Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Politicians Do Nothing, Call it Something

Campus safety bill signed into law | KEPR CBS 19: This is the story of politicians congratulating themselves for doing nothing. Nothing effective anyway.

About one year ago, Rebecca Griego was murdered on the Campus of the University of Washington. She was killed by a stalker (her ex-boyfriend) who then killed himself.

She obtained a restraining order, and she asked the campus police for some protection. She was turned down. It wasn't feasible for the authorities to protect her, and school policy (and state law) forbids the carrying of defensive weapons.

She was stripped of any means of defense, and left on her own. She died. Now perhaps she didn't believe in self-defense or armed self-defense. We will never know what she thought because she worked in a defenseless-victim zone. (She was shot on campus... that rules out the possibility of calling it a "gun-free" zone.)

The university was fined 2100 dollars for failing to communicate workplace safety procedures.

So one year later, Washington state has passed a law mandating a safety plan for emergencies. Yeah, that will do it. Write a plan, put it in a nice binder, and store it on the Dean's credenza.

U-Dub set up a website for communication in the wake of this incident. That should help.

But there is no talk of self-defense. There is no talk of concealed carry. At least they admit - or seem to - that their assumption "schools are safe" seems to be a thing of the past. (See that last link for a rundown on the violent crime that occurs on campuses.)

The truth is - a truth that politicians and parents don't want to admit - is that college and university campuses exist in the Real World™. And in the real world there are robberies and rapes and assaults. In the real world you will find gay-bashing bigots, and ex-boyfriends turned murderer. In the real world, when you need them most, police are minutes away. They cannot and will not protect you all the time.

Where would you rather go to school? Someplace like the Appalachian School of Law, where students have stopped a shooting with their own weapons (NOT concealed carry), or the University of Washington with their very own website?

Self-defense is a human right, but all together too many campuses limit access to the effective means of defense. This just leaves the field open to the nut cases who won't obey your "no crime allowed" signs anyway.

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