Letter to the editor: Support concealed carry legislation through ASB

Posted on Jan 30 2018 - 8:44am by Madison DeMotts

In the Friday, Jan. 26, issue of The DM, a letter to the editor addressed a proposal from the ASB Senate External Affairs Committee about concealed carry permits for students on campus. I’m not approaching the letter as a senator – I’m approaching it as a woman.

I’m 5-foot-3 and 120 pounds. I know that if a man – of just about any size, might I add – wanted to do me physical harm, he could.

I’m not a track star. I would not be able to outrun a man who’s determined to do me harm.

Having a weapon would level the playing field.

Forcing me, along with everyone else, to rely on our campus’s resources for victims of sexual assault, domestic violence and other violent crimes is backwards. Why not enable and empower me to prevent the incident from occurring instead?

Concealed carry permit holders have saved countless lives across the country, and downplaying their heroism by calling their situations “the ‘good guy with a gun’ myth” is insulting. It’s not a myth: That’s reality.

You can read the many articles online about these situations, including the off-duty officer who was in a Costco in Kansas City when a gunman came in, or the Sutherland Springs, Texas, tragedy during which 26 churchgoers lost their lives but others were saved because of “good guys with guns.”

Attempt to put yourself in another person’s shoes; I pray that you never have to be in a situation in which you need a good guy with a gun, but if you were, I’m sure you’d think the average 18-minute response time by law enforcement in active shooter situations is not “adequate.”

Criminals, by definition, ignore and disobey the law. They don’t care if we have laws prohibiting firearms on campus or not. This is why we need concealed carry on campus: Without it, people who would want to do us harm know that we law-abiding citizens would not be carrying a firearm and, therefore, they could do maximum damage. This is what happened at the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, and in many other areas where gun violence occurred in gun-free zones.

We live in a dangerous world. We need to be able to protect and defend ourselves from those who are counting on us not carrying a firearm.

Madison DeMotts is a junior business major from Gulf Breeze, Florida.