“That piece of paper saying ‘gun free zone’ meant nothing to my armed attacker. No one should wait to have my story in order to be allowed to carry a firearm.” – Amanda Collins at UNR
On Thursday, October 17 at the University of Nevada, Reno, wide-eyed college and high school students, alumni, and community listened to Amanda Collins and Antonia Okafor challenge the University to take proactive approaches to campus safety by allowing students, specifically women, to have the option to carry a firearm.
Collins’ story hit home, as October 22 marks 12 years since she was raped at gunpoint in a UNR campus parking garage just feet from the campus police office. Since then, UNR has installed more lighting in the parking garage and hands out ineffective rape whistles, as demonstrated by Collins with the whistle given to her after the attack. The UNR policy that left Collins defenseless and unmatched to her attacker remains unchanged, and continues to haunt her as the University routinely turns a blind eye to the urgency of the matter.
Okafor, a sexual assault survivor and Second Amendment activist, used her time to explain how conversations within the #MeToo Movement often end at the victim. She explained that many University policies, such as the one at UNR, form walls between students, particularly female students, and their ability to effectively defend themselves, and how the radical feminist movement’s attempts to empower women often lead them to victimhood.
The stories of both speakers prompted female UNR students and alumnae to attend a self defense course at Reno Guns and Range, an event sponsored by the Center for Conservative Women as part of its Luce Society program. There, the young women learned how to handle a firearm and effectively protect themselves, a right they hope to have at UNR.