By Chris Wagoner:
It happened again! Another attack on a college campus. This time it was Ohio State University, and it was not a gun being used, but a knife that wounded 11 people. The suspect (I will not dignify or promote the terrorists name) is dead of a gunshot wound from a campus police officer who just happened to be in the area at the time of the attack. What in the world are we doing America? Why can we not stop these attacks on our college campuses and other places where we gather in large numbers? Why can’t we just pass a law? Maybe more gun control laws would help. Take away all the guns and the attacks would stop right? If guns were harder to get, then these attacks would stop right? I forgot, this one was with a knife and it was a gun that saved more people from being injured or killed. Yes, I know that it was a police officer that shot and killed the suspect, but what if that officer had not been in the area at the time of the incident? What if it had taken them the normal 3-5 minutes to respond like it does everywhere in the country (and that is being kind and conservative in response times, they are much longer in many places).
What can we do to lessen the impact or to stop these kinds of terrorist attacks when they happen? Let’s look at this realistically and not emotionally like the large majority of the anti-gun crowd. Put away your fear and your hate for all things gun-related for just a few minutes as you read this. Since this was a knife attack and had nothing to do with guns, with the exception that a gun, in fact, saved everyone’s lives, consider the facts that gun laws would have done nothing to change the outcome of this. Or could they have?
Ohio State University is a gun free zone. You are not allowed to conceal carry or openly carry a firearm anywhere on campus as it is against Ohio State law. You may have a loaded firearm secured and locked in your vehicle on campus. Yet, in order to use a firearm for self-defense you would of course have to go to your car, unlock it, retrieve your firearm, and return to the threat. In this case, an Ohio State University police officer happened to be in the area investigating a possible gas leak causing an alarm to go off at a nearby building. Had that alarm not gone off and that police officer not been sent to that call, it is very likely that the number of injuries and possibly even a few deaths would have occurred before police could have responded to stop the threat. What if the campus police officer had responded from the other side of the campus and taken, here I am being generous again, 3 to 5 minutes to respond? How many more people would’ve being injured or killed?
With the push nationwide to allow licensed concealed carry citizens to do so on campus, this attack only helps to prove the justification of such a notion. What if one of the students in the area was carrying a weapon and had been able to stop the attacker before or most likely during the attack? Even before the first few victims were injured? Would that not have been better? Just ask the victims what they think.
I know there are many from the anti-gun establishment that cringe every time the issue of campus carry laws are discussed. Could it be that they have very little faith in the youth of America today? Remember when we talk about the passing of campus carry laws that it is for those who already have a concealed carry permit and are legally able to carry firearms in almost all other places in their state. What makes one think that because it’s a college campus the issues would be different? You will hear the same old tired cries about blood in the streets, shootouts at frat parties, professors shot by students who fail their course, however, the reality is that none of those things are currently happening in those states that allow campus carry. Are they not occurring due to students carrying a licensed firearm? We already have laws on the books that are supposed to prevent these types of things from happening, however, it is still difficult to stop someone who is bent on terrorizing Americans.
Creating new laws restricting law-abiding citizens from defending themselves is simply idiotic and extremely shortsighted. It also speaks very poorly regarding how we view our young people in America. The young people on our college campuses are the same age as many military men and women currently serving. Some in fact have already served or will serve in the future. Some of these young people already drive, fly, operate multimillion dollar equipment, and carry weapons on a daily basis in the protection of the United States. Yet, we don’t trust them to carry a firearm on a college campus. That is very illogical and a sad reflection upon our society.
I work full-time on a college campus, with decades of experience in law enforcement. I teach firearms to law enforcement officers and also stay abreast on training in the handling of firearms. I consider myself to be a professional firearms instructor and competent in the carrying and use of a firearm, yet according to the laws of the state of Florida, while I am able to carry a firearm in almost every other place, I cannot carry a firearm onto a college campus. By law, I am supposed to leave it in my vehicle locked and secured. That makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. In addition, I know that many of my students in the police academy are veterans who have carried firearms for years, now training to become police officers in the state of Florida. Yet they too, are not allowed to carry a firearm on campus even if they are licensed to do so elsewhere. In addition, many of my students are psychologically screened and tested by police departments, are being considered for positions as police officers, and are deputy sheriffs in my local area. Yet those students are not allowed to carry a concealed firearm. What kind of sense does that make?
When is America going to wake up and realize that posting a plastic sign that says “no firearms allowed” or passing laws that state people can’t carry a firearm in designated areas, does absolutely nothing to stop violence in those places? Only when we allow our citizens to protect themselves will these attacks finally begin to cease or at least allow the carnage to be minimized. Those law-abiding citizens who happen to be there, like that police officer on the OSU campus, and are qualified and trained to defend themselves may have a better chance to stop the attacker, saving others in the process. Questions are asked all the time, “If we outlaw guns and it saves one life, isn’t it worth it?” The resounding answer of course is NO! You can’t save a life by taking away a constitutional right, but if you allow people the right to defend themselves, you may in fact save a life. If allowing citizens who are licensed concealed holders to carry their firearms on a college campus saves even one life, isn’t it worth it?
These attackers do not follow our rules. WAKE UP AMERICA! You must be proactive. Stop being afraid and start taking the initiative to improve your own safety. If not for you, than do it for those who can’t.
Chris Wagoner is an OpsLens Contributor and U.S. Army Veteran . He has been in law enforcement the last 35+ years. He specializes in LE Firearms Instruction, and is in charge of a large Police Academy in North Florida. In his spare time Chris is a free-lance Military Reporter and owner/founder of the Largest Military Videos Channel on YouTube “3rdID8487”.