Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Texas' Gun ExPerryment on College Campuses

The Texas legislature moved two gun bills forward.  One allows concealed weapons in buildings on college campuses, while the other gives licensed carriers the right to carry their gun in their car at their workplace.

While Texas enjoys gun loving Governor Rick Perry, most college administrators find "campus carry" a terrible idea:

In Oklahoma, all 25 public college and university presidents declared their opposition to a concealed carry proposal.

University of Texas President William Powers has opposed concealed handguns on campus, saying the mix of students, guns and campus parties is too volatile.
What about Texas Tech or Angelo State University?  Did they take a position and share it with Senator Duncan or Rep. Drew Darby?

Silence.  One might take a hint from Texas Tech's student government.

However, the official position remains a secret: 

Joseph Rallo, ASU's president, declined to offer his personal position on the issue at this point, noting that it was an "evolving process."

"Every campus in Texas is basically asking the same question, and that is 'What is the student perspective?'"
Dr. Rallo is the President of a 6,000 student university.  It's much more than a personal position.  At least his Campus Police Chief is on record (multiple times) declaring the law a bad idea.

A majority of ASU students opposed the law.  However, the first poll wasn't enough, given a response rate of 11%.  Funny, 7% of voting age Texans amended the state constitution to ban gay marriages.

Concealed carry is now the subject of an ASU on-campus debate, after which a second poll will be taken.  That one will be sent to Rep. Darby.

Meanwhile, others took a stand:

The Texas Association of Community Colleges opposes the measure.
Eventually Dr. Rallo and Rep. Darby will take a stand.  How many polls will the ASU student body take to get the answer they wish to forward?  The bill may pass before they officially weigh in.

Update 4-9-11:  In the third poll on the issue, 67.4 percent of ASU students chose to not allow concealed handguns on campus.