Student hopes to bring national organization to campus

Karen Plunkett, Reporter

Preston Buckley, a NKU business major, is looking to bring a national organization that advocates for the legalization of concealed carry on college campuses for purposes of self-defense.

Buckley has been around firearms his whole life and at the young age of six he started learning how to use them.

“One of the things that gets repeated and drilled into your noggin is that you do not unholster or pull your weapon out until it’s necessary,” Buckley said.

Buckley has spent a lot of his spare time researching and studying the law system and one day hopes to work in law enforcement. He has recently become a Facebook administrator for Kentucky Students for Concealed Carry, a national organization.

“Our main goal is to start informing students that you have the right to protect yourself,” Buckley said.

Students for Concealed Carry, formerly known as Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, started in 2007 among college students, faculty and staff who support law-abiding citizens with a concealed carry permit to bring their guns to campus for the purpose of self-defense.

Buckley, who has his concealed carry weapons license, thinks that students have the right to protect themselves on campus just as those who have their license are allowed to protect themselves when they go home or when walking down the street.

Kentucky Revised Statutes say that state universities have the right to adopt a no-firearms policy if they choose, and that is exactly what policy Northern Kentucky University has always had, according to NKU Chief of Police Jason Willis. The campus weapons policy states that “the possession of, use or storage of any firearm, ammunition, explosive device (including fireworks) or other deadly weapon in any form is prohibited on any Northern Kentucky University property or in any facility or on any property leased, or operated by the University, except as permitted by law.”

Willis’ personal opinion of guns on campus is that guns would be introduced in situations where they usually are not. He believes the campus would see a lot of accidental shootings if the policy were to change

Abby, a junior studio art major feels that campus is a safe place and that having students carry weapons on campus would not make anything better nor worse.

“I feel like knowing that people would be allowed to carry weapons on campus would not make me feel safe at all; i’m not sure if it would make me feel threatened but I know I wouldn’t be thinking that the students carrying guns are going to defend me if something were to happen.” Abby said.

“The whole point is not to cause a panic or a fear,” Buckley said “Our goal isn’t to have every student go around thinking they are John Wayne. That’s not a healthy situation. You have to be at least 21 so that will dramatically decrease the number of students.”

Buckley would like to start a conversation regarding firearms on campus because of the stigma that surrounds firearms and school shootings displayed by the media. Buckley acknowledges that this organization isn’t just for students; he would like professors to get involved as well.

“I just want to start getting information out there so I can start getting people in front of me so I can start educating people,” Buckley said. Because I can’t start an organization if I don’t have people.”