Legal guns on campus may cause more harm

Getting a gun permit might be added on the to-do list for many. In reaction to tragedies such as the Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University massacre, twelve states are considering a bill that will allow people with concealed-weapon permits to carry guns at public universities.

According to the Associated Press, among the states considering the bill are Alabama, Georgia, Michigan, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington and Texas.

The bill is offered as a solution to end deadly violence on campuses. Supporters such as Students for Concealed Carry on Campus told USA Today they believe the bill will promote a safer environment on campus. Many people vying for the bill are not taking important matters into consideration.

Granted, in order to obtain a concealed-weapon permit one must be at least 21-years-old in most states, go through training and pass a criminal background check, but that does not validate a person’s mental condition.

BBC News reports that people with a mental illness committed 18 percent of murders and attempted murders. Both persons liable for the Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University killing had mental conditions. Note that both the gunmen responsible for the two mentioned university shootings brought their guns legally, according to ABC News.

A gun permit does not ensure that an individual is mature enough to handle conflicts. 

There is no telling what can happen in a heated moment between angry people.

The bill will only increase risks of a person acting on impulse and hostile emotions.

I believe that there are other precautionary measures besides getting a gun.

Government officials and universities should invest in the safety for everyone. Universities can offer situational awareness courses.

Recently, ABC News has reported that John Hopkins University has taken similar measures . The university reports that violence on campus has reduced by 43 percent.

There are safer alternatives for protection besides turning campus grounds into battlegrounds. The government needs to protect higher learning institutions by reducing the accessibility of guns to criminals and people with mental conditions, not by passing a bill that will jeopardize the safety of university campuses.

Kisha Payen is a senior broadcast student from Miami.  She can be reached at