Missouri loosens gun laws, but not on campus

MU ASUM President Christopher Dade: “The bill should have little impact to students while they are on campus.”

Updated to reflect additional information about ASUM and Dade’s position.

Missouri residents can now carry concealed weapons without a permit after the legislature overrode Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of Senate Bill 656. The new law takes effect on Jan. 1, but universities are exempt from the bill.

The MU chapter of the Associated Students of the University of Missouri, a system-wide, student-led legislative advocacy organization, said that the concealed carry bill will not affect universities.

“The bill should have little impact to students while they are on campus as it does not [hang] where concealed carry is allowed,” MU ASUM President Christopher Dade said in an email. “From our 2016 ASUM survey, 59 percent of MU students indicated they did not support allowing concealed weapons on campus.”

Chris Cox, executive director of NRA's Institute for Legislative Action, said in a statement that it was a “great day for freedom in Missouri.”

“The legislature stood strong for the constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens by overriding Gov. Nixon's misguided veto,” Cox said in the statement.

The passing of the bill also expands Missouri’s current law, the “Castle Doctrine,” more commonly known as “Stand Your Ground,” in which Missourians can use lethal force when protecting their property or in a private residence instead of retreating. It also gets rid of the mandated training and gun education that a person would normally have to go through in order to qualify for a permit.

The vote was not unanimous, and some representatives expressed concern over the passage of the bill. Sen. Jason Holsman, D-Kansas City, said he is pro-gun, but believes it will make cities less safe.

“You can be both pro-gun and pro second amendment and still think this is a bad piece of legislation,” Holsman said, according to the Kansas City Star.

Edited by Claire Mitzel | cmitzel@themaneater.com

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