Gun Free Zones

From the Brady Campaign:

America has seen an epidemic of horrific gun violence at churches and synagogues, workplaces, health clubs, high schools, universities, police stations and now Army bases.? This latest tragedy, at a heavily fortified army base, ought to convince more Americans to reject the argument that the solution to gun violence is to arm more people with more guns in more places.? Enough is enough.

Take a look at that list of places. Notice a common “feature” of these places?

  • Churches, synagogues, and other places of worship are almost always listed as “gun free zones” in firearm-related legislation, overriding the choices of the individual attendees, the congregation as a whole, and the leader of that particular place.
  • The majority of workplaces prohibit employees from possessing firearms on their property, under penalty of being fired.
  • Health clubs, while perhaps not prohibiting firearms, are essentially “gun free zones” as people are more focused on exercise and carrying a gun while lifting weights or doing cardio can be impractical, if not dangerous.
  • High schools and universities are near-universally declared, either in law or policy, to be “gun free zones”.
  • It’s often illegal to carry a loaded firearm in a police station.
  • The carriage of loaded arms on military bases is prohibited, except in very limited situations (e.g. MPs, soldiers undergoing training [and then, the guns are only loaded while at the range and soldiers are searched for ammo and brass prior to leaving the range], etc.). CCW is strictly prohibited.

Basically, all of the places where such horrific violence has taken place are places where it’s prohibited or extremely impractical for ordinary people to possess firearms for self-defense.
I noted the decided lack of violent crime at the NRA Annual Meeting, even though thousands of people were carrying guns. Violence at gun shows is essentially unheard of; I think there may actually be more violent crimes committed in courthouses than there are at gun shows.
Even so, violent crime can occur anywhere. Fortunately, a prepared person can fight back and defend oneself, even if they don’t end up firing their gun. An unarmed, unprepared person cannot.
To summarize,

  1. Be prepared. No need to be paranoid, but being wary and prepared is key to staying safe.
  2. So-called “gun free zones” are completely ineffective at stopping criminals. To put it bluntly, they Do. Not. Work.

Fortunately, I think that more people are catching on to the fact that gun control doesn’t affect criminals and helps enable these terrible massacres. When the only examples of terrible violence that the Brady Campaign can list are places where guns are already prohibited by lawful people, that says a lot about the effectiveness of their proposals.