Try to pry it from my cold hands

Leslie Arntz

Joining the ranks of the College Republicans, the Campus Right to Life organization and other conservative-natured groups, a Second Amendment Club is coming soon.

There was a swirl of media excitement surrounding the origins of this group and consequent university recognition, or lack thereof. The founder’s claims of initial rejection were denied by the administration — thus the truth is impossible to be determined as all evidence is found in the word of one side or the other. I’d still like to think the university was trying to repress one of my fellow gun-toting conservative right-wingers, but who did and said what really isn’t the point. What matters is that Kent State is now more than willing to recognize the club, granted a faculty adviser is found (as they are few and far between at Kent State) and the required paperwork is filed.

I look forward to joining this club once it gets off the ground. A shotgun hangs on my grandparents’ mantle; a filled gun cabinet rests 15 feet from my bed. Three years ago my younger sister and I received a .22 rifle to share. During the summer, my boyfriend and I set up pop cans and bottles in our backyard and take turns with the pellet or BB gun. Guns are part of my family’s tradition and the American heritage.

The ability to defend oneself and protect one’s family is as basic as American ideology can go. Our founding fathers recognized this and the fact that the right needed to be protected.

Taking guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens seeking the use for sport and leisure won’t reduce any crime. Criminals will still have guns. There is no way that can be avoided. All we hear about is how many people were killed with a firearm. What we don’t hear is how many of these situations are avoided with the use of guns — by nonviolent means. Simply brandishing a gun is often more than sufficient to dissuade an attacker. Are you going to be so quick to hold up a convenience store when you know there’s a good chance that everyone shopping there just may have a semi-automatic tucked inside a jacket or purse?

Every adult male in Switzerland is issued a firearm and serves in the military. Gun sales are prolific and relatively unregulated in some areas of Switzerland. Yet, the crime rate in Switzerland is drastically low. Everyone, male and female alike, is taught the proper way to handle a gun. The concept of preventing gun misuse by encouraging gun awareness and education is what this club hopes to achieve and is the best route this country can take.

Even by banning private ownership, there would be no way of keeping the weapons out of the country. The bad guys are still going to have their guns, even when you deny them to the good guys. Look at the big picture: guns are here, and they are staying. It’s the undeniable truth and all the wishing and hoping in the world can’t change it. You don’t have to own one, but stop trying to take mine away.

Leslie Arntz is a freshman magazine journalism major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].