Commentary: No reason to ever allow guns on school property

This editorial appeared in The Rock Hill Herald.

Two days after the 10th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre, a panel in the S.C. Senate voted 16-0 to allow gun owners with concealed weapons permits to drive onto school and college campuses with firearms in their cars. The full Senate will debate the measure.

Current law sensibly bars guns on school property. The bill approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee April 21 would exempt the vehicles of those authorized to carry a concealed weapon — as long as the gun stays locked inside the car.

The reference to Columbine is not frivolous. While the nation was busy reflecting on that tragedy and how to prevent future on-campus shootings, S.C. lawmakers were busy trying to make it easier for people to bring guns to schools.

A change in the law would be a convenience for gun owners with concealed weapons permits. That is all it is, nothing more.

One supporter said current law forces him to travel to his daughter's campus without a way to protect his family in case they break down. We would suggest he carry a cell phone with which to call the police if necessary.

The bill's supporters no doubt will argue that gun owners with permits to carry concealed weapons are responsible citizens who will keep their guns locked every time they visit a school. That will save them the hassle of having to remove their firearms from the car before going to a meeting with a teacher, a school basketball game or some other school event.

To read the complete editorial, visit The Rock Hill Herald.