Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | MAY 13, 2011 7:20 AM

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Concealed carry wouldn't prevent violent incidents

Students for Concealed Carry on Campus' argument is one of the most specious I have ever heard.

Two recent events are illustrative.

On Jan. 8, a gunman attacked Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson. The gunman emptied one magazine and was attempting to reload when he was disrupted by unarmed bystanders. One grabbed his second magazine and another tackled him. Joseph Zamudio, nearby and legally armed with a handgun, rushed to assist.

Zamudio claimed that he drew his weapon and was about to shoot the person who had a gun when another bystander stopped him, pointing out the shooter, who had been disarmed. Zamudio, an armed bystander, almost contributed to an increased death toll in the incident.

On April 27, an Afghan air-force pilot walked into a meeting of U.S. military officers in Kabul and shot eight of them, despite the proliferation of guns at that meeting. No one in the military is issued a weapon without being trained and demonstrating proficiency in using it.

Unarmed bystanders disarm a shooter, then prevent an armed bystander from shooting even more people. Armed and trained military officers are gunned down before they can draw their weapons.

The data simply do not bear out Students for Concealed Carry on Campus' claims of increased safety from carrying weapons.

The event at the Kabul airport is eerily similar to what happened on this campus on Nov. 1, 1991, except that only one person had a gun. The outcome was the same. Before you decide to support concealed carry on campus, find someone who was there that day. Ask them what it felt like. Ask them how long it took the pain to go away. Then maybe you'll understand why guns don't belong on campus.

Tom Persoon

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