Posted January 31, 2013 by Cooper Point Journal in Letters & Opinion

Armed for the Job

“We don’t trust you with the guns you have,” a statement made by Austin Nolan during a live Q13 Fox report, is a statement based on false and sensationalized institutions of fear, paranoia and angst. I walk on eggshells everyday, painstakingly mindful of my vocabulary, tone, and what ideas I express so as not to trigger, offend, or make someone feel uncomfortable. I’m still struggling with some of these concepts, but I’m working on them. I can only ask that the same courtesy be extended to me when I say that I would feel safer on campus with police officers that could save my ass (and yours) if some yahoo opened fire on Red Square. Could they do this now with the equipment and training they have at present? Let’s give them all the resources they need before we find out.

We all deserve to be safe. Period. Regardless of political opinion or lack thereof, gender, race, sexual orientation or who we smoke with after seminar, everybody on this campus has the right to be safe.

With that being said, many students on campus don’t feel safe with the guns that police already carry. There is a point here, but I’m more worried about the people who have guns that are concealed, or people who are mentally unstable and have access to a handgun. A rifle never really did scare me, simply because I’d see it coming and I haven’t seen a better shot than my old man. A police officer has a lot of people to answer to if and when they take a life, and they will not do so unless it is absolutely necessary. The laws in this country are a matter of public record and are accessible. Check them out sometime. Do you think a cop will break them when they are the ones upholding and enforcing those laws?  If anyone thought that a police officer was a power hungry misogynist with a gun in a polyester suit, you are not only wrong, but downright foolish. Police officers are doing their jobs, just like anyone else, only their job has a little more risk.  A lot of you out there are outraged at this point, disagree with me and probably want to come find me; I say go for it. After all this is a place of acceptance and learning… right?

This is a very specific school. Very specific kinds of people go here. With this in mind, it is plausible that a right wing extremist could open fire. Handguns, although powerful, don’t have the best accuracy, even in the steadiest of hands, from a distance. To bring down – and I do not necessarily mean shoot-to-kill, but to safely disarm a shooter, a rifle is required.

The Evergreen State College police should be equipped with rifles, shields and the proper training to utilize these tools safely and accurately to prevent casualty or injury to students, faculty, staff and visitors.

By Erin Welker