Consensus: Concealed Carry

Yet again, gun rights advocates are trying to push the Ga. General Assembly to pursue legislation that would legalize concealed carry on and around college campuses in the state.

In their fervor to advocate for gun rights in every arena, many such supporters have glossed over the fact that there are some areas in which an individual’s right to carry directly clashes with the safety of the community on the whole. College campuses do not mirror the world at large and, as such, can’t be expected to work under the same rules. An environment where raging hormones and over-consumption of alcohol abound — particularly one as tightly packed as college housing — can’t be expected to be as level headed as the general population.

More, those fighting for concealed carry on campuses seem to be taking advantage of a heightened awareness of safety on campus to forward their agenda. While an uptick in crime has been noted around campus, there is no data to suggest that any of these crimes could have been prevented by students carrying firearms. As such, it seems that such advocates are simply taking this as a chance to mount another push for concealed carry on campus, regardless of whether or not it would actually help reduce crimes.

Opponents of the legislation are strangely absent from discussions. While the College Republicans have wasted no time in supporting the bill, the College Democrats have remained too silent on the matter. More, individuals who are happy with the status quo need to realize that it is up to them to protect it. If the only ones arguing at campus open forums are the proponents of concealed carry —as has been the case in the past — then the debate is skewed against the silent majority. The majority of students oppose the legislation, but, unless they make their voices heard, legislators will only hear those of the extremely vocal minority.