Michigan State is, understandably, a little shaky right now.
It wasn’t that long ago that a gunman set foot on its campus and killed several people. It was a deliberate and premeditated attack and it left a lot of people freaking out.
Yet their response was to ban guns on campus. That’s not a particularly useful move considering it wouldn’t have stopped the killer from taking those lives, but such a ban might prevent a law-abiding citizen from preventing another such atrocity from taking place.
Now, Michigan State is going to have to go to court over its gun ban. From a press release by Gun Owners of America:
This past Thursday, Gun Owners of America (GOA) and the Gun Owners Foundation (GOF) filed an amicus brief in support of Joshua Wade in his challenge to the ban on firearms on campus at the University of Michigan. The case is currently under the consideration of the state’s supreme court.
Mr. Wade, who holds a state issued concealed carry permit, had previously applied for an exemption to the current ban with the University’s Director of Public Safety, which was denied. In turn, Mr. Wade challenged the University policy under the State of Michigan’s preemption statute.
Erich Pratt, GOA’s Senior Vice President, issued the following statement:
“GOA has been on the front lines fighting to restore Second Amendment rights to college students across the country. Earlier this month we helped to get campus carry passed in West Virginia, and we hope that those watching this case in Michigan will recognize, especially in light of recent events, that students deserve the ability to defend themselves on-campus.”
Sam Paredes, on behalf of the board for GOF, added:
“GOF is excited to lend our support to Mr. Wade in this case, as the state’s preemption law does not permit public universities to enact these unconstitutional policies. As we have been saying since the Bruen decision, fall in line, or we will make you.”
GOA spokesmen are available for interviews. Gun Owners of America is a nonprofit grassroots lobbying organization dedicated to protecting the right to keep and bear arms without compromise. GOA represents over two million members and activists. For more information, visit GOA’s Press Center.
The fact that Michigan has preemption may be changed at some point in the not-too-distant future, what with the current makeup and predispositions of the legislature, but it’s on the books now and that’s what matters.
As a result, it seems unlikely that Michigan State University has the authority to unilaterally ban guns on campus.
However, we’ve seen other instances of similar challenges that were unsuccessful despite preemption being on the books. It really matters what other laws exist and whether colleges are somehow exempt from such statutes.
Obviously, I’m not an expert on Michigan law, so I can’t say for certain.
What I can do, though, is to note that no matter how many bans are put in place, a mass shooter won’t be stopped with rules on a piece of paper. After all, guns were prohibited in Parkland, Uvalde, Virginia Tech, the University of Virginia, and countless other schools that saw such violence.
Rules don’t stop killers.
Good guys with guns, however, can and do.