The Arizona Desert Lamp

Shooting north of UA campus

Posted in Campus, Politics by Evan Lisull on 16 October 2008

Until all of the facts are in, it’s hard to definitively comment on this story with any degree of certainty. However, judging from the facts, it would seem that this a classic example of self-defense with a firearm. The breaking news from the Wildcat:

The 23-year-old male student shot and killed two would-be intruders who had entered the student’s home near the intersection of Tyndall Avenue and Adams Street at 12:38 a.m. today, said Sgt. Fabian Pacheco, public information officer for the Tucson Police Department.

After the fatal shooting, the student called 911 services, which dispatched TPD officers to the scene. After questioning the student, officers took him away in a police car, witnesses said.

The fact that the TPD is already describing the shooting victims as “intruders” seems to imply that the UA student will not face any punishment for his actions.

It’s worth considering how this will play into the broader meme of “security on campus.” While the event took place off campus, and the student ended up protecting his own well-being without any help from the authorities or CCTV, this event will indubitably make students feel “less safe” on campus. Thus, it is more likely that with the imminent security surveys, people will be (irrationally) more likely to sign off on plans that may have very low marginal benefit. This raises the broader question of governance: how much should policy makers rely on polls of public opinion? While governing to the polls is treated with derisiveness on the national scale, ASUA seems to have no qualms about turning every major decision over to a survey. This represents a serious failure of governance — rather than making the tough decisions (which, in theory, they were elected to do), they are instead deferring the decision-making to the mob, and instead merely pulling the right strings in the UA bureaucracy to make things happen.

Also, I’d be surprised as hell if the Students for Concealed Carry didn’t jump right on this; which is a shame, but it’s no different than the responses from both sides to the shootings at Columbine and Virginia Tech. While that debate has died down since last spring, an event like this could ratchet things back up again.

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