Kansas Campus Gun Bill Draws Criticism

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TOPEKA, Kan. — Kansas lawmakers are considering a bill that would make it easier for people to carry guns on college campuses, but the proposal is generating a backlash from campus leaders across the state.

The Personal and Family Protection Act, in its original form, would allow people to bring guns on college campuses – a move that some lawmakers say would make campuses safer for students. But the proposed legislation has not gained many fans on college campuses – where it’s currently illegal to carry a gun in Kansas.

Wichita State University student president Matthew Onstott says that it should remain illegal to carry a gun on campus.

“You give a student a poor grade, because they deserved that poor grade, they don’t think they deserve that poor grade, well they now have a weapon,” said Onstott.

The proposed legislation, by Rep. Forrest Knox, R-Altoona, states that people who are licensed to carry a concealed gun would be allowed to bring a weapon into a state or city facility unless the building had adequate security measures, such as electronic screening equipment and guards, to ensure that no weapons could be brought in.

The bill has also faced criticism from university police departments across the state, prompting an amendment that would let college campuses, along with nursing homes and hospitals, still ban guns. But it would allow people to bring concealed weapons inside courthouses and city halls.

On Friday, the state Senate leader, Sen. Steve Morris, R-Hugoton, told the Lawrence Journal-World that there was little chance of the bill passing the senate.

“I think it’s a bad idea,” said Morris.

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