Gun-control laws have been a hot topic this year since Texas came out with a new law allowing students 21 years or older to carry a firearm fully concealed if they have the appropriate permit to do so.
I didn’t grow up in a gun-heavy household. In fact, I just found out this year my parents even owned guns. If more people were educated and trained to use guns to defend themselves in life or death situations, I feel people wouldn’t be so consumed with hysteria the moment they saw a gun.
There’s this fear when it comes to guns. Instead of being scared of a gun, I want to know how to use one. If I am in a deadly situation, I want to protect myself, and if that means shooting someone who is going to endanger my life, then so be it.
Having firearms on campus can initially make some people cringe with fear, and if you think about the what-ifs of any situation, they can potentially be scary.
Yes, there might be someone who doesn’t act responsibly with their weapon.
There might be some confusion in a mass shooting situation if everyone has a gun.
Social situations could be more intense if people knew someone was carrying a gun.
But you can’t change anyone’s actions but your own. Criminals are going to commit crimes, and bad people are going to do bad things. You can’t legislate horrible things out of society or humanity. Instead of sitting back and watching terrible things happen, I think people should be more proactive.
At least proactive enough to know how to defend your life if you were in a bad situation. If unstable people are allowed to obtain a concealed carry permit, providing they have a clean record, then I can too. If that person decides to come to a gun-free zone with their firearm and pull it out to shoot me, then I want to be able to defend my life.
Laws do not restrict some people’s decisions. People will break the law if they want to, and I want to be prepared if that happens.
School shootings happen, and it is absolutely terrible that someone would want to take the life of vulnerable, innocent students, even small children.
I think the fact campuses are gun-free plays some role in how shooters are choosing their locations. If they know people are allowed to have guns to protect themselves, they may not be as gung-ho to shoot up a formerly vulnerable, defenseless area. Gun control is not an easy topic, and I think many conditions factor into everyone’s personal beliefs.
There are some cut-and-dry solutions, but I don’t think everyone will agree on such a controversial topic. And that’s OK.
One solution I think would help is to make a psychological evaluation part of obtaining a concealed carry permit.
If you are carrying around a deadly weapon, you need to be stable.
This definitely won’t eliminate all problems surrounding this issue, but it may help, as well as being educated and trained to use a weapon.
Emily Esleck can be reached at managing.editor@ThePlainsman.com