Colorado Court Approves Guns on Campus

August 24th, 2012 - by admin

David Burnett / Students for Concealed Carry – 2012-08-24 00:17:46

Colorado Supreme Court Affirms Campus Carry

Colorado Supreme Court Affirms Campus Carry
David Burnett / Students for Concealed Carry

DENVER (March 5, 2012) — Students in Colorado can now legally carry guns into college classrooms.

That’s the decision from Colorado’s Supreme Court, ruling in favor of Students for Concealed Carry (SCC), which brought suit against the University of Colorado, arguing that the college’s prohibition on guns violated the state’s concealed carry law, and that legislators intended for students to exercise their right to bear arms on campus when passing right-to-carry laws in 2002.

“We are very pleased by today’s ruling,” said Al Baker, the Legal Liaison for SCC. “The court upheld what we knew to be true all along, that public colleges and universities in Colorado are bound not only by the state constitution but also by the Concealed Carry Act from 2003.

Today’s decision also sends a message to other public colleges and universities in this county that Students for Concealed Carry will persist in the fight to restore reasonable firearm policies which afford licensed adults the same personal protection on campus they already enjoy in off-campus.”

According to the Students for Concealed Carry, the Court’s decision will affect firearms policies on all of Colorado’s public college campuses. 220 campuses in six states already allow campus carry, without resulting injuries or deaths reported.

“We expect other colleges to see the handwriting on the wall and comply with the court’s ruling,” said David Burnett, the national spokesman for the group. “If they refuse to adopt more reasonable policies, we may explore litigation against them as well.”

“Gun-free policies are an open invitation to psychopaths,” said Burnett. “Signs on the doors are an unenforceable lie that only robs licensed citizens of their ability to defend themselves. Until colleges can guarantee our safety, they can’t criminalize self-defense.”

University of Colorado Announces (Conditional) Campus Carry
David Burnett / Students for Concealed Carry

BOULDER (August 17, 2012) — After a prolonged legal battle with Students for Concealed Carry, the University of Colorado announced their new policy on firearms carry Thursday.

Overall, this is a massive victory for self-defense rights in Colorado. Students for Concealed Carry (SCC) is pleased and gratified that University of Colorado (CU) now permits students and faculty to participate in their own self-protection rather than being discriminated against by a policy which only impacted the very people capable of making a difference in a threatening situation.

SCC does share some concern about changes to residence hall contracts, which would require lawfully-armed students to relocate to separate housing.

On the face of it, segregating permit-holders to alternate locations appears a resurrection of “separate but equal” policies. Ultimately, the court ruling does not acknowledge CU’s legal authority to circumvent by contract what was lawfully ruled on by the supreme court.

We are further concerned that the rights of existing permit-holders even to visit the residence halls may be infringed. The right to self-defense does not end at the doorways of dorms, as evidenced by an armed dorm invasion at Georgia Tech in July.

At the same time, we recognize and appreciate that the college has a multitude of interests in play. We don’t feel that students should be forced to room with an armed student, and with .6% of CU’s campus population licensed to carry, the practical application of such a policy may be far less dire than the theoretical one.

SCC reached out to the University of Colorado and spoke with Deb Coffin, Vice-Chancellor of Student Affairs, who acknowledged the question of permit-holders carrying in residence halls had not actually been addressed, and would be discussed by the college. When asked about how this policy change would be enforced, such as for students who stay in dorms with firearms.

Vice-Chancellor Coffin stated that at present, the college’s preference is to talk with the student than attach a penalty. Ms. Coffin articulated that the primary concern is not existing permit-holders, but rather the possibility of non-permit holders finding or absconding with an unsecured firearm.

Ultimately, SCC and CU have the same goal at heart: the protection and safety of the campus population. Heretofore, the University of Colorado left that up to the goodwill of criminals to abide by policies enforced only by signs and stickers on campus doorways, or on law enforcement officers who may or may not be close enough to make a difference. The policy as it exists now seems to shrink the campus-wide gun-free zone to a dorm-sized spot on the map. A discussion with CU officials seems to leave this question unresolved, and as such, SCC will withhold judgment until review of the final decision.

David Burnett is the Director of Public Relations for Students for Concealed Carry

Students for Concealed Carry is a national, non-partisan, grassroots organization comprised of over 40,000 supporters which advocates for legal concealed carry on college campuses.

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