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  • ClemsonYAFGunRange by Nick James

    On April 19, the Clemson Young Americans for Freedom chapter will host its first ever Second Amendment Banquet and give away a free "assault" rifle.  The sad part about this event is that we can't even give the winner their prize the night of the event because firearms are banned from campus by state law.  This unfair restriction of our right to bear arms is one of the reasons our club decided to host this event.

    The idea for this event all started with a discussion at a chapter meeting.  After months of planning, our big idea is finally coming to fruition.  Our main motivation in putting this event together has been the recent talk of gun registration, which aims to limit our Second Amendment rights.  The amendment states: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."  The framers of our great nation took great care in how they worded our founding documents.  With this in mind, I focus on the final portion of the text "…the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."  In my opinion, it doesn't get clearer than that: the right to own and use weapons should not be infringed

    But what is our government doing today? 

    The current powers in Washington are trying to take away our "assault style rifles," put limits on our magazine capacity, and increase the cost and difficulty of owning a weapon.

    Recent attempts at legislation have focused on a few, key issues. First, there has been a strong push to outlaw menacing-looking rifles, which gun control proponents falsely label as "assault weapons." These guns are no different than any other firearm. Sure they look a little more menacing and can be designed for tactical use, but I just can't fathom why this would make them illegal to own?  Students on our campus have already made comments along the lines of "Opposing an assault weapons ban is one thing, but giving one away is totally different." 

    ClemsonYAFGunBootsSecond, the federal government also wants to limit our magazine capacity, this way when a group of criminals breaks into our homes, we have less ammunition with which to defend ourselves.  For this reason, my club has decided we will include a 25-round magazine with our gun, not the standard 10-round magazine.

    Finally, some of the politicians in Washington want to put up more red tape before you can purchase a gun.  Again I quote, "…the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed", these acts are clearly unconstitutional.  Every extra background check and registration process the gun owner must go through further increases the cost of ownership.  Americans have a right to enjoy the benefits of gun ownership, whether it be hunting, sport shooting, or simply ensuring the safety of their homes and family.

    Next week our banquet will bring awareness to the importance of the Second Amendment and help make people aware of the current movements against it.  The two key points I hope to call attention to are as follows: the Constitution directly protects our right to own weapons, and the officials in Washington shouldn't attempt to take that right away.  Secondly, no matter what laws you pass, the criminals are always going to have whatever kind of weapon they want, by definition, they disregard laws.  Don't strip good Americans of their right to bear arms and make our homes and families easy targets for those with no respect for the law.

    Nick James is the chairman of Clemson University's Young Americans for Freedom chapter

