(Reuters) Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Christian-based Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, is encouraging students to carry concealed weapons on campus for protection, a local newspaper reported.
Falwell made his remarks at the school’s weekly convocation on Friday night, according to The News & Advance in Lynchburg. The comments came two days after a shooting in San Bernardino, California left 14 people dead and in the wake of other shooting sprees in the United States, including some on college campuses.
“It just blows my mind when I see that the president of the United States that the answer to circumstances like that is more gun control,” Falwell said, according to the newspaper. “I’ve always thought if more good people had concealed carry permits, then we could end those Muslims before they walked in.”
Later on Friday, Falwell clarified via Twitter that he was referring to Islamic terrorists, not all Muslims, the paper reported.
@anaprah that’s correct. Islamist terrorists is what I meant.
— J L Falwell (@JerryJrFalwell) December 4, 2015
Falwell, whose father Jerry Falwell Sr. was an evangelical Southern Baptist pastor, televangelist, and conservative political commentator, urged students to take free classes offered by the university’s Police Department to obtain a concealed weapon permit, the newspaper reported. “Let’s teach them a lesson if they ever show up here,” he said. Liberty University is a private institution with about 14,500 students taking courses on campus and another 95,000 enrolled online, according to the school’s website. Falwell also tweeted that he had received a wave of support for his comments. An example:
@JerryJrFalwell had a gun with him on stage today, so liberty wanted to make it easier for us to be as cool as him pic.twitter.com/oBtIZc5z5p — Julia Rothenberger (@ImJRothenberger) December 4, 2015