Group at Florida Poly want guns on campus

Posted at 9:20 PM, Feb 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-23 07:23:15-05

Florida Polytechnic University had its first ever student-run protest.

The subject matter: Guns on campus.

Nearly a dozen students held signs in support of a bill that recently stalled in the state senate that would allow concealed weapon holders to carry a gun in the classroom.

Right now state universities ban all weapons on campus.

"We are trying to inform and advocate the voice of the students who are left defenseless," said Andre Goode, who organized the protest.

Goode said he was traumatized growing up, watching mass shooting after mass shooting on university campuses.

He believes if students were allowed to carry, it would eliminate the threat and save lives.

"Gun free zones allow for criminals to choose and pick their victims without worry about being retaliated against," he said.

Florida Poly believes the best way to keep its students safe is to focus on public safety. For instance, they have 36 emergency towers around campus and their average response time is under three minutes.

The school has six full time armed officers and the chief hopes to hire more soon.

"A well trained, well-staffed law enforcement team, coupled with robust mental health services, gives us the best opportunity to prevent crisis situations and minimize threats on campus," said Crystal Lauderdale, director of marketing and communications for the university.

Even if the law did change, it would not effect most of the students fighting for it, since you can't have a concealed weapons permit unless you're 21 or older.

Goode said they're fighting on principle, and they're not stopping.

"This is our civil rights, being able to defend ourselves," he said.