    • Readers' Comments

    • I WORK at Clemson, and the idea of putting a weapon such as this in the hands of student is not a political statement, it is creating an unsafe atmosphere at place where I - and many others - spend a great deal of time. This is beyond stupid. Just to prove a point? Let me take you up to Virginia Tech on day and show you the monuments, you malignant, pea brained dumbasses.
      Posted by Robert McCrary on 04/14/2013
    • The "wild west" mentality that fosters this kind of thinking has no place on a campus devoted to learning. President Barker, please intervene to persuade these students to do something more constructive with their time.
      Posted by John Witmer on 04/14/2013
    • Thank you for supporting our rights! its great to see things like this going on.
      Posted by Aaron Smith on 04/14/2013
    • The only thing that guns on campus would do is allow one individual to intimidate another, such as "I expect an A this semester." Clemson is a "seminary of higher learning;" we are focused here on intellectual development, not the development of marksmanship. President Barker should put an end to this ridiculousness: "NO GUNS ON CLEMSON'S CAMPUS!"
      Posted by Theodore Taylor on 04/14/2013
    • Though the Lefts' reasons for implementing gun control measures can be infuriatingly nannyish, the principle is sound. You are not as invincible as you think, with a gun, and criminals will only get more patient when selecting their opportunity to attack you. Creating a government that we're not going to be afraid of should be our mission.
      Posted by Bradley Yates on 04/14/2013
    • Good choice of dates, Clemson Chapter of Young Americans for Freedom. April 19th is the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing. It's also the day before Adolph Hitler's birthday. Enjoy the banquet.
      Posted by Mike Coggeshall on 04/14/2013
    • It's interesting that those who want guns in everyone's hands focus only on the last part of the Second Amendment: "... I focus on the final portion of the text '…the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.'" Somehow, the phrase "A well regulated Militia" completely escapes their attention.
      Posted by Meredith Walker on 04/14/2013
    • I don't have very strong opinions on gun rights, but I am very much upset that 1) a student organization had the lack of foresight to understand just how unwise it is to give an assault rifle to a random, untrained student, 2) that our university has the lack of foresight to approve this, and 3) that our discussion of gun rights has led to giving out guns as if they are candy. They're not. Whether you think that "guns kill" or not, I think we can all agree that giving a gun away on a university campus is a big "f*** you" to the genuine concerns of everybody involved in this debate. Bloody incredible. Unacceptable.
      Posted by John Christopher on 04/14/2013
    • Yeah, this is a pretty appalling thing that you guys are planning. While admittedly right leaning, our campus has always seemed to be a place that encourages civil dialogue. The giving away of any weapon to any student (regardless of that weapon's appearance) seems to detract substantially from this dialogue. Rather, it comes across as more of an attempt at ideological fear mongering. I'm personally all for revising the second amendment so that it encourages and empowers militias as opposed to individuals. If you want to show intelligent support for the second amendment why not give away a voucher for a gun safety/certification class? I think you'll find limited support for this event on campus. Even your quote "Opposing an assault weapons ban is one thing, but giving one away is totally different," which you attribute to nameless students shows a general unease among the student body regarding your efforts. Please temper the ideology and try for some civil discourse.
      Posted by Matthew Kofoed on 04/14/2013
    • I don't have very strong opinions on gun rights, but I am very much upset that 1) a student organization had the lack of foresight to understand just how unwise it is to give an assault rifle to a random, untrained student, 2) that our university has the lack of foresight to approve this, and 3) that our discussion of gun rights has led to giving out guns as if they are candy. They're not. Whether you think that "guns kill" or not, I think we can all agree that giving a gun away on a university campus is a big "f*** you" to the genuine concerns of everybody involved in this debate. Bloody incredible. Unacceptable.
      Posted by John Christopher on 04/14/2013
    • Such VICTIMS!!! How terrible for you that you can't give away an assault rifle with a 25-round magazine on campus!!! History shows that people bearing arms are always the victims (yah, right)!!!
      Posted by William Haller on 04/14/2013
    • Posted by Meredith Walker on 04/14/2013 Somehow, the phrase "A well regulated Militia" completely escapes their attention. Umm Meredith Walker, Thats all fine and great, But "A well regulated Militia DOES NOT MEAN GOVERNMENT REGULATION.....What does "well regulated" mean? In District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), the U.S. Supreme Court stated that the adjective 'well-regulated' implies nothing more than the imposition of proper discipline and training. The supreme court and 2nd A scholors disagree with you....
      Posted by Aaron Smith on 04/14/2013
    • Posted by Meredith Walker on 04/14/2013 Somehow, the phrase "A well regulated Militia" completely escapes their attention. Umm Meredith Walker, Thats all fine and great, But "A well regulated Militia DOES NOT MEAN GOVERNMENT REGULATION.....What does "well regulated" mean? In District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), the U.S. Supreme Court stated that the adjective 'well-regulated' implies nothing more than the imposition of proper discipline and training. The supreme court and 2nd A scholors disagree with you....
      Posted by Aaron Smith on 04/14/2013
    • @Aaron: Heller decided that guns can and should have regulation per Scalia. Have you read the decision?
      Posted by Joanne Hafter on 04/15/2013
    • "It's interesting that those who want guns in everyone's hands focus only on the last part of the Second Amendment: "... I focus on the final portion of the text '…the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.'" Somehow, the phrase "A well regulated Militia" completely escapes their attention. Posted by Meredith Walker on 04/14/2013" Wow you are a smart lady. Considering at that time "well regulated" meant "well supplied" and with a common caliber. And "Militia" meant neighbors and civilians who worked together to defend their land and property.
