Augusta University students react to campus carry bill signing

AUGUSTA (WJBF) — Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has signed a bill that will allow college students and others to carry concealed handguns on public campuses.

Starting July 1st, anyone on campus will be allowed to do so just as long as they have a weapons carry license.

“I don’t like it because I just feel it makes the campus more dangerous,” Freshman Patrice Collins said.

“I myself have a concealed weapons license, but this law opens up a lot of opportunity for people to start feeling like it’s okay for them to carry guns on themselves,” Sophomore Tom Mershon said.

Many are concerned that people will be allowed to conceal carry handguns on college campuses.

“I just don’t like the fact that somebody I could be sitting beside could have a firearm in their pocket,” Collins said.

University System Chancellor Dr. Steve Wrigley writing to faculty, “We recognize that many have strong feelings about this new law. It is important that we all work together across our campuses to implement the new law appropriately and continue to provide a top-quality education to our students.”

“The really isn’t anything that an institution can do besides adding more enforcement, radars and things that can detect these firearms,” Mershon said.

The campus carry law does have some restrictions. Guns will not be allowed inside:

– Athletic buildings or events.
– Dorms, fraternity houses and sorority houses.
– Faculty and administrative offices.

“We also have campus security and police, so they already have guns so why do students need to carry guns as well?” Collins said.

Supporters of the new law say it will keep students safe if a shooter shows up on campus as there will be more people armed to defend themselves, however, AU students don’t seem to agree with that theory wishing that the governor would just keep the law the way it was.

“There should be a lot of restriction and there should be a lot more background that goes into owning one,” Mershon said.

Again, this law takes effect July 1st at all state colleges and universities.

Breaking the law could mean a misdemeanor charge and a fine.

If you break the law without having a carry license, you could be charged with a felony, receive a $10,000 fine and get prison time.

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