Miner Editorial | Allowing loaded weapons in vehicles parked on school campuses conforms to common sense
When first hearing that loaded guns may be allowed on school campuses, it’s fair to say a lot of people recoil at the notion. There’s more to HB 2693 that passed the Arizona House along a 31-27 party-line vote.
Currently it is legal to bring guns in vehicles on school campuses, as long as they are not loaded. Are people who do carry actually unloading their weapons before driving onto our campuses?
The topic of guns is one of the most sensitive to discuss in mixed company. Both sides of the gun debate should be able to agree that the deaths and injuries suffered by people with guns annually in the U.S. constitute a public health crisis, as stated by the National Institutes of Health.
The NIH also takes the stance that “finding ways to prevent such injuries remains one of the most important goals and challenges of public health.”
The Daily Miner Editorial Board encourages the state Legislature to move HB 2693 to Gov. Doug Ducey’s desk for his signature.
The two prevailing arguments for allowing loaded guns in vehicles, and these are to remain in the vehicles and should not be brought into school buildings, are to reduce injuries while handling firearms in a car and to allow a person who is under threat to continue protecting themselves.
It shouldn’t take much imagination to see that loading and unloading a gun in a car isn’t the safest of environments to do so. The reason for doing so in this situation is to comply with the law while dropping off children at school. Fumbling around with a gun prior to delivering a child at school and after picking one up is a recipe for disaster.
“I would not have wanted to stop a block away, unload my gun, go on to the school grounds and then come back and reload it again,” said Rep. Regina Cobb, R-Kingman, when HB 2693 was up for debate on the House floor. “Using guns for most of my life, I know that’s when accidents happen.”
Cobb also spoke about having an order of protection and feeling the need to protect herself. If she had to drop off her children at school under current laws, she would have to arrive on campus with an unloaded weapon.
An obvious place for someone who has an order of protection against them to assault the object of the order would be where they would be known to frequent at specific times. Dropping off and picking up children to and from school are a couple of those obvious places.
At this time, for the protection of all, those who carry guns should be allowed to keep their loaded weapons inside their vehicles while on school campuses.