At the end of November, Michigan’s Senate voted to allow people who receive extra training to carry concealed weapons in previously gun-free zones such as colleges and churches. If passed by the Michigan House of Representatives, this bill will make several changes to the concealed weapon law already in place.
“I am a fan of the right to bear arms, but I don’t dig when folks get overzealous about it,” said Eastern Michigan University freshman Jordan Ditsch. “I’m not sure how I would feel about someone carrying on campus because of the whole human beings are complicated creatures thing.”
If the bill passes, people will have to receive enhanced training beyond the basic requirements of regular concealed carry permits, to carry anywhere, including gun-free zones. They will also have to spend extra time at the gun range.
EMU sociology professor Gary Bell said he thinks the bill is a bad idea.
“I think it’s insane. There are other ways to protect ourselves; allowing to carry weapons only increases violence in society,” he said.
After an application is filed, decisions on granting the person a license would have to be made within 45 days.
Bell said, “Many, many studies have shown that the more available a weapon is, the more likely that a person will use one.”
Kasey Orr, a post-bachelor student at EMU, said, “I’m not a fan of people being able to carry concealed weapons. Places like churches and schools should be free from guns. There is too much violence already in the world and I think carrying concealed weapons would add to the violence.”
This bill would eliminate the counties’ concealed weapon licensing boards and sheriffs would take over this responsibility. County Clerks and state police would still have roles in the process and sheriffs would continue to consult with prosecutors and the police on applicants.
Jacob Revels, an EMU sophomore, said, “I personally don’t feel comfortable with the fact that people can carry concealed anywhere. I think it wouldn’t be a safe learning place if firearms are allowed.”