Armed Students Are a Part of Doing Everything for Student Safety
Another school shooting at Virginia Tech and more calls for gun control everywhere. Calling for more of what doesn’t work betrays an underlying stubbornness which is incompatible with student safety.
By now, America is realizing a few things about gun control in general. It doesn’t work on criminals. It does work to grow chaos and tragedy for political purposes, that part that is becoming increasingly evident.
Gun control is the perfect example of lip service assurances proving to be absolutely counter to unbearable results. Gun control works at cross purposes to the interests of citizens, including adult college students. Like shortages and bans on incandescent light bulbs, these are not unavoidable results, they are social engineering tools.
This is because crisis mongering and self-appointed mandates are what are at work, really. Gun control’s objectives are not safety, they are there to restrain citizens from discovering and keeping their own independence as the best impeachment of bureaucracy. You might say that independence is the best kept secret of statism. If anyone should really experience it, most would prefer it because they would see how little a people needs big government. Independence must be discouraged at all costs, therefore. And that cost is too high.
Recent articles describe Presidential Candidate Rick Perry as ‘silly’ on second amendment. In fact, it is the bureaucracy who is silly for, time after time, no shooter was stopped by a single gun law. The viciousness of attacks on very patient and well articulated armed student propositions betray that cross purpose underneath, absolutely blocking every single attempt to re-discover adult independence within the college experience. It is as if you check your mind at the door as a condition of admission.
The bureaucracy, for all its assurances, cannot be there when it was needed most. Students -- and police -- die in ambush. So much for gun bans.
There are more than 20,000 gun laws on the books around this country. How many laws do these shooters break when they even so much as come on campus with a gun or a knife? By then, and in the hours to days before, they had broken all of them.
Every single shooting by a known criminal gives testimony to the failure of gun control by how it has failed to keep a prohibited person from acquiring a loaded gun. And within an hour by some expert estimates. Every single shooting is a win for gun control -- and a loss for liberty and safety -- by how its only adherents are the honest and law-abiding. In this regard for promoting chaos or crisis, gun control works.
Let’s go back a few hours before the shooting. Shooters often -- often enough -- are angry miscreants with powerful anti-social motives and acting out. No matter how many laws you write, they will break them in order to act out their rage. You will not stop these people by laws. They will slip in under the radar not because dealers want to sell guns to anybody; that is not the violent act. But because no one can tell who is nuts and who isn’t over the counter. The violence is the murder, not the acquisition of gun.
Even more to the point, you will not stop them by believing that police alone have the responsibility for stopping the shooter. That would be like banning the Heimlich maneuver on a choking student because you believe it is exclusively the responsibility of only the Rescue Squad. Does it make sense to do nothing and wait for help? Does it make any sense to the survivors who were aided by a Good Samaritan immediately and effectively?
Gun bans are an interference with the optimal solution. In the armed adult student, there is an immediacy which cannot be matched by police or even EMS. You might say that police cannot be everywhere, but, my fellow Americans, they can in a way.
The authority we delegate to law enforcement comes up from the people, which is another way of saying that the law is present in every one of us. Banning guns interferes with this on a mistaken notion that an armed student is untrained, without authority, inexperienced and hasty, but there are reports of armed citizens doing what is necessary on campus at the moment as an uncomplicated and straightforward act.
Like CPR or the Heimlich maneuver, you don’t need to be a doctor to save a life by doing what is needed then and there.
As I said, Independence is the best kept secret of statism, and gun control grows statism.
Gun ownership is as much spirit, presence of mind, training and freedom to act as it is iron. CPR is as much training, spirit and the freedom to act as it is two hands. This independence translates into safety of self and for others when police cannot be there. And most of all, the thugs come to know it.
Guns on campus has to be a more ubiquitous reality as soon as possible. It must be appreciated as part of our larger public policy and public interest. More campuses are adopting guns on campus and without regret. Only with the more ubiquitous armed adult student can trustees say they are doing everything to protect the students.
John Longenecker is author of The CPR Corollary, a second amendment outreach to non-gun owners for smaller government in 2012.