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Campus gun laws

There are arguments for both sides, but one expert says such legislation doesn't matter much either way.

March 06, 2011

Utah is the only state that requires public universities to allow holders of concealed weapons licenses to carry guns on campus, although some private campuses elsewhere also allow concealed weapons.

Laws to allow concealed weapons on college campuses are being considered in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas.

Advocates say such laws would let students, faculty and staff protect themselves in dire situations. Opponents say more guns on campus would cause more shootings and do little to prevent violent crime. Others reject both arguments.

"The hopes of many people that good people carrying guns would be able to intervene with bad people doing crimes turns out to not be very true," said David Kennedy, director of the Center for Crime Prevention and Control at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York.

"And the fears that many people had that this would just lead to a bloodbath also aren't true," Kennedy added. "Good people who go through a licensing procedure and pass that scrutiny don't do crazy things with their handguns. It simply doesn't matter very much either way."

— Julie Mianecki

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