Gov. Deal has yet to sign or veto campus carry. However, in the past two weeks, since the bill was approved during the 2017 Legislative Session, a few details have surface that may make Deal less likely to sign.
Some of the changes the governor wanted to see in this year’s version of the campus carry bill included the blocking guns on certain areas of campus. Deal wanted to see administrative offices, areas used by students under 18, and areas used for discipline hearings left untouched by the bill.
However, as highlighted by GeorgiaPol.com, the grammar of the bill may prevent those areas from being protected. The way the clause protecting the administrative offices and discipline hearings is currently written is quite ambiguous:
(v) Not apply to faculty, staff, or administrative offices or rooms where disciplinary proceedings are conducted.
The missing comma between “offices” and “or” could mean that it would be illegal to carry weapons in administrative offices only when discipline proceedings are being conducted in them. Whereas the original intent seemed to be that all administrative offices and all places where discipline proceedings are conducted, should be kept gun-free.
Another issue lies with the term “discipline proceedings.” Under Title IX, schools are strongly encouraged to investigate potential cases of sexual assault outside of the disciplinary process. Most schools refer to this process as “grievance procedures.” Grievance procedures are separate from discipline proceedings and could therefore not be covered by the protections in the campus carry bill as currently written. That said, a person accused of sexual assault would, the way the bill is written, be allowed to carry a gun to the confrontation with his alleged victim.
Finally, although the bill protects areas where there are likely to be students under 18 taking classes, it completely leaves out the community involvement that some universities have, that leads to huge amounts of children on campus at random times. For example, Experience UGA is a program that the University of Georgia started in attempt to get every Clarke County student on the UGA campus every year. Every year up to 11,000 kindergarten through twelfth grade students visit the campus throughout the year. How could the university possibly be expected to protect these kids if guns are allowed on campus?
The only way to assure safety and preservation of the learning environment is to completely ban guns from college campuses. Call Gov. Deal and urge him to veto campus carry.
Gov. Deal’s Office: 404-656-1776