Friday, January 18, 2013

Young Republican Gunslingers at UT, OH

The world we live in gets crazier and crazier every day.  Watching Toledo News Now on channel 11 last night I learned that a group of students belonging to the Young Republicans organization of the University of Toledo is planning to submit a resolution to the University's student senate to convince the Ohio State Legislature to change state law to allow students at the school to carry concealed weapons on campus.

Students felt that if they were allowed to pack heat there would be no occurrence on UT grounds similar to the situation that happened in Newtown, Connecticut.  Of course, that happened at an elementary school and not at an institution of higher learning.  Even so, the students felt conditions at the University were unsafe.

Said Patrick Richardson, "It's a Second Amendment right, but more than that, it's an inherent human right to self-preservation that we feel every individual has.  Whether you're student or faculty, or on campus or not on campus, I feel those rights don't change."

A University Professor, Dr. Brian Patrick, suggests that evidence supports the fact that simply stating to a gunman like Adam Lanza (sporting a semi-automatic rifle), "I have a gun, leave me alone.") would be enough to have him walk away in fright for his own life.  Yeah.  And Japan would have surrendered before the end of 1945 without our having to drop two atomic bombs on them.

Ignoring the inherent dangers of an armed student body, UT Police Chief Jeff Newton's only concern seemed to be that student guns would be readily stolen.  "Theft is the most pervasive crime on campus and the density of people in our residence halls and on our campus makes combating theft uniquely difficult.  A stolen laptop has a negative effect on one person; a stolen gun can have a negative effect on many."

We at Table 54 believe that arming the student body at UT would lead to all sorts of calamities.  How easy would it be for almost every argument between students (individually or in groups) to be solved with their guns?  And what about the collateral damage that could happen every time one of those guns was fired?  How many dead students would it take for Ohio lawmakers to realize they made a terrible mistake by allowing guns to pervade on college campuses.

Does no one remember what happened at Kent State University on May 4, 1970?  Thirteen students were killed, not by other students, but by men of the Ohio National Guard.  These were not people untrained in the use of deadly weapons, but soldiers who knew how to handle and use the guns they carried.  What can be expected every time a student carrying a gun gets scared and fires at somebody they think is a threat to them?

The simple truth is that if Adam Lanza wouldn't have had access to his mother's Bushmaster .223 semi-automatic rifle there would have been no massacre in that Connecticut elementary school.  If James Eagan Holmes didn't have access to a Smith and Wesson M&P 15 assault rifle with a 100 round drum and a 12 gauge Remington 870 Express Tactical shotgun, sophisticated weapons for a 25 year-old, perhaps 12 people wouldn't have died and 58 others wouldn't have been injured at an Aurora, Colorado move theater.

Now imagine, in the case of Aurora, if some people in that theater audience would have been carrying guns of their own and they would have returned fire on Holmes, how many would have died and been injured in the heat of that exchange?  It is unlikely that Holmes would have ended up dead or wounded because hand guns are no match for semi-automatic rifles or shotguns.

Us guys at Table 54 went to school in the 1950s.  School doors weren't locked at any time during the day.  Heck, the doors in our homes weren't locked.  People didn't own the kind of fire power used in these massacres (nor was that kind of rifle available to be purchased for the most part) and people didn't fear their neighbors or their neighbor's kids.  My father owned a Savage 30.06 he used for deer hunting, a .22 rifle and a .10 gauge pump shotgun he also used for hunting.

And don't tell me about your Constitutional rights.  It's fine by me if you want to own a rifle available to people at the time our Constitution was ratified.  Those old flintlocks would be sufficient to protect your household as the Constitution states.  But don't tell me that the framers of the Constitution had in mind the kind of semi-automatic weapons available to crazies today with 100 round drums capable of taking out a whole infantry squad of well-armed warriors.  Some times people need to use a little bit of common sense when talking about the Constitution.

Agree, disagree, or whatever.  Your comments are welcome at Table 54.  Pull up that empty chair and say your piece.


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