Gun carriers don’t always pose threat

Freedom New Mexico

Gay, bisexual and transgendered students gathered with other supporters earlier this month to celebrate diversity on the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs campus. At the “Safety is a Human Right” rally, many of the speakers complained of harassment and threats against gay students at UCCS.

According to a report in The Gazette newspaper, “Several speakers called for the campus to create an environment where all students feel safe in their dorms, in the restrooms and in classes.”

The Pink Pistols, a group of gay firearm advocates with a local chapter, has a plan for this. It’s summed up nicely on the organization’s Web site, www.pinkpistols.org: “Armed gays don’t get bashed.”

It’s difficult to learn if one has to worry about being assaulted on the way to the library. Here’s an idea that can be part of the solution and encourage college students to take responsibility for their own safety: UCCS and other colleges and universities should drop their bans on concealed-carry permit holders being armed on campus.

The argument that gun bans actually put people in danger has been made in this space before. Bans create an area in which thugs and mentally unstable people know they can commit their unsavory acts, including murder, with little or no danger of being stopped.

Allowing students and campus visitors who have concealed-carry permits would create uncertainty in the minds of those individuals bent on destruction, which could work as a deterrent.

Most importantly, it would give trained, responsible, licensed students with guns a chance to defend themselves and others.

Personal responsibility for one’s own safety becomes critical any time a student, gay or heterosexual, is threatened. And it’s not only NRA-types who believe this. The Pink Pistols promotes the use of firearms among gays for self defense.

Self defense crosses the lines of politics, sexuality, race religion and just about every other artificial line that divides people. Gays and transgenders, the elderly, the disabled and members of many other groups that are often targeted because they’re perceived to be easy marks can benefit from taking responsibility for their own safety.

Every individual doesn’t have to pack heat, but if a group of potential victims gets a reputation for carrying firearms to protect themselves, possible assailants will get the idea that these folks aren’t to be messed with.

Should every college student carry a gun? Absolutely not. Some don’t have the proper mindset, others dislike firearms, while still others wouldn’t harm another person even to save their own lives.

But students, faculty, staff and visitors who have been approved for concealed-carry permits are not Rambo-types with itchy trigger fingers. They are responsible citizens who have no desire to become victims. They’re not a threat to anyone except those who would do them harm.

In a truly free society, government mustn’t bar them from carrying firearms until they have proven by their actions they pose an active threat to the safety of others.