The General Assembly just sent the Campus Carry Bill to the Governor for approval. It is hard to say whether Gov. Deal, who is term limited from running for another term, will sign the bill into law or will veto it as he did last year. I think arming college students, even those who are licensed, is a bad idea.
I recognize that I am probably biased. At 34 years old (soon to be 35), my college days are long behind me. However, I deal with college students on a regular basis. As part of my practice, I handle what I call the college misdemeanors: DUI, Minor in Possession (of alcohol), Public Intoxication and Possession of less than an Ounce of Marijuana. Admittedly, I see a disproportionate number of college students with poor decision making skills and always in their worst moments. Still, some of the people we would be arming are those who will one day come strolling into my office after having made a huge mistake. If those in favor of Campus Carry could see just a few of the dash cam videos turned over to me by our solicitors, they would seriously rethink their position. But they shouldn’t.
It is not up to me to decide whether Campus Carry is a good idea. Nor is it up to the Governor or those folks working under the gold dome. Campus Carry is a right. The 2nd Amendment reads as follows:
“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
It does not say “sometimes” or “at the pleasure of the states or federal government.” It does not say “some people” or “in some places.” It says simply “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” That means college students and that means everywhere. It is unambiguous and it is unchanged.
I understand that the Supreme Court has taken it upon itself to alter the Constitution and has placed limits on the 2nd Amendment. However, the Supreme Court does not have the right to unilaterally amend the Constitution. That actually requires 2/3 of the state legislatures. The Supreme Court’s overreaching is really more symptomatic of a missing check and balance, i.e., when the high court violates the Constitution, who is supposed to stop them?
The point of all of this is to say that, just because the Supreme Court is not respecting the Constitution doesn’t mean our state legislators should follow suit. In fact, they swore an oath to uphold the Constitution when they assumed their offices. The Constitution is clear, even if the Supreme Court’s opinions do not reflect that clarity: Our right to bear arms shall not be infringed. I am not saying that arming college students is a great idea, but upholding the Constitution as written is.
This article was written by Robert Busbee, Attorney with the Busbee Law Group in Statesboro, Ga.