Ethan Pritchard & Yusuf Mahmood
United States

Ethan Pritchard & Yusuf Mahmood

SFL North America

CCs make headlines as they advocate for the right to self defend

CCs Ethan Pritchard and Yusuf Mahmood made headlines (again!) for their activism on the University of Maryland’s campus. This time, Ethan and Yusuf made a splash while advocating for the right to defend yourself on campus with the use of mace and knives, and eventually through concealed carry.

From the article: Two libertarian student groups hope to eventually legalize a concealed carry weapons policy on the University of Maryland campus for self-defense purposes, said sophomore economics major Yusuf Mahmood. But for now, Students for Liberty and Young Americans for Liberty are attempting to change the student code of conduct so it no longer punishes students for what the groups consider “victimless crimes,” such as owning or carrying pepper spray.

“Owning a taser, owning a can of mace, these are all victimless crimes,” said Students for Liberty President Ethan Pritchard, a senior management major. “Using it, especially if you’re the aggressor, that’s not okay. We try to divorce the idea that just because something is legal means that it’s moral to use.”

In order to gauge the student body’s opinion of what’s justifiable in self-defense, Pritchard and Mahmood, Young Americans for Liberty president, polled students Wednesday on McKeldin Mall.

Two days prior to the polling, a student at Ohio State University drove a car into pedestrians on the school’s campus and began attacking people with a knife, injuring 11 before police shot him.

The poll asked students to choose any of four options — a taser, a knife, a mace or firearm — they saw fit to use to defend themselves, Pritchard said. Some people may have only chosen firearm, Pritchard said, thinking they had to pick the most effective and/or only one of the options.

The results showed mace was the most popular with 44 votes, taser with 20 and knife and firearm both with 14 votes. Students who said people had a right to use all four weapons as self-defense were asked to sign a petition endorsing “a campus policy grounded in recognition of the right to self defense … and to make clear that policies prohibiting the peaceful and lawful carrying of weapons for self-defense creates a class of victims for criminals to target.” The petition received 26 signatures.

“For the most part, everybody that stopped to talk to us believed the self defense was a right,” Pritchard said.

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