Students Aim for Gun Rights on Campus
Group Advocates for Concealed Weapons to Protect Against College Shootings
By Brigid Schulte
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, February 15, 2009; Page C05
HARRISONBURG, Va., Feb. 14 -- Kyle Smith agreed to play the bad guy.
In a scenario eerily designed to imitate the Virginia Tech massacre, when a lone gunman shot and killed 32 people in the nine minutes it took for campus police to respond, Smith burst into a classroom here Saturday, his right index finger pointed as if it were a gun drawn, and immediately "shot" the teacher between the eyes.
"You people treated me wrong," the freshman yelled, a little sheepishly. "I just can't take it anymore."
As the four students in the room screamed, hit the floor and crouched under desks, he methodically fired five more shots with his finger and "killed" them all. In 23 seconds, it was over.
"You're all dead," Shawn Deehan, a gun rights advocate from GunRightsWeek.org, told the jeans-clad James Madison University students crumpled on the floor and waiting for his cue that the reenactment was over. "A great rate of response from law enforcement is six minutes. Six minutes. If you don't care if you live or die, that's a suitable response. But if you're concerned about living another day, another minute, then that's too long."
Then Deehan reran the scenario the way he and other gun rights advocates would prefer: with the teacher and two students carrying concealed weapons.
Only Utah allows students and teachers to carry weapons on college campuses. Most other states leave it to the discretion of university administrators. And nearly all -- save Blue Ridge Community College in Virginia and Colorado State University -- have decreed that weapons on campus are a bad idea.