Ohio bill would allow guns on college campuses

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - A new Ohio bill would allow guns on college campuses.

Representative Ron Maag is introducing this legislation and he says these are reasonable, practical changes to Ohio gun laws. Ohioans would also be able to carry concealed guns in churches, daycares, private airplanes and government buildings.

The proposed legislation has people talking.

"I don't think it's the best idea," says Kenny Day.

"There's definitely respect to the second amendment that needs to be considered," explains Brian Pack.

"I totally disagree about that," says Alejandro Colon.

The campus of Virginia Tech experienced the deadliest college campus shooting in our country's history. Some local students think this bill could lead to a similar tragedy.

"I don't think having that permit will stop violence, it will probably increase it if you had all these people walking around with guns," explains Cherisse Johnson.

Johnson says it's especially dangerous with the range of stress and emotions that college students deal with on a day to day basis.

"Regardless of whether you have a concealed weapons permit, that does not mean that you know how to handle your emotions," adds Johnson.

"It's not necessary. It's a school environment, not a need for guns," says Alejandro Colon.

But proponents for the bill argue that these people with a concealed carry are trained and responsible with guns, and it's their right to be able to protect themselves if need be. If UC did allow guns on campus, one student suggests a requirement that may resolve some issues.

"If you could easily show, wear some kind of badge or something saying that you have some kind of certification that might make it easier to accept," say Brian Pack.

Just last month, UC police sent out an emergency alert about a gunman on the campus. It turned out that a faculty member on campus saw a person adjusting the gun in their belt walking near a campus building. Nothing came of the incident, but some students say it would take some adjustments to the alert system from police to help prevent confusion.

"If people are just allowed to bring guns on campus, I feel like the text message alerts like that would subside and it might not alert us of a true threat," says Day.

Several of the colleges in Greater Cincinnati declined to comment on the issue and didn't want to speculate on whether they support this bill.

The Hamilton County Police Chiefs Association plans to further look into this issue at their next meeting next month to determine if they support the bill or not.

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