Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

I was about to say this is the craziest ^*(%# thing I ever heard of . . .

. . . but that's become a very high bar. On August 1, it will become the law in Texas that carrying of concealed firearms is permitted on campuses of all four-year public colleges. That includes classrooms, dining halls, you name it. So the faculty senate president at the University of Houston has been advising professors:

  • Be careful when discussing certain topics
  • Drop certain topics from your curriculum
  • Not "go there" if you sense anger
  • Limit student access [i.e. to your presence] off hours
Indeed. There have been a few instances of students murdering professors over grades and theses. James Holmes, the Aurora Colorado theater shooter, was a graduate student when he had his psychotic break, and that's the typical age for it. Young men in Texas include a whole lot of politically radical gun and violence fetishists who aren't having any truck with evolution, cosmology, climate change, or most of what I teach in public health for that matter.

It doesn't bother me a bit if Texas wants to secede.


Don Quixote said...

It will bother me if Texas DOESN'T secede. Except for Austin. And maybe San Antonio.

kathy a. said...

I can't imagine anybody wanting to go to a state U where students are allowed to pack in classrooms, dorms, dining halls, and everyplace else. Or their parents wanting to shell out for the experience of fearing shooting at any moment, PLUS having teachers shave the edges off lessons so as not to upset anybody who is armed and unhinged.

Which really raises questions for the faculty who have invested a lot in developing knowledge and skills, have competed for an elite job, only to feel unsafe in what should be a safe environment.

There is plenty of drama on college campuses without adding an OK on weapons. College-aged students are not known (collectively) for always exercising great judgment, because the frontal lobe of the brain isn't done developing yet. Add stress and competition and unfamiliar ideas, maybe some substances, maybe interpersonal friction -- things do not always go smoothly.

mojrim said...

1. You are conflating a pre-planned mass murder with concealed carry. The two have no relationship and are almost never carried out by the same people. While it is evident that mass shooters do not target "gun free zones" it is patently obvious that they are not deterred by them.

2. In Washington state the legislature pre-empts all subordinate jurisdictions and prohibits CPL holders only in K-12 schools, courthouses, and bars. All other public entities, including state universities, are required to permit CPL holders to carry in their facilities. Strangely, we haven't had any problems.