gun free signAfter the recent shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon, quite predictably President Obama called for more gun control in a televised press conference.

But honestly, can anyone name one law that would’ve prevented the shooter from walking around the Umpqua campus, killing as he pleased?

No. Because in reality, it’s not the availability of guns that’s the problem. It’s law abiding citizens’ adherence to policies creating gun-free zones that is the real problem.

William Jacobson, a clinical professor of law at Cornell Law School writes:

Gun-free zones presume the good intentions of those entering the zone. And the overwhelming majority have such good intentions. But for those who have bad intentions, gun-free zones turn schools and other locations into shooting galleries. The good people are unarmed, the evil person is armed.

So what can be done about it?

Thankfully, one Congressman has already thought this through.

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY-4) introduced the “Safe Students Act,” H.R. 86, to repeal the Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990.

Writes Rep. Massie:

The bill, originally introduced by Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) in 2007, repeals the Gun-Free School Zones Act (GFSZA) of 1990, which makes it “unlawful for any individual knowingly to possess a firearm at a place that the individual knows, or has reasonable cause to believe, is a school zone.” In 1995, the Supreme Court held the GFSZA unconstitutional, which prompted Congress to amend the bill in 1996. The Supreme Court has not ruled on the constitutionality of the amended Act.

In discussing the issue, Massie says:

Gun-free school zones are ineffective. They make people less safe by inviting criminals into target-rich, no-risk environments. Gun-free zones prevent law-abiding citizens from protecting themselves, and create vulnerable populations that are targeted by criminals.

A bigger federal government can’t solve this problem. Weapons bans and gun-free zones are unconstitutional. They do not and cannot prevent criminals or the mentally ill from committing acts of violence. But they often prevent victims of such violence from protecting themselves.

The legislation currently only has six cosponsors, Reps. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK-1), Jeff Duncan (R-SC-3), Louie Gohmert (R-TX-1), Steven Palazzo (R-MS-4), Rob Bishop (R-UT-1), and Morgan Griffith (R-VA-9).

Following the shooting this summer at the Navy and Marines Reserve Center in Chattanooga, TN, a number of representatives (including at least one Democrat) not listed above called for repealing existing laws that makes military bases and recruiting stations gun free zones.

But really, should there be any difference between military bases and recruiting centers and other gun free zones?

Now, liberals have been quick to point out that in Oregon, concealed carry permit holders are legally allowed to carry on any public property — including on the Umpqua Community College Campus.

They argue this weakens the argument against blaming gun free zones for this shooting.

Nevertheless, on the UCC website, it clearly states under “Dangerous Devices”:

Possession, use, or threatened use of firearms (including but not limited to BB guns, air guns, water pistols, and paint guns) ammunition, explosives, dangerous chemicals, or any other objects as weapons on college property, except as expressly authorized by law or college regulations, is prohibited.

And as noted by, “the school was essentially a hybrid of competing firearms regulations,” as the Oregon State Board of Higher Education’s policy outlaws guns from “college buildings.”

Sadly, there was certainly one man on campus that day who didn’t care about the conflicting and confusing anti-gun regulations.