By Don Dike-Anukam
Publicly known gun rights activists, Antonia Okafor and Amanda Collins-Johnson, spoke this week at the University of Nevada, Reno. Collins-Johnson was one of three victims of a spree that eventually landed James Biela in prison for life after he was convicted of raping and murdering Brianna Denison in 2009.
The pair spoke to a roomful of nearly a hundred students, community members, public officials and those interested in gun rights.
The focus of the conversation centered on campus carry, conservatism and feminism on college campuses, and other hot-button issues such as firearms and women’s rights.
Collins-Johnson raised the point that had she had her lawfully owned firearm when attacked by Biela, she could have defended herself.
“We’re here tonight to speak about the importance of campus carry ,and how it is impactful … and to raise awareness about the horrific effects of sexual assault,” she said.
Okafor stressed that they were trying to start a movement that brings female empowerment and gun ownership together, particularly on college campuses.
Many people walked away from the discussion with a new perspective. Some learned something new about campus carry — whether or not they shared similar viewpoints. The event was sponsored by campus and national conservative organizations.
UNR bans most all firearms on campus, even when those with concealed carry permits have petitioned UNR’s president for the right to carry their guns.
Don Dike-Anukam is a Reno native attending college in northern Nevada. He has been involved in activist politics for 15 years on and off, and has been involved in multiple campaigns in multiple positions in that time. He also was a college radio political, news, and talk-show host covering a range of stories from hostage standoffs, fires, interviews, and public speeches.