Friday, February 13, 2009

College Student with gun permit suspended for bringing gun to campus- must write a term paper

And, I'm going to offer some help on writing that paper.

A student at Western Oregon University with a concealed handgun license was arrested and suspended after being found carrying a Derringer and seen with a knife sticking out of his pocket. The Marine Corps veteran was suspended until the end of the term.

A licensed mental health professional must determine that he is not a threat to himself or others and notify the University before he can return. The school must consider that carrying a concealed handgun permit is a sign of mental unbalance.

The Oregon Firearms Federation paid for his lawyer. He will not be prosecuted.

As part of his "rehabilitation" to reenter college, he must also write a 10 page paper that: 
1. addresses the impact of possession of weapons on college campuses on others, and 
2. the importance of following the law.

Here's some suggestions he could use when writing his 10 page paper.

Regarding the impact on others of carrying a concealed handgun, he could do two things.

These won't win any points with college administrators, but they don't want to hear anything but liberal lip service to the public education ideals anyway.

First, on the impact on others of carrying weapons. Write of the importance of using a concealed handgun in protecting himself and those others from attacks on campus from a mass murderer such as seen at Virginia Tech and other gun free zones.

And, point out that in a state like Oregon, where concealed handguns are permitted, that in the course of everyday life, a person can be standing next to, or in a room with, or be  in an elevator next to a person carrying a licensed handgun many times during the day, and not even know it. 

Second,When he writes of the importance of obeying the law, he could write that it is absolutely important to obey the law, and that he was obeying the law by carrying a handgun with a lawful permit.

He did not break Oregon law. He is exempted from the prohibition by state law itself. “166.370 Possession of firearm or dangerous weapon in public building or court facility; exceptions; discharging firearm at school. (1) Any person who intentionally possesses a loaded or unloaded firearm or any other instrument used as a dangerous weapon, while in or on a public building, shall upon conviction be guilty of a Class C felony. (2) (a) Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection, a person who intentionally possesses: ... (3) Subsection (1) of this section does not apply to: ....(d) A person who is licensed under ORS 166.291 and 166.292 to carry a concealed handgun.”

The above statute is why he was not criminally charged.

Furthermore, The University is in violation of the law here. Only the legislature has the power to regulate firearms.

“166.170 State preemption. (1) Except as expressly authorized by state statute, the authority to regulate in any matter whatsoever the sale, acquisition, transfer, ownership, possession, storage, transportation or use of firearms or any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition, is vested solely in the Legislative Assembly.”

In addition to his pointing out Oregon law in this matter, he could write that a person has a right to protect himself with a lawful concealed handgun from other violent people who do not believe that any laws should be obeyed, and think nothing of killing others who they know are unarmed in gun free zones like college campuses, some shopping malls, and high school campuses.

The paper as I suggest it be written would earn a "F" for its message. It wouldn't show appropriate political correctness that the university is looking for. But it would make an "A+" in the real world.

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