Spoiler: It’s guns. It’s obviously guns.
Oakland University, a school located in Auburn Hills, Michigan, is taking a novel approach to the question of school shooters: It is arming its faculty with hockey pucks. The idea, in case it’s not clear, is that professors will be able to throw their hockey pucks at insane, psychopathic gunmen, thereby stopping them from carrying out their massacres.
Well, okay then.
Oakland University is what’s know as a “gun-free zone,” which it actually isn’t. “Gun-free zones” are generally not in fact gun-free, at least in principle; they are merely places where law-abiding people do not carry their weapons. Movie theaters, public parks, elementary schools, university campuses, hospitals: All of these are “gun-free” only to the extent that lawful citizens obey the little signs at the entrance. There is nothing in such regulations to stop crazy murderers from bringing in a lot of weaponry and injuring or killing a lot of people, and indeed these terrible incidents do happen in “gun-free zones” from time to time.
By its own tacit admission Oakland University acknowledges this: It has a ban on guns on its campus, but it is handing out hockey pucks to guard against the very real and easy possibility of someone violating that ban. Go figure. Here’s a modest suggestion: Instead of distributing hockey pucks to professors—pucks, which would almost certainly be entirely useless against someone armed to the teeth—why not let faculty carry firearms? It’s not crazy proposition. Most professors would likely decline to do so. But there are surely at least a few concealed carry permit holders who would be open to the idea. And their carrying a gun on campus would be a far better deterrent to a would-be shooter than a professor with a hard rubber disk.
Campus administrators tend to be very biased against the carrying of guns. There’s no reason for that; concealed carriers have consistently been shown to be extremely careful and law-abiding citizens, for obvious reasons. Maybe instead of handing out hockey pucks to protect against a terrible possibility, Oakland University should consider the self-evident solution: Remove the gun ban and let people carry concealed. Those that don’t want to, of course, are still welcome to carry hockey pucks.
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