Last week’s protest against campus carry at the University of Texas, Austin, certainly garnered some media attention and raised a few eyebrows.
The fact that a group of students decided to have a rally and then walk around campus with sex toys hanging from their backpacks to make some point or another about campus carry didn’t bother me at all. It’s a free country, and if their parents (who are paying big bucks for them to get an education) don’t care if they waste their time with such senseless shenanigans, neither do I.
What frustrated me, though, was their complete lack of knowledge about Texas’ new campus carry law—and about concealed carry in general.
Truth is, these kids, like their adult counterparts in the anti-campus carry movement, refuse to admit three very critical facts that make a mockery of their entire cause.
Let’s take a quick look.
1. Campus carry doesn’t allow any drunken 18-year-old to carry a gun to class. But that’s certainly what you’ll hear from its opponents.
“How can you trust an 18-year-old old with a gun who has just guzzled two six-packs of beer?” they’ll smugly ask. Or, “Can’t you just see what will happen when a frat party gets out of hand and some teenager with a gun is there to make matters worse?”In truth, campus carry doesn’t arm anyone, and certainly not teenagers, who can’t legally buy a handgun.
In truth, campus carry doesn’t arm anyone, and certainly not teenagers, who can’t legally buy a handgun. The Texas law simply erases the invisible boundaries that keep those over 21—who are already vetted and licensed to carry a handgun for self-defense—from carrying on campus, when they already do so elsewhere in the state. Yes, that’s right: We are talking about law-abiding adults who have already applied for and received concealed-carry licenses, and who could already carry their firearm in public when not on campus.
Here’s something else these young protesters might not know. Those licensed carry permit holders, who can now do the same thing on Texas campuses that they have doing for years virtually everywhere else, are the most law-abiding demographic of all. Who woulda thunk it!
2. Campus carry won’t stifle discussion at gunpoint. Those opposed to campus carry say it will squelch discussion in classrooms for fear of being shot. In fact, one of the young women interviewed by local media at UT said she had gone to college just to “discuss controversial topics.” (I’d like to think she went to get an education first and foremost, but whatever—it’s her parents’ money.)
Here’s the thing, though. Not one campus-carry opponent can cite a single incident, ever, anywhere, in which a licensed concealed-carry permit holder shot, or even threatened at gunpoint, a professor, student or anyone else during a classroom discussion of these apparently sacred “controversial topics.” And the sample size isn’t small—eight other states do not ban carry on campus, and about a dozen more let universities make their own rules on the topic.
In every case, a person already broke the law against guns on campus before going on to break other laws pertaining to assault, attempted murder and murder.Fact is, members of what we’ve already pointed out is the most law-abiding demographic just aren’t the kind of people who murder others because of simple classroom disagreements. Anyone who says they are is either ignorant or lying.
3. Campus gun bans only affect the law-abiding. How do these opponents of campus carry think campus shootings happen, anyway? In every case, a person already broke the law against guns on campus before going on to break other laws pertaining to assault, attempted murder and murder. Fact is, a deranged person who wants to kill a lot of people on a college campus won’t give half a thought to a law stating that guns aren’t allowed on campus. And it’s ridiculous to think that he would. If he survived such an attack, would he actually care if he had a charge of illegally carrying a firearm on campus added to multiple assault and murder charges? The answer to that is a no-brainer.
Campus gun bans force law-abiding, licensed carry permit holders to leave their guns at home, squashing not only their right to bear arms, but also their ability to defend themselves and others. Opponents of campus carry apparently couldn’t care less that they are fighting to leave law-abiding, gun-owning adults as easy prey for violent criminals, who don’t follow any laws, much less no-guns-on-campus laws. While having a ban on campus carry might make campus carry opponents somehow feel safer, it doesn’t actually make them any safer.
Taken together, these three factors render campus-carry opponents’ main arguments basically nonsensical. But hey, if they want to run around campus with a sex toy hanging from their backpacks, more power to ’em.