S. 242 is a bill to make SC law mirror federal law with regards to allowing concealed weapon permit (CWP) holders to possess a concealed weapon on school property. The federal “gun free school zones” law allows a SC CWP holder to possess a concealed weapon on school property, while SC law currently makes doing so a felony unless school authorities give permission to do so. But, considering the liability issues created by giving permission, such permission is virtually impossible to get.
The best available research reveals two very important facts.
First, virtually all mass public shootings occur where it is illegal to possess a firearm. By definition, criminals do not obey the law. Therefore, any “gun free school zone” laws only prohibit the good guys from possessing firearms on school property, and do absolutely nothing to stop the bad guys from possessing firearms on school property.
Second, the best way to save human lives when an active shooter is involved is for a good guy with a gun to engage the active shooter as quickly as possible. Waiting for backup only leads to more innocent lives being lost. When seconds can mean the difference between life and death, the police are always minutes away.
What we do know is that the current SC laws and policies will not save lives when a suicidal maniac is intent upon killing as many innocent people as possible. In every one of the mass school shootings, there was a teacher who – if armed – might well have been able to engage the active shooter and saved innocent lives. But, unfortunately, SC law is more restrictive than federal law and prevents good guys with guns from stopping bad guys with guns – which will inevitably lead to more innocent lives being lost.
S. 242 will change SC law to best reflect the realities of life instead of the Norman Rockwell visions of life. S. 242 will serve to better protect our children.