      Posted by Jason on 04/15/2013
    • Mrs Hafter, Yes I read it, it also says gun in common use, which the gun in question is is legal to own. No one is saying there shouldn't be regulations like background checks. We need to get to the true root of the issue as to why people are commiting crimes like Newtown. Like mental health. Not infringing on what the supreme courts have upheld many times over
      Posted by Aaron Smith on 04/15/2013
    • As a mother and a nurse I am appalled at the insanity of this move. How many people have to be killed? The is sad....
      Posted by teresa moore on 04/15/2013
    • I'm curious. What lesson do you hope to teach with this stunt? Will you be running a background check on the winner? Can you bear responsibility for what might happen when YOU put this gun out into the hands of just anyone?
      Posted by Jenny on 04/15/2013
    • I'm curious. What lesson do you hope to teach with this stunt? Will you be running a background check on the winner? Can you bear responsibility for what might happen when YOU put this gun out into the hands of just anyone?
      Posted by Jenny on 04/15/2013
    • I am a former sport shooter. When I was much younger I enjoyed target shooting and was involved with the NRA. Having said that, I must now say that I am appalled by what your students at Clemson are doing. Your youth have clearly not understood the full meaning of the 2nd amendment. Your students quote the first part of the amendment, but have no real understanding of what a 'well regulated' militia entails. They should spend time thinking about what that phrase might mean. Does it refer to the National Guard? Does it refer to a group of survivalists? Are they planning to become a member of a well regulated militia? Are they presently members of a well regulated militia? Was Adam Lanza a member of a well regulated militia? I suggest a professor give these youngsters additional tutorials on the history of the Constitution as well as Civics and Public Health. These young people are likely to have children one day. I hope and pray that we have better gun laws in the future so that their children may be better protected from senseless gun violence. Seeing them makes me feel great shame for America's youth. Fortunately I know there are many more American college students with more sense than these Clemson students.
      Posted by Cornelia Swenson on 04/15/2013
    • Okay! I do hope everyone remember Last Saturday's attempted armed robbery on williamston road. I work late nights on campus and I certainly don't want to be shot down.
      Posted by pavan on 04/15/2013
    • I've seen the flyers around campus, and I will tell you. I WILL BE THERE! I grew up shooting, my grandfather was a police officer and he instilled the proper use of guns since I was a young child. It has been a passion of mine for many years, and I am excited that this issue will be addressed on a college campus. To those of you who are opposing this and saying how stupid it is to give an "assault rifle" to college students, obviously don't know what an assault rifle actually is. The rifle they will be giving away is a Mossberg 715t. This is nothing more than your average .22 LR in fancy dress. It is in the casing of an AR-15, which is NOT an assault rifle, it is the civilian, semi-automatic, version of the M4 assault rifle. While many of you think that AR stands for assault rifle, it actually stands for ArmaLite Rifle. This was the original brand's name, and they then sold the patents to Colt and others have made versions. Do your research people. If you read what the article says about the banquet, you will know that the student will not be able to receive the rifle the day of, and will not be allowed to have it on campus.
      Posted by Will Thornhill on 04/15/2013
    • Nick James, keep up the good work! It is so refreshing to see young Americans standing up against the Liberal world we live in. I look forward to supporting you throughout your fight against Clemson, because obviously they truly don't care about the freedom of this country and guns truly are not the problem. Im response to the "guy" who tried to relate this event to the Virginia Tech shooting, GROW UP! Honestly you could pull that card out anytime and it would be irrelevant in almost every case. I love this country that has lost its common sense...Let's change this nation and turn the tide on this Liberal country and world! Stand Strong Clemson YAF!
      Posted by Sam Hill on 04/15/2013
    • From the photos embedded in this drivel, it looks like this group is all white, all upper middle class, and all completely out of touch with the real world. Free speech is a right I cherish, therefore, this young man can write what he wants, and blogs are legal. However, this type of publicity is bad for a university trying to connect with a national, and international, population. A university has every right to limit access to arms, much like public K-12 institutions prohibit weapons of any kind on campus. These young people have every right to bear arms (and show their arse), but they don't have a right to bear them on campus. I can't imagine any situation where students and faculty bearing arms would help further the university's mission. Finally, you might ask the colleagues, widows, and orphans of the slain University of Alabama-Huntsville biology faculty members if they wish there were more guns on the UA-H campus in 2010.
      Posted by Ryan Reardon on 04/15/2013
    • The banquet is to inform people of their 2nd Amendment rights and to encourage gun safety! Will Thornhill did his research and is correct. Mr. Ryan, like many liberals has to mention race?!?
      Posted by L Todd on 04/16/2013
    • Would you explain the gun registration that you are concerned about?
      Posted by Meg on 04/16/2013
    • Would you explain the gun registration that you are concerned about?
      Posted by Meg on 04/17/2013
