The 2nd Amendment: Give it back to students
Below is a copy of my letter to my State Representative (and some others that I respect) regarding 2nd amendment privileges on non-traditional college campuses:
January 16, 2013
Representative Edward Lindsey
415 State Capitol
Atlanta, GA 30334
CC: Representative Chuck Martin, Representative B.J. Pak, Representative Paulette Braddock,
Senator Hunter Hill, Senator Judson Hill, Senator Brandon Beach
Re: Second Amendment privileges on alternative college campuses.
Dear Representative Lindsey,
My name is Jessica ________ and I am one of your constituents. I am currently enrolled in the Masters of Public Administration program at the University of Georgia, though I attend the satellite campus in Gwinnett. If you’re not familiar with this campus, it is a multi-story office complex that serves as an alternative campus for working graduate and doctoral students. The “campus”, which includes classrooms, study rooms, a library and a few administrative offices, encompasses the entire first floor of the building, with corporate offices on floors two and three.
As I know you are aware, firearms are prohibited on any college campus, regardless of a carry permit presence or gun caliber. As a Georgia State alum, I recognize the vulnerability of students on a college campuses and I feel that vulnerability is no less simply because my current campus is in a suburb. A “gun-free” zone, regardless of location, places students at an unfair advantage. I recognized the true disadvantage when I was informed by campus personnel that even “non-traditional” campuses fall under prohibited zones. Students have no barriers, as most walls and doors are made of glass and doors open outwards into the hallways (I’m sure you recall the dilemma with this in the Virginia Tech case). Without the ability to protect themselves, the only line of defense is to duck.
Classes at the Gwinnett campus often begin late-afternoon or early evening and release late and after dark. This is true of other campuses, such as the Georgia State campus in Alpharetta, the Terry Business School in Buckhead and the Georgia Perimeter satellite campuses across metro Atlanta. Further, nearly 100% of these students are graduate level and higher, therefore invalidating any argument regarding firearms in the hands of minors or those not eligible for a carry permit.
I understand that a blanket permit of firearms on campuses across Georgia is a long shot, especially in this political climate. I am, however, asking for proposed legislation which would allow firearms on alternative campuses which are adjacent to business offices. Business persons have no restrictions on their second amendment, however, as a student, I immediately stripped of my right to bear arms simply because of a ‘status’, even though we are all operating in the same building. Not only am I student, I, along with my classmates, am a sitting duck with a label of “potential victim”. I believe Georgia can do better and I believe students deserve better.
I welcome your feedback.