DATE: February 25, 2015
TO: USF & NRA Members and Friends
FROM: Marion P. Hammer
USF Executive Director
NRA Past President
State university and college administrators, professors and faculty members are mounting a heavy lobbying effort against the bills allowing concealed campus carry by license holders who are 21 years of age or older. Some of these "educators" who get paid with our tax dollars to teach our young men and women are actively engaged in politics and lobbying against the constitutional right to carry firearm for protection.
Further, NY Mayor Michael Bloomberg's "Everytown" anti-gun group is flooding committees with their anti-gun message.
PLEASE IMMEDIATELY EMAIL Members of the House Higher Education Committee URGING THEM TO SUPPORT HB-4005
In the subject line put: SUPPORT HB-4005 -- Protect the Second Amendment
(Block and Copy All email addresses into the "Send To" box)
It is imperative that you email these Committee members right away.
The Campus Carry Debate
By Marion P. Hammer
At the Florida Senate Criminal Justice Committee meeting in Tallahassee 2/16/15, we saw a parade of college and university professors attempting to lobby the committee without facts, without reason and without decorum.
An Eckerd College professor even stood in the back of the room and screamed at the Committee Chairman. Her behavior was not only inappropriate and unprofessional, it was shocking. One cannot help being appalled that those who refuse to engage in civil discourse and who behave with such disrespect are teaching impressionable students.
In the absence of facts or evidence to support their position, opponents of campus carry presented opinions. Their primary message, however, was that Florida’s college and university administrators and their faculty union were all against campus carry.
Collective opposition from state universities doesn’t make them right it merely reveals their willingness to march in collective unison, while denying reality. It is the same tactic they used in trying to keep Senator John Thrasher from becoming President of FSU. They attacked an honorable statesman and scholar, because he didn't fit their ideal of a liberal college administrator.
These are the same state universities that use their failure to stop illegal, underage drinking on campuses as an excuse to prohibit self-defense bylaw-abiding gun owners who are licensed to carry.
The rantings of one professor – a self-proclaimed expert – claiming that since firearms aren't allowed in bars, the constitutional right to carry guns for protection should be banned on campus because "on Friday night a college campus is the biggest bar in town," is a damning indictment of the failures of the state university system.
Alcohol and drugs are prohibited on campuses. Underage drinking by those under 21 is illegal. Illicit drug use is a violation of law for any age group anywhere. State university officials need to protect students from this illegal activity, not turn a blind eye to it.
It is a fact that college campuses in Florida are gun-free zones where murderers, rapists and other violent criminals can commit their crimes without fear of being harmed by their victims.
It is a fact that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement supplies data showing hundreds of sexual offenders live in very close proximity to Florida’s college and university campuses. Maps showing where they live are designed alert students and parents to the danger from these predators.
Studies by nationally recognized experts, including Dr. Gary Kleck -- a criminologist and researcher from FSU -- show that crime among people who carry guns for self-defense is almost nonexistent.
States that allow firearms to be carried on campus have not seen a rise in crimes committed with firearms.
Those who say police have done an adequate job of responding to campus shootings and controlling the situation must also acknowledge that police do the best job they can, but they are not there when the attack occurs. They only arrive after the rape, robbery or other attack has happened. Police can't stop the crime -- only the victim has a chance to actually stop it. Denying the tools of self-defense creates more victims.
Further, claiming that police won't be able to tell a good guy with a gun from a bad guy with a gun is just nonsense. They do that every day, in every jurisdiction and state in our nation. The fact is there is no legitimate reason to deny adults, 21 years or age or older, who are licensed by the state to carry firearms for protection, to continue to carry when they step on a college campus.
These license holders have no criminal record, no record of mental illness, no record of alcohol or drug abuse and have had training in the safe use of a firearm.
Simply not liking guns, not trusting students, and not respecting the constitutional rights of others is not a legitimate reason to prohibit fundamental freedoms.