Glenn's post is completely correct. Here in Michigan we are undergoing this same debate and the talking points are just as he describes them. There are a few ways to counter them but a very wise woman once said "The hardest thing to explain is the glaringly evident which everybody had decided not to see". The best response is something along these lines: "This is a law that lets people who are ALREADY qualified to carry handguns to carry them on campus. It does nothing more."
Originally Posted by Glenn E. Meyer
IMHO, the biggest stumbling block even with progun folks is that unfortunately the student population of classic on campus residents (even if 21) are not seen as emotionally stable as the off campus more mature CCW population. Guns in the dorms or frat houses are seen as risk factor due to the stew of hormones and substance abuse.
The Chronicle just ran a series about repeated arsons in dorms from the delightful young men who live there. There was one of a frat house (remember our frat house thread) where the boys went out and shot up stuff for fun. That's what folks think of when one proposes adding guns to the mix.
This is a hard one. The best response I have found is merely to say "This will not make it so frat can carry around guns and bring them on campus and shoot them off etc." That is already
illegal (and it obviously didn't stop anyone). It is already
illegal to drink/snort/smoke/shootup and have a concealed firearm. Those people have already displayed a disdain for the law so they will probably have guns anyways. They are the people you have to be worried about. This law only makes it so that people who are already
permitted to carry everywhere
else can do so on campus. Incidentally, someone who has gone through the training for a CCW (at least here in MI) probably has levels of maturity way beyond the typical drunken frat boy. It takes a lot of money, time, patience, and loop-jumping to get a permit here.
Originally Posted by Glenn E. Meyer
The fear of an innocent getting shot overwhelms the possible good of stopping a rampage. Studies show this is a factor - risks to innocents even to do good are not that acceptable. Rampage rationales are seen as different from stopping personal muggings. You don't want untrained folks in a fire fight of some intensity. That's a factor in the debate.
This argument also appears. The best way to deal with this is to simply point out that people who would go on murderous rampages are already breaking the law. Incidentally people with CCW permits are statistically way less likely to go on murderous rampages (has there ever even been a case of this). You cannot have a diagnosed mental illness and get a CCW. Again, this law would only allow people who can already
carry everywhere else
to carry on campus.
In short, separate their argument from the effects of the law. The law only
says that people with CCW permits can carry on campus. It does not
make it legal to drink and have one. It does not
make it legal to be high and have one. There could very well be a provision added that says that people who live in frat houses etc cannot have a firearm. A lot of gun owners would support that. This would not
allow guns in dorms (the dorm population is under 21 and can't have a CCW. Also guess what, there are already guns in dorms. The people that have them have already broken the law. What else might they do?). It will not
cause rampages on campus. Those already happen (and it's not a coincidence they happen in "gun free" zones). Again, it only allows people who are lawfully permitted to carry everywhere else to carry on campus.