Are Armed Students Safer?
Guest Post By: Hunting Mark.
To answer the question “are armed students safer? Hunting Mark takes a look at guns, college-age adults and crime.
If you compare using a gun legally and using a gun legally, the results are clear. The problem is not guns. The problem is criminals. FBI studies show many more people are attacked every year by criminals using something other than gun compared to criminals using a gun.
Using a gun in self-defense is a tiny fraction of reported gun use in the US and an even smaller fraction of the shootings in the US.
The Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta estimates guns are used in self-defense between 500,000 and three million times a year. The widespread is because so many instances of using a gun in self-defense are never reported.
Opponents say “a good guy with a gun” cannot make a difference in a shooting situation. They point out shootings happen in seconds. Also, they correctly point out more shooters are stopped by unarmed civilians than by armed civilians.
On the first point, the average response time for law enforcement is more than two minutes. The average response time for a “good guy with a gun” is seconds.
On point two, the question is: how many shooting situations had a “good guy with a gun”. shootings without the gun carrier? No reliable information exists for that.
Age and Maturity
Someone will say college students are too young to carry a gun. At 18, a person is an adult, and many 18-year-olds enter the military and carry guns as part of their regular duty.
Five states allow 18-year-olds to become law enforcement officers. Other states allow people to become officers at ages 19 to 22.
In both cases, someone will say these people have training on using their guns and regular practice and continuing education.
Does that training really matter? Law enforcement officers shoot thousands of people each year. In fact, the US leads the world by a huge margin in law enforcement shootings. On the other side, criminals shoot people in greater numbers than law enforcement, according to FBI stats.
In states with easy-to-obtain carry permits, more civilians carry guns than law enforcement officers.
Who Can Carry?
At the high school level, most students are not old enough to legally carry handguns, unless they are at an organized shooting event. 4-H and JROTC stage gun competitions for middle and high school-age students around the nation.
Some states allow college students to be on campus and armed. The latest update from Concealed Campus has this:
- 11 states allow concealed carry on campus
- 16 states prohibit concealed carry on campus
- 23 states allow the college to decide
- A few states require additional training before students can carry on campus.
Yes or No?
The answer is yes. If college students receive decent training, they should be allowed to carry guns on campus. The numbers bear that out.
Our thanks to Hunting Mark for this thought-provoking contribution to the debate surrounding student safety.
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All opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest contributor.