Dr. Rad: Don’t Allow Campus Concealed Carry

Much ado has been made about an effort to broaden Georgia’s concealed carry rules during the current legislative session. Galloway notes this morning that the effort to get something passed may not be as smooth as some had hoped.

Meanwhile, Democratic Senate candidate Dr. Branko Radulovacki (yes, there are Democratic Senate candidates not named Michelle Nunn) weighs in on the debate. Dr. Rad is a psychiatrist, so perhaps his opinion on the issue should be respected.

As a psychiatrist, I am relieved that the expanded concealed carry bill known as SB101 appears to be dead. Before legislators in the Georgia House rush to replace it with a new bill, let’s separate fact from fiction. Supporters of concealed weapons on college campuses claim armed adolescents will be better able to defend themselves against crime. Statistics suggest a more sobering outcome. Odds are, the vast majority of guns fired on campuses will be suicides. And when the shooting stops, our state legislators’ claim to good intentions won’t matter.

SB101 was pitched as a ‘right to safety bill,’ but its proponents didn’t do their homework. Before a substitute bill is hurried through a rushed legislative session, I’ll do the homework for them. We live in a society that often portrays those with mental illness as violent – and the epidemic of gun violence as the inevitable result. That’s inaccurate. Only 5% of violent incidents are caused by those with mental disorders. That means those with mental illness are much more likely to be victims than perpetrators.

In 2010 (the most recent year for which such data is available), 6 out of 10 gun deaths were suicides. The same year, 1100 suicides occurred on college campuses and approximately half involved a gun. Those statistics should be on our minds when we consider tossing guns into the college campus mix with adolescents, drugs and alcohol, loneliness, depression, very little structure, and limited supervision.

Georgia’s legislators need to listen: When we can foresee that more lives are likely to be lost than saved by the increased presence of guns, it’s time to lay down the weapons and put safety first.


    • saltycracker says:

      But we can’t have a no restrictions position or entertain a crazy, no guns except police position then the outlaws will be the public with the guns. The line is somewhere….find it.

  1. tmoore912 says:

    Students 21 or older, with a Georgia Weapons Carry License, have been keeping their guns in their vehicles while on campus since the passage of SB 308 in 2010. Where is the data/crime reports showing those GWCL holders returning to their vehicles, getting their guns, and then committing violence and/or suicide while on campuses across Georgia? It’s not to hard to just go get it out of the car.

  2. Michael Silver says:

    More DISHONESTY from the allies of the Board of Regents.

    The AJC and Insider Advantage polls use the deceptive term “students” to describe who will be able to carry on campus as if none of them needed to qualify for a license. This time Dr. Rad uses a term suggesting teenager : adolescent.

    The only people who we are talking about are licensees. If the poll question was “do you support allowing background checked licensed Georgians older than 21 year to carry on campus” you will see the number go to 70% in agreement. The pollsters and Regents know it.

    My personal story illustrates how stupid the Board of Regent’s position is. I went back to school to get an MBA in my late 20’s. I could carry all over Georgia in stores, homes, restaurants, etc. For some reason, once my feet hit the campus grass at Emory I become a danger to society and a potential mass-murderer. That is the insulting opinion of the University System, the Board of Regents, and their allies.

    I’m hoping the Legislature recognizes the dishonesty that the Board of Regents and their allies are doing.

      • Michael Silver says:

        Why would insurance rates go up? The risk of an Active Killer event decreases and there is less crime.

        Did insurance rates go up when we decriminalized carrying in restaurants that serve alcohol in 2008? I remember that being one of the many claims at the time but I don’t believe it happened.

        The demographics and law-following nature of the Licensees is many times better than the general public.

        • John Konop says:


          Reality is as I posted below rates went up over 13 mm in Arizona when a similar law passed. Georgia has more colleges and students than Arizona, and with inflation this could be about 20mm. Bottom line who should pay?

          • mountainpass says:

            John I read the article you posted below but it has ZERO to do with insurance. The 13m was to install lockers and man metal detectors that was allowed(not demanded) by the law that passed.
            The bill here, at least the one last year didn’t mention either of those, nor do I see that happening as that was discussed several years ago for a bill dealing with government buildings and deemed to be to costly.

