Sangamon County Rifle Association
Right Reason on Second Amendment Rights
Antis Gun-Free School Zone Failure
Jim Butler, President, SCRA
June 2007 GunNews
The fallacy of gun-free school zones was brought home to us in the Virginia Tech shootings. It didn't have to happen!
In January of last year the Virginia General Assembly shot down HB1572, a bill that would have prevented universities like Virginia Tech from disarming employees and students with concealed carry permits valid in the rest of the state while on the campus. The result of this action was the mythical gun-free zone so beloved by the anti-self-defense movement for Virginia universities. It was a tragic mistake that took away Virginia Tech students and faculty their civil right to keep and bear arms to defend themselves and allowed a monster to kill them. The school's gun-free zone had been turned into a slaughterhouse by the the anti-self-defense movement. Self-defense is an ancient tradition, but these students and faculty, thanks to the defeat of HB1572, never had a chance to defend themselves. They had become part of a target rich environment for a deranged man who then turned his gun on himself.
Wouldn't it have been better if someone had stopped him before he could murder anyone? Deterrence and self-defense can work better than useless efforts at pre-empting evil intent.
In January 2002 a disgruntled law student at the Appalachian Law School in Grundy, Virginia, who killed two faculty members and a student and wounded three others, was subdued by two students who ran to their vehicles off campus to retrieve their firearms.
Another example was in Pearl, Mississippi, in 1997, when sixteen-year-old Luke Woodham used a hunting rifle to kill his ex-girlfriend and her close friend, and wounded seven other students after having killed his own mother. His murder spree was stopped only when Assistant Principal Joel Myrick got his handgun from his car and halted Woodham from shooting anyone else. He covered Woodham until the police arrived. Incredibly, the news media ignored the fact that an armed citizen, Mr. Myrick, a true hero, had prevented a larger massacre. They could have used him at Virginia Tech.
HB1572 in Virginia, which would have allowed handguns on campuses by those who possessed a valid concealed handgun permit, died in a subcommittee. The defeat of the self-defense bill was supported by the Virginia Tech Administration at that time.
Virginia Tech spokesman and Vice-President Larry Hincker, was happy to hear HB1572 was defeated. "I'm sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly's actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus."
He was terribly wrong! The defeat of HB1572 became a death sentence for many of Virginia Tech's students and faculty.
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