Columbine survivor introduces bill to expand concealed-carry in schools
DENVER — Some students are calling for tougher gun-control laws after escaping last week’s horrific massacre in Parkland, Florida, but another school-shooting survivor is going in a different direction.
Colorado House Minority Leader Patrick Neville, who attended Columbine High School at the time of the 1999 mass shooting, has again introduced legislation to remove limitations on concealed carry in K-12 schools.
Under state law, concealed-carry permit holders may bring firearms onto school property, but must keep them locked inside their vehicles.
Mr. Neville, who has introduced the bill annually since he was elected in 2014, said the current law “creates a so-called gun free zone in every K-12 public school.”
“This act would allow every law-abiding citizens who holds a concealed carry permit, issued from their chief law-enforcement officer, the right to carry concealed in order to defend themselves and most importantly our children from the worst-case scenarios,” Mr. Neville said in a statement.
The Republican lawmaker has argued that more of his classmates would have survived the attack if some faculty had been armed. Twelve students and one teacher were killed by two teen gunmen at the high school in Littleton, Colorado.
“As a former Columbine student who was a sophomore during the shootings on April 20, 1999, I will do everything in my power to prevent Colorado families from enduring the hardships my classmates and I faced that day,” Mr. Neville said. “Time and time again we point to the one common theme with mass shootings, they occur in gun-free zones.”
A hearing on the bill, which stands little chance of passage in the Democrat-controlled House, is slated for Tuesday.
Some Parkland survivors are helping lead the March for Our Lives in D.C., a March 24 national protest aimed at pushing for stricter gun-control laws in order to “end gun violence and mass shootings in our schools today.”
Meanwhile, the Women’s March is urging students and teachers to walk out of their schools on March 14.
A 19-year-old gunman has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder stemming from Wednesday’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.
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