University of Texas Professors Sue to Stop Campus Carry

University of Texas Professors Sue to Stop Campus Carry

In a last ditch effort against the new Texas campus carry law, three University of Texas at Austin professors sued the state and university on Wednesday, citing “dangerously-experimental gun policies” that they claim violate their rights.

The lawsuit comes weeks before the new state law takes effect on Aug. 1. The plaintiffs in the case, professors Jennifer Lynn Glass, Lisa Moore and Mia Carter, seek an injunction to block the law, claiming that the topics they cover in class are so emotional that it would suppress discussion if guns were present, therefore limiting other student’s First Amendment rights.

“But robust academic debate in the classroom inevitably will be dampened to some degree by the fear that it could expose other students or themselves to gun violence by the professor’s awareness that one or more students has one or more handguns hidden but at the ready if the gun owner is moved to anger and impulsive action,” the lawsuit reads.

The plaintiffs also argue that their Second Amendment rights are being infringed upon by the new law, arguing that: “[t]he Second Amendment is not a one-way street. It starts with the proposition that a ‘well-regulated militia,’ (emphasis added), is necessary to the security of a free state,” and that, “Post-Heller, the Fifth Circuit recognized that ‘gun use and gun control have been inextricably intertwined,’ and that, consequently, ‘an expectation of sensible gun safety regulation was woven into the tapestry of the [Second Amendment] guarantee.’”

The suit adds: “If the state is to force them to admit guns into their classrooms, then the officials responsible for the compulsory policy must establish that there is a substantial reason for the policy and that their regulation of the concealed carrying of handguns on college campuses is ‘well-regulated.’ Current facts indicate that they cannot do so.”

But the crux of their argument is that allowing campus carry would open up the school to students from other states who, because of Texas’ reciprocity, would also be allowed to carry a concealed handgun. This, they say, is detrimental to their safety because there is “no way of telling if even the modest number of those permitted to train are sufficiently monitored by the DPS to ensure that training in handgun use and safety is adequate or inadequate for constitutional purposes” (my emphasis added).

This just in: you must be trained to exercise your constitutional rights.

Finally, the professors argue that their Fourteenth Amendment rights will be infringed upon as well because the public university is not able to do what private institutions may still do: ban guns from their property.

The lawsuit seems to fail to take into consideration that although guns will now be allowed in classrooms they have already been legal on the campus (just not in buildings) for 20 years, without incident. And concessions were even put into the law, with schools still being allowed to designate gun-free zones. Open carry is still illegal.

The professors’ tactic seems to be to throw as many arguments at the wall as they can to see what sticks.

The group Students for Concealed Carry called the arguments “absurd.” Antonia Okafor, southwest regional director for the group, said in a statement that the claim that the law is “dangerously experimental” is “on its face, laughable.” Campus carry has been allowed on more than 100 college campuses across the country, she said.

“To put it in terms these professors should understand, the clinical trials are over, and campus carry has been shown to pose little risk to public safety,” she said.

Perhaps these professors should follow the lead of others and just step down.

You can read the entire (ridiculous) lawsuit here, and be sure to tell us what you think about the case below.

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  • How could it violate their first amendment rights? That’s in their heads, not objectively for everyone or even most people. I don’t see how this would go anywhere. Basically, they’re afraid and they expect the courts to side with unreasonable fear. It’s a fallacy.

    Anecdotal fallacy – using a personal experience or an isolated example instead of sound reasoning or compelling evidence.

    Appeal to probability – is a statement that takes something for granted because it would probably be the case (or might be the case).

    • G50AE

      It’s like 1986 all over again… as if concealed carry is somehow new. As if all these problems have actually happened in other states, which BTW they have not.

  • Deedon4

    If I come to a business that prohibits guns, I have the option to patronize a different business. If I was working at a place the prohibits guns I could find a job at a different place. These professors have the same option if they don’t like the school/state policy.

    Or they could ask their administrators to “Carve out” their specific classrooms as gun free zones since they have such “robust academic debate”. Things must have really changed since my college days. I don’t recall any topics that were so emotional. Maybe they should go back to teaching science and other topics that would really be useful in a career in a productive society.

  • Travis Peck

    Who is preventing students from bringing guns into the classroom already, if they wanted to do harm. Are they checking the students when they come in the room? No! If the new policy is in place, whoever want to bring a gun into the class to do harm will now have to deal with an unknown number of concealed law abiding citizens who could change the situation and even stop the active shooter.

    Who wants to start trouble when they know they may be out numbered and out gunned?

  • Travis Peck

    When times in the classroom are heated by discussion, what happens when their is an extremist or mentally ill person who wants to do harm and there is no one to stop him from committing horrific crimes? We do not have enough cops or security personnel to screen students before class. Also, no one screens the students for extreme activities and check their medical records for potential mental aggravation of violence before a heated debate in class. Even if you did it is not full proof.

    • And that’s the rub. Hoplophobes think that just outlawing something will make it so. The crazies and the criminal will disobey the law. It’s been proven time and time again. The only people that obey the law are the good guys, the people that could help.

      • Travis Peck

        Only if the far left individuals can meet back in the middle, they might see things through. They are so far in the clouds now, we have to remind them what reality is and soon morality.

  • Travis Peck

    If they are worried about people not being trained, make it a campus policy that you have to have A through B accomplished in order to carry on campus with a registry of who is permitted. That easy!

  • David Loeffler

    Obviously the professors and their attorney(s) are abysmally ignorant of the meaning of the words and phrasing in the Second Amendment. As pointed out in the article they are also just as ill informed of recent experience of campus carry across the country.

  • bjensen

    And just how many fist fights have broken out during their lectures? How many chairs have been throw, or people have been stabbed (by anything from key’s to pen’s to actual blades)? What about pepper spray? Are a bunch of students spraying each other when these lectures get overly emotional and heated?

    What’s that you say? No, none of this has happened….hmmm didn’t think so and LEGALLY armed students in the room won’t change that, sorry professors, but if you’re that frightened, you have one right and that is the right to go work elsewhere.

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