We all know shootings happen on a daily basis around the world. They are an unfortunate fact of modern life. People are struggling to come up with a real solution, a way of making us safer in our daily life. Unfortunately some of these solutions make life potentially more dangerous. We’ll look at one that disarms citizens in an attempt to increase safety. Unfortunately, gun free zones do not increase safety. Why Gun Free Zones do not increase safety Take the Virginia Tech shootings, 32 dead and many injured. CNN. com (2009) because a man with a gun decided to kill as many people as he could.
Northern Illinois University, a man with a shotgun not even from the school entered a room of 162 students and shot 21 people Kevin Bohn (2008).. Even outside of schools at the Westroads Mall in Omaha, a gun free zone, a man killed 8 and wounded 5 othersJohn Lott (2007). In all three incidents no one but the shooters were armed. The students could not have been armed because if they were, they would be referred to as criminals. The problem The problem lies in the fact that the law abiding citizens have been disarmed, leaving the criminals still roaming about gun free zones with guns.
Some reasons have been adduced for this but none of them seems convincing. Some reasons given by the Brady Campaign are that there is not enough safe storage space in dormitories, armed security may mistake armed students for the gunman in another incident, and due to the reckless behavior of college kids guns would decrease safety. These arguments are easily disregarded though as a gun with a gunlock takes little more space than the gun itself, armed security has not been present in any recent school shooting, and the “reckless behavior of students” excuse could be used to impose a ban on anything, from cars to alcohol.
It really appears that we have taken away the students’ ability to protect themselves for no cogent reason. Multiple gunmen We’ve seen what happens when unarmed people face a suicidal gunman, but what happens when others are armed. Well at the Appalachian Law School, a man who was failing shot and killed 3 people, wounding three others. Ted Lang (2004). When he went down the stairs to shoot more he was stopped by 3 students, 2 who were armed. In another gun free mall, the Trolley Mall in Utah, an armed off duty police officer stopped a shooterJohn Lott (2007).
Two incidents with two shooters stopped by armed individuals. So now we have seen what happens in both mass shootings with unarmed victims, and situations with armed individuals. We have also seen some of the reasons given to have gun free zones. Given these situations and reasons, I can see no reason for gun free zones nor how they can be called safer than an area with armed citizens. The problem, as often stated by gun advocacy groups, is that when disarming are carried out, only the law abiding citizen is disarmed, not the criminal.
The gunmen themselves have proven they do not care about the law. In the end, gun free zones simply create an environment where one man with a gun can kill indiscriminately without fear of being stopped. References Brady Campaign(2009). Guns on Campus and in Schools? Brady Campaign. Retrieved on 4th of June 2008 from <http://www. bradycampaign. org/action/schools> CNN. com (2009). Special Report: Massacre at Virginia Tech. Retrieved on 4th June, 2009 from http://www. cnn. com/SPECIALS/2007/virginiatech. shootings
John Lott (2007). Media Coverage of Mall Shooting Fails to Reveal Mall’s Gun-Free-Zone Status. Fox News. Retrieved on 22nd May, 2009 from http://www. foxnews. com/story/0,2933,315563,00. html Kevin Bohn (2008). 6 shot dead, including gunman, at Northern Illinois University CNN Retreived on 22nd May, 2009 from http://www. cnn. com/2008/US/02/14/university. shooting Theodore E. Lang (2003). Appalachian Law School Shootings. Media Crushes Truth. Retrieved on 4th June 2009 from http://www. thepriceofliberty. org/04/01/13/lang. htm