Additionally, a person must participate in a shooting range exam by aiming at a 12 inch scoring ring, no further than 30 feet away and hit the ring a minimum of 18 out of 25 times. This requirement, in no way, makes me feel safe. Essentially, all CCH holders could have mere 72 percent efficiency when shooting, and still carry their guns freely. All the while, this “efficiency” is not even on a moving target.
If a lunatic gunman opened fire on campus, a person with an eight hour concealed carry class, and at worst, the equivalent to a graded “C” in aiming at an object will not be trained for the intensity of a high stake, open fire, situation.
While I understand some CCH holders are avid gun owners and frequent shooting ranges or hunt, I do not put my faith in random CCH carriers to protect. Knowing that some may not have fired a gun outside of their eight hour training is not comforting. An inadequately trained CCH holder could cause harm in the same way a criminal could on campus.
Cheyanna Colborn is a junior in pre-journalism. Please send all comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.