First and foremost, before I begin, I think it’s very important that you know this..
I am writing this article in a local Starbucks with my Apple laptop that bares a “I love Guns and Coffee” sticker on the front where the apple logo should be. All while sipping on Dunkin Donuts coffee in protest, of course, of Starbuck’s anti-gun policies and culture.
Now that we have that settled, let me proceed to the ridiculousness that is, from a more macro level, the Professors against campus carry outrage. Specifically, one Meredith Clark, Associate Professor at the University of North Texas and author of the recently published, “I’m a Black Female College Professor in Texas. Should I Get a Gun?” with our “unbiased” friends at The Trace.
(SIDE NOTE: Assoc Prof Clark teaches such courses as Introduction to Media Writing and Comparative International Media Systems, which makes this article all the more delicious to serve up to you)
As a campus carry activist, law school bound graduate student and oh yes, black female, I find Professor Clark’s arguments against her student’s right to own a firearm and meddle with the outlandish concept of, “self defense” particularly condescending. Not for me, although I do deplore when someone uses the platform of race as a means to shut down debate or in this case, logic over feelings, but rather for the students reading her piece.
In fact, I cringe every time professors, like the ones at Gun Free UT, California professor “Myrtle Lynn Payne”, Professor Clark and many others, make the case that campus carry will limit their right to free speech and it will do so because their students simply cannot handle controversial conversations, topics of study or one’s simple “blackness” without itching for the opportunity to handle things with their gun. I find it ironic that the same Leftist professors that prohibit speech that deem “hate speech” or dangerous topics as exempt from the first amendment, have been the ones at the forefront of using that very argument against campus carry.
First of all, being in school as long as I have and plan to be for the foreseeable future, if a university gets the faintest wiff that a student may be deranged in this way, more often than not, that said student would be in mandatory counseling or on temporary leave faster than a “Black Lives Matter” protester can rush a stage during a Milo Yiannopoulos speaking event.
Second, in all honesty, I have to ask you: What are you doing in this profession? I am not saying all students are trustworthy, not all people are trustworthy, and therefore not all students. But it is patronizing, exhausting and fundamentally wrong to constantly be in fear of those whom you enlisted to teach each and every day.
When I teach, I do not go into the classroom with an immediate fear of which student will eventually harm me. If I had those thoughts, it would be equally logical for me to fear for my life whenever I encountered anyone in public in my great home state of Texas. Because concealed carry has been a reality with no concerns for the past two decades, you can see how illogical that fear would be not only for me, but anyone to have.
If you do not have a basic trust of your students, I would look deeper into the fact that the potential and desire to look at the best in your students is hindered by an irrational fear. Because the facts are clear. Those students that you are so afraid of, they are law-abiding citizens and licensed permit holders. They believe in their human right to self-defense so much that they have invested time and hundreds of dollars in permit applications, firearms purchases, concealed carry gear, training costs and range fees. Many going above and beyond the mandated training required by law.
They are upstanding citizens (See: shameless plug ) and they are 1/7 less likely than the general public to commit a violent crime.
I’ll end this piece by addressing Professor Clark directly. (mostly because the Starbuck’s employee eyeing me the last hour seems finally brave enough to come up and ask me, “Um..just what is your deal?!”)
Meredith Clark, the last few paragraphs of your piece visualizes a situation where you felt threatened by a student who was more than likely just high on drugs. You allude to the fact that you may have been trigger happy and have shot her in self defense.
Regardless of the absurd notion that if you were allowed a gun in your office (AKA: safe space), you may have shot her, imagine if you will that same young student walking to her car late at night. A man or woman hell bent on harming her, physically or sexually, follows her down the poorly lit street to her dorm room. She reaches into her purse or rather carries a firearm on her person and successfully wards off her attacker by being armed, trained, and in no way, shape or form ‘trigger happy’ until a clear and present danger is upon her.
Would you make the same case for her that you made for yourself?