Colleges Focus On Gun Bill

This is a discussion on Colleges Focus On Gun Bill within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; A bill being considered by the Virginia House of Delegates is aimed at protecting the rights of college students who have a concealed handgun permit, ...

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Thread: Colleges Focus On Gun Bill

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    Colleges Focus On Gun Bill

    A bill being considered by the Virginia House of Delegates is aimed at protecting the rights of college students who have a concealed handgun permit, reports The Roanoke Times. The bill would prohibit universities from having “the authority to establish rules or regulations limiting or abridging the ability of a student with a valid concealed handgun permit from lawfully carrying a concealed handgun.” The bill—HB 1572—includes exceptions for storage in college dormitories, military training programs and athletic events.


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    Bumper,

    Does that mean that students that lived on campus would be allowed to keep their carry pistol in their dorm rooms? I'm not sure if that's exemptions that would allow them, or would still prohibit them.

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    I haven't read much about this except for this one piece I just got and pasted here. It sounded to me like the exception to the existing law was being made so they could store (keep?) their guns in a dorm room. Maybe someone with a little more knowledge about exactly what this bill does will chime in.
    Bumper
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    Member Array hirundo82's Avatar
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    For what it is worth, the bill has died in committee.

    There is no state law in Virginia prohibiting concealed weapons on most college campuses--it is actually prohibited by law at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU, which my father refers to as VietCong University). Virginia has complete preemption of all firearms laws, so there can be no criminal charges brought against the CHL holder. However, many universities try to circumvent this by putting university policies in prohibiting weapons--these obviously do not apply to visitors to campus.. Virginia Tech last year expelled a CHL holder who had his handgun in class. The proposed bill would have prevented this.

    I am not even sure why this bill was necessary, though, as the Virginia AG's opinion on the authority of the Parks Department to prohibit concealed hanguns seems to apply to this situation as well (note universities are not prohibited places):

    A person’s privilege to carry a concealed handgun is considered universal within the Commonwealth subject to limited circumstances. The General Assembly has specifically set out those places where the carrying of a concealed handgun is prohibited: places of worship, courthouses, schools, places licensed for on-premises alcoholic beverage consumption, and such property as may be prohibited by the owner. Section 18.2-287.4 permits the carrying of concealed handguns in public places where the unconcealed carrying of loaded firearms is otherwise prohibited. Section 18.2-308 does not identify state parks as areas of prohibition for the carrying of a concealed handgun. Under accepted rules of statutory construction, the mention of one thing in a statute implies the exclusion of another.38 Further, the Department’s enabling legislation does not specifically authorize the Department to prohibit the carrying of a concealed handgun by valid permit holders.
    In fact, a student at my alma mater, James Madison University, sued the school a couple of years ago regarding their policy and the Attorney General withdrew as the school's counsel because of the contradiction with this decision.

    It seems strange that this would not pass--this is the state where two people were killed by an ex-student at the Appalachian College of Law. That shooting was only stopped by two students who ran to their car to get their handguns and confronted the shooter. Who knows what would have happened if they had not been delayed by the distance to get their weapons and had been carrying instead.

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    Member Array hirundo82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bumper
    It sounded to me like the exception to the existing law was being made so they could store (keep?) their guns in a dorm room. Maybe someone with a little more knowledge about exactly what this bill does will chime in.
    Link to legislation.

    It seems to mean that the universities would still be able to regulate firearms in dorms. Of course it is a moot point now.

    For any Virginians on the forum, VCDL has links to a number of bills of interest. I moved away from Virginia for school 6 months ago (to a state that does not allow anyone to carry in schools), so my voice does not matter to Virginia legislators any more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hirundo82

    It seems to mean that the universities would still be able to regulate firearms in dorms. Of course it is a moot point now.
    The problem is how can the university ever promise safety to the students? It can't.
    It really gets me angry when I have to disarm. I feel so helpless.
    The problem is these poli-tick people need to understand that criminals don't give a hoot about the law, so it won't stop then anyway. It just hurts the law abiding citizens.
    Dave

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    Member Array hirundo82's Avatar
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    Well, at least where I went, the university policy on searching dorm rooms was that resident assistants could only search the rooms for things in plain sight (I assume that the university police could search wherever they wanted). If I was still there and could trust my (theoretical) roommate not to squeal, I would just go with the philosophy that is was not against the law and concealed means concealed. I know I kept knives that were against university policy in my room when living in the dorm, and never had a problem. Just didn't leave them laying around the room.

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    People that live and work(professors) in universities tend to be bubble people (isolated from the rest of the world). They have the idea that there are no weapons on campus and the universities suppress most incidents so that attendance won't be compromised.
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