Thursday, November 30, 2017

Receptiveness to Open Carry

Your opinion may vary. Based on a question in a comment on a The Firearm Blog post. 

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Want Campus Carry? Apply Now!

Want campus carry? Start asking for permission. We’ll help (but no promises). Not for K-12 schools!

State law allows for the presidents of Nevada’s public colleges and universities, known as the Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE), to grant written permission to carry firearms on campus. Unfortunately, most of the time permission to carry for self-defense is denied. The standard is so stringent, that even corrections officers attending classes have been denied permission. Unless it is highly likely that you will be victimized and can prove it, permission will be denied. NSHE policy effectively denies Nevadans their right to self-defense.

It’s time to change all that. For too long, Nevadans have been dissuaded from applying simply because “How do I apply?” is met with “Don’t bother, they don’t approve anybody.” You can help change that by asking for permission and showing that yes, there is a demand for students and citizens to defend themselves on campus.

Nevada Carry is providing a form, that includes hold harmless language and release of liability, to help you apply for permission to carry a concealed handgun on campus and/or store it in your car. The goal is to one, show demand exists, and two, track the process and exact reasons for denials, along with the persons involved.

If people are asking and being told “no” in secret, we can’t know the reasoning or persons behind the decisions. So if you apply for permission, please email us all copies of correspondence with the university officials, including denials. PERSONAL INFORMATION WILL BE KEPT STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL. This is a process; you will probably be told no, but that is part of how we start to change things.

NSHE’s Policy Terms

Presidents have discretionary authority, subject to the conditions set by the Board of Trustees. It is a highly restrictive “may issue” policy. The duty of the president is to: 
“An NSHE institution President who receives a written request from an individual to carry a concealed weapon on the campus must consider, investigate, and evaluate each request on a case by case basis, giving individual consideration to each specific request, and must make a determination on each request according to a need standard.” 
Permits are may issue and require a specific “need” under the most stringent interpretation of the word. Determining factors are:

1. a specific risk of attack presented by an actual threat;
2. a general risk of attack presented by the nature of the individual’s current or former profession, as established by actual evidence of increased risk of attack on such individuals; or
3. a legitimate educational or business purpose.

The application is reviewed. Often campus police call for an interview and any documentation regarding specific threats are requested. In most cases, a denial is then issued. Anyone who is denied has the right to request an appeal.

Read the full policy here. Most approvals are for non-carry reasons, such as class educational displays. Carry permission is granted mostly to security personnel, armored car drivers, and off-duty law enforcement teaching on campus.

Bare Self-Defense

For the average person to get permission for self-defense carry, the standard is far and beyond “good cause,” but practically requires that an attack has already happened or one is highly likely to be attacked. Elevated, but non-specific threats, or a general concern for one’s safety is not considered good enough to get permission to carry.

Self-defense because of what could happen is as good as reason as any to apply, so if that’s all the justification you wish to put on the form, why not? Asking for permission to carry after you have been victimized is no good. If NSHE wants to deny people, they will. What victim of random crime anticipates that they will become a victim in the near future? Do only those with verified death threats against them or abusive spouses deserve protection?

Recently, a woman was kidnapped at an UNLV parking garage and sexually assaulted at gunpoint. Once again, campus police failed to protect a student from being attacked. All the campus gun ban did was ensure that this woman was an easy target. However, she was able to grab the suspect’s gun, after being assaulted, and managed to get away. Opponents of campus carry say that the student will just be disarmed by an attacker; they never talk about the victim getting the bad guy’s gun. This situation should never have happened. As originally proposed, colleges and universities were never meant to be gun-free zones.

The historical record is clear; legal guns on college and university campuses have never been a problem. Legislators did not originally seek to deny concealed carriers the ability to carry on campus, but rather allowed it to happen as carrying a handgun legally was uncommon. Authorities were to use their discretion to the benefit of gun owners and not to deny practically every request.

Armed citizens and members of the educational community must be involved in the elections and actions of the Board of Regents. Regents who are friendly to gun owners can help create quality policies without resorting to the difficulties of the legislative process. Continue reaching out to students, teachers, and professors about the Second Amendment and the gun culture.

2017 is not 1989. Handguns and self-defense carry are popular in America and once again they are recognized by the majority as not only a right, but sometimes as a necessity. The old conventions about who carries are gun and the risk of accident vs. probability of a defensive gun use have changed. Old policies created under a paradigm that no longer exists and enforced today for political reasons need to be eradicated or altered to reflect today’s reality.

About the Form

The form is unofficial and not approved by NSHE. It was not written or reviewed by an attorney and none of this is legal advice. It is simply to help interested citizens apply in an uniform manner that might get some traction with NSHE officials. One who applies is strictly doing so on their own. Nevada Carry makes no guarantees and accepts no liabilities. We are not making a promise that you will get permission or that any of this will work.

What will probably happen is a denial. After receiving that, appeal because you can. Fight them every step of the way. Politely and respectfully, of course. If you list merely self-defense, it would be helpful to include statistics and a personally written statement about the dangers of random crime and how armed citizens can protect themselves. Tell them the things we tell each other about good guys with guns. If we can’t change their minds, then we can provide them with the undeniable truth. Make them articulate in detail why they are denying you.  

Then we can work on getting the Trustees to change their policy and one day, legislation to undo the law altogether. Again, apply, appeal, and provide Nevada Carry copies of all correspondence. PERSONAL INFORMATION WILL BE KEPT STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL.

Please do not apply to any campus that you do not attend or have business at.