    • To James McCrary: 1. It's worse than counterproductive to call people names because they disagree with you. It doesn't convince them; it apparently exists to show the world just what a great guy you are that you feel strongly enough to call these students names. Since it won't convince them, I can only conclude that doing so is merely self-serving. 2. Do you think that the use of such language makes this country more or less polarized? 3. Do you seriously mean to suggest that this raffle makes the campus less safe? There is a prohibition against guns on campus. Do you mean to suggest because one student now has one (more?) gun, the campus to which no one is allowed to bring guns is statistically less safe than it was before the raffle? If tomorrow I purchase a gun, take it to my home, and secure it there for purposes of self defense, is my town now statistically less safe than it was yesterday? If an intruder knows that I may well have a gun in my home for defense, is my house less secure than it was enforce I purchased the gun? To Ryan Reardon: good point about Huntsville (though, since you bring race into the matter, may I bring ideology into it and point out that that shooter would hardly be comfortable at a YAF meeting). Would you agree that the students at Pearl River HS in Mississippi are glad that the Asst Principal had a .45 semiautomatic in his truck, which allowed him to confront and detain the shooter before he could kill more than two?
      Posted by Stephen on 04/17/2013
    • Stephen, Actually yes, if you were to purchase a gun tomorrow, return home and secure it, you would statistically be less safe in your home. This is especially true if you have more than four. And I can't see how anyone would take your argument against using polarizing language seriously when you're supporting an event to give a controversial weapon to a University student for the sake of making a political point. Finally, I have no reason to think that the shooter at UAH would have felt uncomfortable in a YAF meeting. She could have been a faculty sponsor. She, like this organization, seems to have not understood the connection between people shooting guns and gun crime.
      Posted by Dylan on 04/18/2013
    • Stephen, Actually yes, if you were to purchase a gun tomorrow, return home and secure it, you would statistically be less safe in your home. This is especially true if you have more than four. And I can't see how anyone would take your argument against using polarizing language seriously when you're supporting an event to give a controversial weapon to a University student for the sake of making a political point. Finally, I have no reason to think that the shooter at UAH would have felt uncomfortable in a YAF meeting. She could have been a faculty sponsor. She, like this organization, seems to have not understood the connection between people shooting guns and gun crime.
      Posted by Dylan on 04/18/2013
    • The banquet is open to the public, not just students. May I remind you, that there will also be some policemen at the banquet to share gun safety information. Some of you have direful opinions/expectations of Clemson students! I am disappointed. Also, Amy Bishop used a 9mm pistol, which can easily be concealed, at UAH.
      Posted by L Todd on 04/18/2013
    • Clemson U does not allow guns on campus - including events. They've already publicly stated that the winner will not receive the weapon on the night of the banquet. Most of you commenting on this article are idiots.
      Posted by Justin on 04/18/2013
    • Clemson U does not allow guns on campus - including events. They've already publicly stated that the winner will not receive the weapon on the night of the banquet. Most of you commenting on this article are idiots.
      Posted by Justin on 04/18/2013
    • Clemson U does not allow guns on campus - including events. They've already publicly stated that the winner will not receive the weapon on the night of the banquet. Most of you commenting on this article are idiots.
      Posted by Justin on 04/18/2013
    • As a Clemson Alum ('06), I am very proud of the students at YAF. It gives me hope that there are still enough conservatives coming out of college that we may still survive as a country. In Will Thornill's comments he makes excellent points. The "assault" weapon in question is not an assault weapon. It's nothing more than a 'scary' looking .22. If any of you "enlightened" bloggers would have noticed, "Assault" was emphasized in the title of the page to prove just how ridiculous the argument is; kind of tongue and cheek if you will. Will those citing the 2nd amendment tell me anywhere in the Bill of Rights where it is inferred that these are not individual rights? If you had ever studied the constitution during your indoctrination and actually read any of the books on our Founding Fathers, you would have realized that EVERY right listed in the Bill of Rights, including the 2nd amendment, is meant to be an individual right and it is those individuals that formed the militia. Of course I doubt you would have ever studied this if you studied something like anthropology ‘Doc’. Unfortunately I just found out about the banquet and will not be able to attend tonight, but know that there are several alums that have your back. Keep up the good work and good luck educating the "enlightened" folk.
      Posted by Shawn Pauley on 04/19/2013
    • Your logic is flawed, and it brigns into question your ability to properly use research methods. The absence of a person with a gun to stop the Westroads shooter cannot logically be used as evidence that guns can help stop such violent attacks. Unless you can prove that a person was kept from bringing in a gun to Westroads, your hypothesis is mere speculation. Again, the absence of a fact (a person with a gun could have stopped the shooter)cannot be used to make a leap in logic that had something taken place, i.e., a person with a gun could have stopped the shooter, the shooting would not have taken place. In simpler terms, the fact that guns are banned from Westroads is no evidence whatsoever that if guns were allowed in Westroads, the shooting would have been any less likely whatsoever. Your logic is flawed, presumably because to support your thesis, you need to make such unsupported leaps in logic that are pure nonsense. More guns are bad. Less guns are good. In this case, security should have had guns, and they should have had the courage to stop someone who they saw with a huge bulge in his jacket, which they admit to have seen prior to the shooting. And I also see no reason why it took dispatchers two minutes to call out an officer after getting the 9-11 call for the shooting. That seems like a very very slow dispatch time.
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