Abolishing Gun-Free Zones is the Solution to Mass Shootings

Anurup Kankanhalli | United States

It has been over a month since the massacres in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. Yet the emotionally-charged appeals for gun-free zones and restrictions on firearms and ammunition have not stopped.

The notion that restricting ordinary people’s access to firearms will end mass shootings is far from new. However, for decades, arbitrary gun control measures have failed miserably. They failed from American cities like Washington, D.C., and Chicago, to nations abroad like the U.K. and Germany. Given the vast multitude of readily observable examples that point to the ineffectiveness of gun control, it is absolutely staggering that the anti-gun left has yet to learn this lesson: When sufficiently motivated, mass murderers will find any means of carrying out their vile intentions.

Whether it be the pervasive nihilism dominating modern culture, Islamic Salafism, or white supremacy, the motives behind these heart-wrenching attacks are most often associated with deep mental instability. That being said, one other common denominator of mass shooters; they carry out their attacks in areas where the prey is disarmed. Colloqualized as “gun-free zones”, these areas strictly forbid the open or concealed possession of all types of firearms.

But what effect have gun-free zones really had?

Numerous studies show that approximately 94 percent of mass shootings occur within gun-free zones. Gun-free zones don’t work. With the average police response time ranging between 5.46 minutes to over 9 minutes, this begs the question: how can mass shootings be stopped?

The answer is clear: Mandate that all “gun-free zones” with high population densities (typical targets for mass murder) require armed, tactically-trained security personnel be made first responders to all active shooter incidents. Done either through insurance liability requirements or through the law, this will both serve as a psychological deterrent to would-be shooters and limit casualties by reducing response times.

Mandating policies that can potentially put innocents in harm’s way without providing the means of protecting them are grounds for willful disregard of public safety. Not only will this proposal make the U.S. a safer place for the average person, but have a profound effect on the ability of government bodies and business owners to restrict individuals from defending themselves. This would truly make it a common-sense solution over existing and proposed surveillance, gun registries that can be abused, and outright restriction of the natural self-defense rights of upstanding and innocent human beings.

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