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Packing Heat on Campus

Gun on BookLast April, a bill was passed by the state legislature that would allow guns to be carried on campus. However, Governor Jan Brewer vetoed the legislation after finding the bill too ambiguous. Now, SB1474 plans to accomplish what last years bill failed to do: allow guns on college campuses.

As an AZCentral article describes the bill as requiring:

…public universities and community colleges to allow anyone age 21 or older with a concealed-carry permit to carry a gun on campus. The schools can keep the guns out of buildings, stadiums and classrooms if they provide secure gun lockers.

The committee also passed a bill that would loosen restrictions on carrying guns in public buildings, including city halls, libraries or municipal swimming pools.

President John Haeger takes issue with the bill stating in Northern Arizona News that:

“I just think it gets in the way of our basic mission,” Haeger said. “There’s not a problem here. Students don’t want guns, faculty doesn’t want guns [and] administrators don’t want guns. And so this is entirely about somebody’s ideology.”

Also, those gun lockers that the university needs to provide to each building if they don’t want guns in that building come at $400 a pop. Additional funding is not being provided by the proposed legislation.

According to InsideNAU The Arizona Board of Regents and all three universities have come out against the proposed legislation.

Proponents of the bill feel that it is merely an affirmation of their second amendment rights and that they should be able to take guns where they please for their own protection. A Tempe resident is quoted in the AZCentral article as saying:

“We are dealing with the subject of a fundamental right to self-defense,” Bartow said. He took issue with suggestions that adults younger than age 25 weren’t capable of acting responsibly. “None of our other fundamental rights are infringed upon just because we’re under 25.”

What are your thoughts? Should people be able to carry concealed weapons onto campus? Let us know in the comments below!