Due to unfortunate events across the United States on campuses like Virginia Tech and Deleware State many universities are making the executive decision to beef up their security staff, and giving those on staff weapons. Recently, two of the three state universities in Iowa have decided to put firearms into the hands of their security personnel, with the intentions of increased safety for the students and staff.
This act was made known by a Sept. 13 Des Moines Register article, which ultimately left many other colleges and universities discussing the same situation. According to this article, the University of Iowa and Iowa State University are the only universities in the Big 10 and Big 12 that do not allow their officers to carry firearms.
While an increase in the weapons that security officers handle has the possibility of increasing safety, it also has the position to backfire depending on the qualifications for those with the weapons.
At Simpson, many of the security personnel are students in training for jobs in the criminal justice field. As peers with most of these students, we would not feel comfortable with our security guards toting guns or other harmful weapons.
If there is an incident in which guns would be needed, the Indianola Police Department is less than two minutes away and they could deal with the situation, rather than a handful of inexperienced students. The police force has not only been trained in gun use, but also in how to defuse specific situations and would be a much better choice for the situation than our criminal justice majors.
Until we get a full staff of licensed professionals to carry guns at Simpson College, let’s limit the weapons to a pencil and pad of paper for taking down names of those underage partiers.