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The Carletonian

Trapshooting club gets the bucks

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The CSA senate has granted $167.68 to the Carleton’s trapshooting club, which will use the money to rent guns and buy ammunition. The senate’s decision followed a debate about Carleton’s liability for injuries, as well the senate bylaws’ ban on funding personal property.

Budget committee chair Nayely Martinez ’16 and senator Abhimanyu Lele ’16 were among those who voiced concerns about gun safety. “It was unclear what the liability would be if one of them got injured,” Lele said.

After SAO director Ana Sontag clarified that members of shooting club would have to sign waivers absolving Carleton of liability, more senators added their support.

Trapshooting club leader Robert Chen ’16 reaffirmed the club’s safety, saying “we do it at a gun range, and it’s one of the safest forms of rifle sports out there.

Because you’re shooting at a clay target, there’s nothing that can bounce back at you.

“We enforce very strict safety rules, we’ve never had an accident and it’s so much fun.”

The club organizes about two trips to a local gun range per term, and only purchases enough ammunition for the specific trip. “To keep it simple,” Chen said “no guns or ammunition actually come back to campus. It’s just safety. We don’t want anything to go wrong.

“Nothing will, but in the freak chance that it could, we just want to protect ourselves and the school.”

In addition to concerns about safety, there were concerns that the ammunition constituted personal property, which CSA specifically does not fund.

“We don’t want to spend our money on things that individuals can take home or off campus,” said senator Henry Gordon ’15. He argued in favor of granting the full $168 request. “The decision in senate to increase the funding was a pretty simple one. The ammunition was never leaving the gun range and it was never coming back to campus, so it didn’t fit our conception of what personal property was,” Gordon said. Adding that “the ammunition seemed necessary for the activity itself,” Gordon emphasized that CSA “wants to support student interests.”

Originally a club devoted to general interest in firearms, the trap shooting club evolved in order create a safer and more sustainable club after the graduation of an alum who was well versed in firearm safety and training. “We took steps to make it safer and decided to switch to trap shooting,” noted Chen. “I think that it is great that Carleton is able and willing to provide an experience for people who come from backgrounds that have not been able to have experiences with firearms.”

Fully funded through spring allocation, the club will continue next year and is planning a trip to the gun range this weekend.


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