Our Founding Fathers carry so much weight nowadays in the gun-discussion that it's highly significant when they weigh in on topics like campus-carry, right?
So it turns out that Thomas Jefferson, who designed and built the University of Virginia, and James Madison, who wrote the Second Amendment and sat on UVa's Board of Visitors, had very clear opinions on this issue.
They didn't support campus-carry, and they wouldn't have supported Charlie Collins' HB 1077, the bill that would allow faculty and staff to carry loaded handguns on Arkansas college campuses. And unlike Representative Collins, Jefferson and Madison thought their Board ought to have a say in the governance of their university. And they didn't write legislation, like HB 1077, that would prohibit their Board from governing.
But that's just Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. What did they know about guns, law, governance, and higher education?
And then there's Admiral William H. McRaven, who is now the Chancellor of the University of Texas system, which is also one of the largest public state-university systems in the country.
Read about him. He's had some experience with guns and the people who use them—he spent his military career, after all, in special operations.
He was also the guy who designed and executed Operation Neptune Spear. You might want to read up on that too.
Long story short: Operation Neptune Spear is the code-name for the mission that took down Osama bin Laden. Admiral McRaven is also against campus-carry. You can download his full statement about that subject here.
But here's my opinion, and it's not complicated: when it comes to campus-carry, I'm not going to second-guess the folks who wrote the Second Amendment, the Declaration of Independence, and the guy who nabbed Osama bin Laden and now oversees the University of Texas system, housed in one of the most gun-friendly states in the Union.
Call me crazy, but I'll defer to Madison, Jefferson, and McRaven on these matters. I'm happy to have them on my team opposing Representative Collins' bill to put guns on our campuses.
Arkansas, however, is not the only state facing these bills. At Florida A&M, for example, Police Chief Terence Calloway has clearly articulated his opposition to a similar bill.
Simply put, campus gun-bills are based on unsound policy, reflect theories of irresponsible governance, and are deaf to the wishes of the affected constituency.
And this is why so many authoritative voices have aligned against it, across this country, and across the centuries that span our history.
Let's hope our legislators are listening.