In a move which surprised very few, Colorado State University’s Board of Governors went against the request of students and law enforcement, handing down a new campus policy which banned firearms from the college campus.
The decision, which sparked national and even international media attention, demonstrates the complete disregard by the administration towards the expressed will of law enforcement, the consensus of the student body, the factual evidence, and the state concealed carry law.
The policy states in part, “All Colorado State University Employees, including faculty and staff, Students, and Visitors/Guests are prohibited from possessing, using, or displaying Weapons on Campus without written authorization from the Colorado State University Police Chief, whether or not a federal or state permit to possess or conceal the Weapon has been issued to the possessor.” (Click here to read the full document.)
In an interview with the Colorado Springs Gazette, Sheriff Jim Alderden emphatically stated his opposition to the ban, even refusing to allow CSU police to use his jail for arrests of students, faculty or staff caught in violation of the policy. “If anyone with one of my permits gets arrested for concealed carry at CSU,” said Alderden, “I will refuse to book that person into my jail. Furthermore, I will show up at court and testify on that person’s behalf, and I will do whatever I can to discourage a conviction. I will not be a party to this very poor decision.”
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The CSU Police website still provides instructions to students on how to check firearms with college authorities, but an article in the Pueblo Chieftain notes that this applies only to the Fort Collins campus, given the absence of any police force on the Pueblo campus. The article also notes that firearms in cars may still be permitted.
Students for Concealed Carry on Campus harshly condemns the ban, and the Board of Directors for enacting it. This ban is a sheer insult to the law-abiding populace at CSU, who before now have not been subject to the arbitrary and unenforceable “gun-free zones” which become target-rich zones for the sick and murderous persons waiting to become the next unthinkable headline. By depriving law-abiding citizens of the right to effective protection – the same right they’ve held and safely kept for nearly seven years – they have insured the vulnerability of students, faculty and staff on campus for years to come.
This ban effectively protects only criminals, who may now assail their victims with confidence, secure in the knowledge that would-be victims have been deprived of the tools for resistance and cannot pose a threat.
Given the rapid decline in crime over the nearly 7 years of concealed carry at the college, safety of students is clearly not a priority for the college. The fact that the ban does not go into effect until August further confirms that fact.