Legislation that could restrict guns on college campuses hadn't even been released to the public by late Monday, but already gun-rights advocates are lobbying to kill it.
An e-mail Gunowners of Utah (GOUtah) sent members calls on them to stop the "aging ex-hippies" at the University of Utah from restricting concealed weapons anywhere on campus.
"There's no reason why the University of Utah should be given any special perks with banning guns," said Charles Hardy, GOUtah's policy director. "There are no other state agencies that can ban guns without a legitimate, secure area."
The group's target is SB251, drafted as a compromise between pro-gun lawmakers and higher education officials. Sen. Greg Bell, R-Fruit Heights, the bill's sponsor, said it would allow faculty members to choose whether to allow guns in their offices, and it would regulate guns in dorms, requiring concealed-weapons permit holders to store their weapons in school-provided lockers.
I don't see why they need a solution to a problem that does not exist; can anyone tell me how many people have been threatened/injured/killed by legal gun owners on the campus?
But for many U. students, the bill doesn't go far enough.
Marko Mijic hopes the bill passes, but, ideally, the pre-pharmacy sophomore wishes guns could be banned.
"It would be nice to have guns prohibited on the entire campus," he said. "But I think this bill will help ensure the safety of faculty and the campus as a whole."
Jonah Petit, a junior in mechanical engineering, agrees.
"It could be harmful, even fatal to have guns on campus," he said.
Others, though, such as Marilee Larsen, a freshman, said she isn't worried about licensed gun-owners on campus. "If they're licensed, then they know how to handle a gun, and the U. is public property," she said.
Why is it harmful to have legal guns on campus, but no one seems to be worried about people who carry them illegally? It sounds more like a bunch of naive youngsters who have been well programmed by their parents/schools into knee-jerk reactions.
Just my opinion.