  3. jiminga says:

    The good doctor has chosen his facts carefully: “In 2010 (the most recent year for which such data is available), 6 out of 10 gun deaths were suicides. The same year, 1100 suicides occurred on college campuses and approximately half involved a gun.” Of course he doesn’t tell us how many of those guns were legally possessed by legal CCW holders. Since almost all college campuses ban weapons we might guess all were unauthorized and illegal. He also fails to point out that one must be 21 to get a GA Weapons Carry License, thereby excluding the majority of students from eligibility.

    My father used to say: “Figures never lie, but liars always figure”. It’s still true today.

  4. John Konop says:

    Dr Rad,

    Your statement is very miss leading about people with server mental illness. First, you disregarded the severity of what happens with mentally ill people and incidents. You should not compare one shooting with a mentally ill person that shoots many people as equal incidents. Also, sadly the attempted suicide is somewhere between 20 to 40 times higher than general population. It was very wrong for you to down play this issue in my opinion.

    I understand, how schools from a liability stand point may not want guns on the campus. But you seem very loose with facts regarding this issue……

    Finally, I do think if we allow this that we should have different rules based on age and training.

    ………Among people diagnosed with schizophrenia, an estimated 20% to 40% attempt suicide. From 5% to 13% actually complete the act of suicide. Compared to the general population, people with schizophrenia have a more than eight-fold increased risk of suicide. They also have an increased risk of death from natural causes such as respiratory diseases…….


    BTW this is the liability issue:

    Guns on campus bill could cost Arizona universities $13.3 million


  5. seenbetrdayz says:

    No one ever looks at states that have already legalized it. Utah, Colorado. It’s always the worst-case-scenario with anti-gunners but these states have less incidents involving guns, than states which supposedly don’t allow guns on campus (excepting the illegal guns, of course, because if someone really wants to get a gun onto a campus, a few words on paper voted on by politicians is not going to stop them).

    I’m particularly watching Colorado, since they just legalized weed and they have allowed guns on campus. Technically Colorado should be in a state of unrelenting chaos right now.

  6. cheapseats says:

    Anybody who wants students to carry guns on campus has never been in a college classroom with over 100 students and also been “out on the town” with these same kids. They can’t even keep track of their shoes or their iPhones. When guns are allowed on campus, we’re going to find a lot of guns laying on the ground in parking lots, left on the hoods or roofs of their cars, left in bathrooms at bars, etc. Any bad guy with half a brain will be able to get free guns all over town.

    Kids are kids. We call them that because they don’t act like adults.

    • Harry says:

      Again, one has to be 21 and invest time and money in order to acquire a carry permit. The main beneficiaries of campus carry are the teachers and staff.

    • seenbetrdayz says:

      Not every college is UGA. The average age of my college classmates was about 30 years old. You have a lot of non-traditional aged students on campus these days.

  7. Doctor Strangelove says:

    It’s so refreshing to see Senate candidate Dr. Rad discussing state issues while running for Senate. I know as a Senator he will have much influence on Georgia Legislative issues like gun control and expanding Medicaid.

    -End Sarcasm-

    • Doctor Strangelove says:

      Note 2:

      Did you know that, before internet, people had positions on issues too? Because Dr. Rad apparently thinks that, just because Michelle Nunn doesn’t have a website full of her opinions on issues, she is therefore without opinions.

      Fun fact- just listen to her speak, because she talks about issues. It’s how people did it before the interwebz.

  8. Noway says:

    If you all really want to carry any dang where you like…almost, get licensed as a PI. Now, you gotta find a licensed agency who’ll sign you up as one of his investigators, you gotta pass the firearms test and you’re in like flint!

    • Michael Silver says:

      If you are a government employee, you can carry everywhere without a background check, training or a license (16-11-130).

      • Noway says:

        Michael, you’re meaning a gov’t law enforcement officer, right? I mean any Joe Schmoe gov’t employee cannot carry a firearm.

        • Michael Silver says:

          The exemption isn’t limited to trained LEOs. There are judges, prosecutors, court clerks on the list that don’t have any training, and are exempt without the same background checks or payment of fees like the rest of us serfs.

          I find the exemption list abhorrent and unjustified. How can we be equal in the eyes of the law if some of us are above it.

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