The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Protesting sides join debate over concealed guns

By Shelly Williams/editor in-chief

TCC has seen students respond on both sides of the controversy over carrying weapons on campus topic within the past month.

Now, those who sported empty gun holsters around campuses last week to support guns on campus and those who helped give 500 signatures to a NE Campus petition against the concealed carry measure in March can join under one roof.

Hosted by NE’s Student Political Awareness Club, representatives from both sides of the State bill about concealed carry on campus will debate 12:30-1:30 p.m. April 20 in the NE cafeteria.

“We are hosting the event to inform the student body of this particular bill because it affects them directly,” said SPAC president Peter Salas.

The debate will have three representatives from each side of the issue and will be moderated by SPAC advisor Joan Johnson. Salas, who has a concealed handgun license, will be one of the representatives speaking against the bill.

NE student Clayton Smith, who represents TCC’s Students for Concealed Carry on Campus chapter and sued the college for preventing his group from holding an empty-holster protest in December 2010, said the debate will be a good way to educate students on both sides of the issue.

“A lot of people have some emotional opinions about firearms on campus, which is fine,” he said. “I want people to remember to look at the facts.”

Smith said he hopes the debate will address some misconceptions about the issue, like how 71 colleges have concealed carry and haven’t reported any problems.

Salas said he wants students to understand people who are not even affected by the issue are making the decisions.

“I am comfortable saying that all the legislators in the House and Senate have completed their education and will not be on campuses as frequently as students who the decision is being made for,” Salas said.

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