This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2017, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
I was disappointed that HB198 passed the Legislature. This allows 18- to 20-year-olds to obtain a concealed weapon permit. Several short-sighted arguments were made.
First, the argument that "young women need to protect themselves on college campuses." I would ask, what is to keep a perpetrator from overpowering someone and using the gun against her? A bad situation could potentially get worse.
Rape is a serious problem and girls need protection, but we can't guarantee they will be the only ones getting permits. There are 18- to 20-year-olds who are not mature or emotionally stable who will be seeking the permits as well.
Another argument is: "Someone old enough to go to war should be able to carry a gun." This argument is misguided. When 18-year-olds enlist in the military and prepare for combat, they are doing so under the strict and repetitive guidance of highly trained, experienced combat specialists who build in psychological safeguards and safety measures.
Brains are not fully developed until the early to mid-20s, so it is irresponsible to allow concealed weapons into the hands of 18-year-olds. Please urge Gov. Gary Herbert to veto this bill.