Why does she need permission to protect herself?

My niece Lisa will be 23 years old in a few months and is getting her Masters degree in Atlanta. She recently posted this on her blog:

Atlanta is a scary place and I would appreciate being able to carry on campus.  One night I could not avoid walking across campus in the dark by myself and let me tell you, I had my switchblade in one hand and my keys in the other.  Luckily for ME, nothing happened, but there are plenty others who haven’t been so lucky, even in broad daylight. 

Would carrying a firearm have made me feel safer?  Yes, indeed, it would have.  I’m pretty sure a girl pulling out a handgun would make a “bad guy” run faster than seeing her with a knife, which is really only effective for self-defense in extremely close proximity.

I know there are a lot of people who are scared of guns and think that making carry legal on school campuses would increase crime, but let’s be honest: the ones who are going to commit a crime aren’t scared to break another few laws.  At least give me a fighting chance against them.

She can carry her handgun essentially everyplace else in Georgia (or Idaho) why does the state think she should not be allowed to protect herself while on campus? When, where, and how do they think they were granted the power to demand she ask for them for permission? And who made them god(s) and allowed them to deny her that permission?

12 thoughts on “Why does she need permission to protect herself?

  1. Georgia has a lot of restrictions on when and where people can carry concealed. One of them is college campuses; another, which has come up for repeal almost every year for the last I don’t know how many, is the “public gatherings” exception. Most of them date back to the Jim Crow era, and were only ever intended to be enforced against black people. These are facts. Now, however, the law is enforced much more uniformly, thus effectively depriving everyone–instead of a targeted, effectively disenfranchised group–of their rights. I was once in a bar (another statutory gun-free zone) in Buckhead, which is far from the bad part of town, when some moron decided to pull a gun and shot it. No one actually was injured, but the group I was with wisely decided to head somewhere else for the rest of the night.

  2. Publius,
    Georgia completely reformed its carry laws (in a good way) last year, and there are no more restrictions on public gatherings.

  3. Sweet! Well, I’ve been out of the state for a few years now & don’t pay as much attention as I used to. I remember when they finally allowed CC on MARTA. But the college campus section is a pain. I couldn’t even buy any guns when I lived there b/c I lived on campus–there was no place for me to keep them legally. In theory I could have rented a unit off campus or something, but rent was taking up over half my salary as it was.

  4. Georgia Institute of Technology, also known as North Avenue Trade School, is adjacent to some pretty bad neighborhoods. There have been lots of problems with break-ins of the dorms, despite the secured doors on the buildings. There are lots of muggings near and on campus. And the students are of course seen as prime victims for those needing money – since the kids are rich, naive and easily taken advantage of.

    I’d suggest getting rid of the switchblade, if that is what she actually carried, as some types are not legal in GA. Get a tactical folder knife with a strong blade, which can be opened with one hand just as fine, but is legal.

  5. Ah, yes. I, too, attended the North Avenue Trade school, and even lived in Techwood Dorm for a year or too. (Said dorm no longer exists.) Techwood Homes, the first “housing project” in Atlanta, is just across North Avenue from the campus. When I was there, the low-life trashy white folks lived on the Northern and Western sides of the campus, and the low-life trashy black folks in Techwood Homes. Tech expanded North and West and chased out the white trash, but the black trash are still there.

  6. Seconded. But be sure to get something. I always carried one, especially when out at night, even though I was on the other side of town. Our department had joint seminars at Tech once a month though, and if I couldn’t hitch a ride with someone I would have to bike across the city to get there. I remember going down Ponce one evening and 3 separate bums threw 3 different anti-white slurs at me as I was going past. No incidents–they were on foot, I wasn’t, and I wasn’t about to stick around–but it was far from comforting.

  7. For a fighting knife I highly recommend the Ka-Bar TDI. Its small enough not to be considered a weapon by most law books. It has a fixed blade which is more consistent and easier to deploy under stress, and it has a very intuitive design and ergonomics.

  8. Damn… all kinds of folks in the gunblogger community hail from Tech (myself included)… guess I should not be surprised :).

    As usual, my standard warnings against going into Homepark alone (even if you live there), against going south of the now-Tech-but-previously-Georgia-State dorms south of North Avenue alone (even if you live there), and against going west of Engineer’s Bookstore alone (even if you live there) all apply… As others have mentioned, the campus is surrounded by some not-so-savory areas, and, unfortunately, some of the lowlifes in those areas seem to be encroaching on the school.

    In addition to fixed blades, I would also recommend “flipper” folders – they have a little nubbin along the front of the blade (back of the handle when it is folded) that greatly accelerates the speed at which the knife can be deployed, especially if it is assisted.

    As for Tech, most of the fault lies with the Board of Regents for Georgia, but some definitely lies with the campus and staff… A full breakdown of the stupidity is here: http://www.facultygovernance.gatech.edu/GFGFAAS2010-021610-M-Attach4b.pdf.

  9. mikee – what I carry isn’t a switchblade, I just like to call it that. It’s a spring assisted folding knife. I should be less dramatic and more correct when blogging, it is true. I’ve updated my post to correct that.

  10. Carry anyway. Better to be tried than buried. Worst thing that can happen is she gets kicked out of school, alive.

    And it isn’t THAT hard to find a disposable gun, either. Can always say she wrested it away from the attacker, who apparently had TWO guns.

  11. Utah has allowed concealed carry permit holders on campus for a few years now, I carried everyday from fall 2007 to fall 2010. How many shootings, arguments gone bad, etc. . . do you remember hearing about from the University of Utah or any public university in Utah? Why would anywhere else in the country be different?

  12. I’d tell her to carry anyway– to tell anyone if she gets caught that that her father and uncle ORDERED her to carry– that it was not an option for her.

    “It was terrible…(sob)…My dad said I had to carry a gun or he’d pull me out of the program and send me home to work in the fields picking rocks….(sob).”

    When the choice is between living free and obeying stupid shit laws that can get you severely harmed or killed, which decision carries more common sense and dignity?

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