Recently, one Alabama university student took issue with an email circulated to his inbox by his university. In that email, the university (which does not allow concealed carry) advised students to:
- Act aggressively against an active shooter
- Use improvised weapons against someone armed with a firearm
Do you know what would have been better? Actually being able to defend your own life through the use of your own firearm.
Here’s a snapshot of that letter sent from the university to students who pay tens of thousands of dollars a year to get a higher education:
That’s precisely the conversation that took place in one subreddit before that student went ahead and submitted the following letter to his university administrators.
To whom it may concern:
I have read and reviewed the recently distributed notification concerning active shooter situations on campus. It greatly concerns me that there are policies in place that prohibit law abiding citizens from carrying a weapon upon them for self defense. It is more concerning that this notification not only recognizes the possibility that these “rules” may be broken, and an active shooter situation may arise, but recommends that I “act aggressively” towards the shooter. It seems counterintuitive to instruct students, who evidently cannot be trusted to protect themselves, to place themselves in harm’s way without proper means of defense, using only “improvised weapons.”
You deny these individuals their constitutionally protected right, and yet ask them to defend themselves by “throwing items.” This notification is very hypocritical and I sincerely wish this institution would consider allowing law abiding students to concealed carry while on campus.
As the holder of an Alabama Unrestricted Pistol Permit, I have been subjected to the most stringent background investigation my state can provide. Through this investigation, the State of Alabama found that I can be trusted to possess a concealed firearm on my person. Despite this finding, I am unilaterally stripped of my right to bear arms the moment I step on campus, even though no tangible measures are taken to ensure the University of Alabama is actually gun free. The States of Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Oregon, Utah, and Wisconsin have all passed legislation permitting concealed carry on college campuses. None have experienced a spike in violence on campus. I urge the University to review its policies and consider allowing the possession of concealed firearms by licensed students and faculty.
And while we all waited with baited breath to see what response would come of it, there’s a certain expectation that the administrators of universities have completely written off the safety and security of their students and faculty on campus.
But, after waiting, a response did finally arrive.
And here it is:
Is it the response we really wanted? No. Absolutely not.
But here is where we start to break through these walls — by starting the discussion with those who actually run the university.
You’re the one paying tens of thousands of dollars (or much, much more) to attend that school. Why do they get the right to restrict your constitutional freedoms?
In short: they don’t.
Make it a point to vote with your dollars and definitely deliver why asking students to literally throw themselves at armed attackers is an impractical idea when there’s a much simpler, easier option right in front of their noses. Allow campus carry.
And conversely, as a faculty member working on campus — why should an active shooter have the right to hurt you, your students, or your fellow colleagues? What right does the university have to tell you it’s your job to hunker in a corner and wait for whatever gruesome end comes?
And it starts with holding this conversation with university administrators.