West Virginia Passes Campus Carry at Public Universities for Those With Concealed Carry Permits
“The Second Amendment is a civil right that has been too long considered inferior to our other rights”
Some university leaders opposed the measure, naturally.
The College Fix reports:
West Virginia passes campus carry law, expanding gun rights
Students, visitors and employees at West Virginia’s public universities and colleges are one step closer to being able to conceal carry on campuses, thanks to a bill signed by Governor Jim Justice.
Senate Bill 10 will ensure that starting in July 2024, legal gun owners can conceal carry at public higher education institutions.
“Proud day for me,” the Republican governor said at the signing.
A West Virginia University student leader told The College Fix he is glad Gov. Justice signed the legislation and suggested some other ways the state can protect the Second Amendment and encourage concealed carry.
The Fix reached out to sponsors of the legislation multiple times in the past two weeks to ask for a response to criticism of the legislation and their motivation behind the bill but none responded. The Fix also asked Fairmont State University’s campus safety department for comment but it did not respond.
A supporter of the bill told The Fix via email that the legislation is a good first step in reducing crime on campus.
“The Second Amendment is a civil right that has been too long considered inferior to our other rights,” Nathan Quarantillo, a law student and Republican club leader, told The Fix via email. “Criminals will no longer be sure that a student going about a college town is an unarmed easy target, and this will likely have a deterrent effect.”
Though Quarantillo says he supports the bill, he wishes it provided students with the means to obtain a concealed carry permit.
“Currently, Campus Carry is only allowed to those with a valid concealed carry permit,” he said. “As West Virginia is a constitutional carry state, I would make concealed carry classes available to students so they can get a permit without undue hardship.”
University officials at Marshall University and WVU opposed the legislation.
“We, at West Virginia University and Marshall University, support local control, and we believe that our boards of governors are best suited to decide whether guns should be permitted on campus,” the universities stated. “We therefore do not support statewide campus carry.”
WVU student Olivia Dowler called the legislators “selfish” for passing the bill.
“It is selfish for the West Virginia Legislature to ignore the countless pleas of students, faculty, staff, administrators and parents,” Dowler wrote in The Daily Athenaeum, the campus newspaper. “It is ignorant not to believe the data between firearms and mental health.”
The bill does universities to limit concealed carry in daycare facilities on campus as well as in arenas that hold more than 1,000 people and several other places.
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As I repeatedly tell my legislators: other than RECENT “tradition,” there is no rational basis for an educational institution for legal adults to be a “constitutional rights-free zone.” It is not so for any other constitutional right, and the idea that this exception will reduce crime implies that they expect criminals to honor the rule, which tells you even more about its irrationality.