I frequently openly hypothesize that gun control advocates are really just projecting their own lack of self-control when they say the average citizen can’t be trusted with carrying a firearm for self-defense.

They’ll say they don’t need a gun because the police will protect them. They’ll say that citizens haven’t been trained or passed the mental screenings police have and aren’t able to carry a gun without endangering the public. High profile gun control advocates who hire armed security are, in my opinion, the epitome of that projection.

They’ll express concern that an armed neighbor will get so upset someone’s dog defecated in their yard he or she may just shoot the owner. They’ll say someone with a gun could get so upset over a fender bender that shoot-em-ups will occupy our streets. They’ll say that a licensee carrying a firearm into a class “D” liquor establishment may “accidentally drink” and during a subsequent heated discussion shoot up the bar.

Here’s just one of the predictions Toby Hoover of the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence offered up in the past:

“We are looking to prevent accidents, homicides and suicides. When you increase access to something, you increase the things that can happen.” and “A person who has a gun sees danger. We will have more shootings, more accidents.”

When restaurant carry was being debated in the state capital last year, she said:

“I am sure those who want to do this will claim they will never drink and they won’t when they are carrying their guns.”

When presented with facts and data that do not support their claims, people like Ms Hoover continue to offer anecdotal predictions of otherwise sane, responsible people snapping and going on a shooting rampage or at a minimum settling a minor dispute with gunfire. This behavior is one psychiatrists identify as a defense mechanism called projection. Sarah Thompson, M.D. writes in Raging Against Self Defense: A psychiatrist Examines The Anti-Gun Mentality:

“Projection is a particularly insidious defense mechanism, because it not only prevents a person from dealing with his own feelings, it also creates a world where he perceives everyone else as directing his own hostile feelings back at him.”

Projection is the root of many arguments against campus concealed carry. People like Ms Hoover express concern that students will settle grade disputes with guns. They also like to point to the “drunk frat boys” that already consume off-campus where they can by the way legally carry a firearm and aren’t shooting each other. In fact during the last two years, Woodfest and Chitfest, two very large block parties, were so full of the “drunk frat boys” and sorority girls and every other kind of imaginable drunk young person that Columbus Police were called out to control the crowds. And yet, not a single shooting occurred during any of the four nights at these events.

The one they always fall back on despite the overwhelming absence of incidents where campus carry is permitted is that emotionally charged young minds may make rash decisions and use a firearm to hurt someone or themselves. People like Ms Hoover paint a picture of college students as emotional heaps acting without reason or responsibility. This too is projection.

Recently, Ms Hoover added Andrew Mizsak, Jr to her team of apocalyptic fortune tellers at the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence. He recently commented in a story on WKYC TV3 that a Cleveland man carried a gun into a Westlake movie theater to carry out an Aurora Batman copycat massacre. He said the answer to a gun isn’t more guns and that if we see something we should say something to a law enforcement officer. His statement sounds a lot like, “I can’t trust myself with a gun to defend against another gun, so I should tell the police who I do trust and you should too.”

Mr Mizsak and Ms Hoover also believe that college students are bundles of emotions incapable of behaving rationally because they, well at least Andy, are bundles of emotions incapable of behaving rationally themselves.

No more than three years ago, Andrew Miszak, Sr. called Bedford, Ohio police because his messy adult son Andy, who lived in the home at the time, “threw a plate of food across the kitchen table and balled his fist up at his dad when told to clean his room.” Andrew, Sr feared his 270 pound son. Andy, Jr, despite working for the Board of Education, paid no rent and refused to do any housework, let alone take care of himself while living in his father’s home.

When the police arrived at 41 Santin Circle, they found 29-year old Andy, Jr sobbing uncontrollably. After a stern talking to by the police, Andy, Jr agreed to clean his room. Police left telling him that if he threatened his daddy again in a fit over being told to clean his room, something a lot of children don’t do, or for any reason that he would be charged with domestic violence.

The truth, Andy, is that student licensees are not crybabies that toss food at their mommies and daddies when told to clean their rooms. They don’t shoot up professors that give them a B when they should have been awarded an A. They don’t shoot Johnny for kissing Suzy at the party. It hasn’t happened. The half-million undergraduate and graduate students at the 70 universities and technical colleges allowing concealed carry on 220 campuses in Michigan, Colorado, Utah, Oregon, Virginia and Mississippi just haven’t lashed out in the ways you and Ms Hoover predict.

The last stand you have in your argument, Andy, is that Buckeyes are less responsible than even students in that school up north. They are not. Even the ones younger than 29, the age at which you threw your last documented fit, aren’t shooting each other up in the malls, city and state parks, or even large block parties and liquor serving establishments.

Don’t assume that just because you can’t behave like an adult that no one else can either.

This piece originally ran on Ohio Student for Concealed Carry’s website. You can see it at http://ohio.concealedcampus.org/2012/08/10/crybabies-favor-gun-control/

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