On February 17 the University of Texas Student Government (SG) voted to oppose legislation Texas lawmakers are considering which would allow students with concealed carry licenses to carry a gun on campus for self-defense.
Students, faculty, and staff can currently keep guns in their cars for self-defense, but if someone attacks a classroom, a cafeteria, or other gathering area, the option of running to the car to grab the gun may be moot. For that reason, the Texas state senate is considering SB 11–a bill to legalize Campus Carry in the Lone Star State.
According to the Daily Texan, 21 of the 27 SG members voted to oppose guns on campus for self-defense. “One of the primary reasons” cited for doing so was “the overall safety of campus.”
Apparently, the twenty-one SG members never stopped to think that one of the most dangerous things a school can do is let criminals know that students, faculty, visitors, and staff are denied a means of self-defense while on the campus or premises.
We saw this at Sandy Hook Elementary (December 2012), Santa Monica College (June 2013), Sparks Middle School (October 2013), Purdue University (January 2014), and Seattle Pacific University (June 2014), among numerous other places where criminals knew “gun free zone” policies prevented their victims from fighting back.
If the SG really wanted to make their campus safer they would have considered the benefit law-abiding citizens derive from having a firearm for self-defense. Such a move would have both affirmed the value of human life and sent a message that criminals in Texas would not find easy targets going forward.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.