Campus carry bill vetoed at Capital U
- A bill allowing concealed carry on Capital University's campus passed the student senate by a 2-1 margin, but was vetoed by the president.
- The university expressed hesitancy about the idea, insisting that statistics show it already has a safe campus.
After a female student was sexually assaulted at Capital University last week, several Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) members in the Student Senate drafted a bill which called upon the university to recognize the rights of students to defend themselves.
The bill, which came after a student was assaulted by a serial groper in the university's library, was written by Sam Waldvogel, Garrett Kehr, and Haley Whener, and was passed with a 12-6 margin. However, the bill was vetoed the next morning by Student Government President Jason Fugate.
It demanded that the university adopt policies similar to other institutions of higher education that recognize the rights of concealed carry license holders to possess firearms on campus.
“Students are tired of being viewed as easy targets by criminals,” Waldvogel said in a press release. “We have a fundamental right to defend ourselves by any means available to us and it’s time Capital University recognized that. As a student body we will tolerate nothing less than no more victims.”
Capital University welcomes student opinions, but indicated that it is unlikely to change their anti-gun policies.
“Before we really look to change that policy we are certainly always open to dialogue, but before we change that policy we would really have to study and have lots and lots of conversation about all of the different impacts intended or unintended,” said Nichole Johnson, a spokeswoman for the university, told NBC4 Columbus.
Johnson said the university believes guns on campus could hinder more than help.
“Our statistics show consistency, year over year we are a safe campus. We are not a perfect campus, there is no perfect campus. There’s no perfect place, crime happens everywhere,” Johnson said.
Waldvogel, Kehr, and Whener, along with other Student Senate members and YAL, are working to overturn the veto.
Whener is also the president of the Students for Self Defense Club, and while she is not old enough to be a permit-holder, she would welcome guns on campus.
"I would feel more safe knowing that someone else around me is able to protect themselves," Whener said.
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @kelseyncarroll