Students protest anti-gun policies

Joshua Farmer

Signs like the one pictured on a library door are posted on all entrances to campus buildings. The Students for Concealed Carry will wear empty holsters though the week in protest of university policies that ban firearms on campus.  Paul Heckert  |  The Appalachian
The Students for Concealed Carry have organized a protest through April 12 to demonstrate against college and university policies that ban firearms on campuses.

Students like Appalachian State University criminal justice major Alexander Pfeffer are wearing empty holsters around campus this week.

Pfeffer, a senior, said he sympathizes with the SCC’s sentiment because he feels that campuses would be safer if the right people were carrying the right weapon.

“I don’t want to be a vigilante and go out and stop [crime], but I definitely think that there are circumstances where if there’s a person that’s committing a crime that is inherently dangerous to human life, then you should be able to respond appropriately,” Pfeffer said. “If you can put an end to the matter without anybody getting hurt, you should be able to do so.”

But ASU Police Chief Gunther Doerr said that guns on campus could create more problems, opening the door to firearm theft, misuse and accidents.

“Introducing more guns on campus is not going to make it any safer,” Doerr said.

Dewey Mullis, a sophomore criminal justice major and ASU American Corrections Association member, said that he wouldn’t feel comfortable going to a school that allowed citizens to carry guns on campus.

“I don’t know how it would make our campus safer,” Mullis said. “It could provide a distraction for a lot of people.”
Dewey said that if police arrive on a scene where multiple people have guns in hand, it could cause confusion for law enforcement.

“It may increase panic and mayhem,” Mullis said.

Doerr said that the organization did contact the department before carrying out the protest.

“As long as they are peaceful, we are fine with it,” Doerr said.

Story: JOSHUA FARMER, News Editor

Photo: PAUL HECKERT, Photo Editor