The Atlanta Injury News Blog

Do Georgia Tech Students Want Guns?

A group of Georgia Tech students want guns on campus, reports the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Partly disturbed by some of the criminal activity at and around the campus and partly because of their politics, certain "pro-carry" movement groups at Georgia Tech, such as Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, are seeking to "even out the arms race between students and criminals" reports the AJC.

Under the current law, civilians are prohibited from carrying a gun on the campus of any Georgia college or university. According to Tom Daniel, senior vice chancellor for external affairs for the University System of Georgia, there is no place for guns in an academic environment:

We believe that the safest environment is to prohibit firearms from being present in our classrooms, in our labs, in our dormitories and on our campuses...

Putting aside the question of academic policy, Georgia law, and the politics involved in the pro-carry movement, no doubt any university faced with the choice of allowing guns on campus will be reluctant due to the legal reasons.

Fact is, even an inadvertent gun-shot going off and hurting someone could lead to a big personal injury payment by the school through a negligence action against the college. In an area of law known as premises liability, some courts have found such entities as universities, motels, convenience stores, and shopping malls liable for attacks because they did not exercise reasonable care in preventing victims from being harmed.

Whether or not the incident was foreseeable plays a big role in a court's evaluation -- and it is fairly reasonable to think that a court would say, "if you let guns onto your campus then you could reasonably foresee that they would go off by accident."

All in all, the pro-carry movement's efforts may be have to also face the simple economic issues of lawsuit, liability and the financial results they carry.

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