Kyne: Lift of concealed weapon ban on CU campus endangers students and faculty

In March, the Colorado State Supreme Court overturned a Colorado University campus ban on guns. Guns have been banned from the CU campus for over 40 years, but a law passed in 2003, the Concealed Carry Act, permits students to carry concealed weapons. The court ruled in favor of this law. This action is a step in the wrong direction, and I completely agree with the professors who are voicing their opinions against this ruling.

In 2008 when two students and an alumnus brought a suit against the school, it was initially dismissed, but the State Supreme Court eventually overturned the dismissal. Part of the reasoning behind this ruling is that Colorado is one of five states that allow those with a permit to carry guns on campus grounds. The court believes that the school was overstepping its boundaries – yet shouldn’t those who are directly affected by this law have some say?

Ken McConnellogue, vice president of communication at CU said, “We're disappointed in this instance that the State Supreme Court ruled that the regents don't have the statutory and constitutional authority to govern our campuses … We believe they are in the best position to make determinations about campus safety and the safety of our students, faculty, staff and visitors.” Mr. McConnellogue’s voice should be heard, as should the rest of the staff’s.

Those protesting the allowance of guns have brought up the Aurora, Colo. movie theater shootings and the Columbine High School shooting. Professors have expressed their concern about unstable students. Professors should not have to work in fear, and students should not have to wonder if someone sitting next to them is carrying a concealed weapon.

Even if a person is not a killer, accidents happen, and that is a fact that cannot be ignored. There are multiple dangers to take into consideration, and those who are on the campus and dealing with such fear should have a say in what goes on.

I fully believe that certain people have a right to own guns, such as law enforcement officers or avid hunters. School is a place for students to learn, not enforce laws or hunt.

There are those who argue that allowing concealed weapons will promote safety, yet throwing more guns into a situation does not seem very safe. Again, there are people whose job it is to take down a killer, and that job does not fall into the hands of students. We all want to feel safe, yet there are ways to increase security, such as having large campus police presence, alarm systems and so on.

The State Supreme Court needs to enforce proper gun control, and dismissing a rule that helps build up the control we have today is a step backwards. The court cannot ignore the fact that people who work within the college feel the need for this rule. There is a time and place for guns and it is not, and never will be, on a college campus.