Guns on College Campuses


Yesterday Florida State House Representative Greg Steube filed a bill to permit guns onto college campuses. The bill, if passed by the Florida legislature, would allow people with a concealed carry permit to carry a firearm onto a college campus. Similar legislation has been proposed in Ohio and other states. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Florida is one of 20 states that prohibits guns on college campuses by law.

The law currently allows only students or faculty members to only carry a concealed stun gun onto campus as long as they have a concealed carry license. Anything that fires a projectile (such as a Taser that fires darts) is prohibited.

The Florida State tragedy involving a shooting at the Strozier Library is less than a month old. Three students were wounded, and the gunman was killed by police. One of the main issues with this bill will be whether or not allowing people with concealed carry licenses to carry guns on campus would prevent similar tragedies in the future. While one of the requirements of getting a concealed carry permit in Florida is completing a firearms safety course, it’s doubtful at best that someone with a carry permit and a gun would be the right person to stop a campus shooter.

So would permitting concealed weapons on college campuses be beneficial? Would it keep college students and faculty safer? Maybe, maybe not. Whatever the outcome, expect this proposed law to generate a lot of debate in Tallahassee.