A few years back, in the wake of Parkland, students from across the nation got up and walked out of class. In many places, these were done with the full support and approval of the faculty. In others, they were merely tolerated.
That’s because students and student groups enjoy the freedom of speech, even on a school campus. They have a right to say what they wish.
Will that cause a problem for one University after they banned a student group’s pro-gun signs?
Creighton University, a private college in Nebraska, told a conservative student group they could not use a pro-gun sign at a recruiting event this November, according to emails obtained exclusively by the Daily Caller.
The sign in question featured an image of an AR-15 and the slogan “print guns, not money” and was worn around the neck of a regional director for the conservative student group Young Americans for Liberty (YAL). The Biden administration has made extensive use of quantitative easing to increase the money supply while also moving to restrict 3D-printed firearms.
JP Kirby, Director of Student Rights at Young Americans for Liberty, told the Caller that the poster was meant to convey that, “the Second Amendment is absolute, people should be able to defend themselves and we’re opposed to the Federal Reserve.”
“They swooped in within 20 minutes and kicked us out,” said Anton Mirzayants, deputy regional director at YAL, who was on campus when the confrontation occurred. “Engagement was going well with the students, I was getting sign-ups there, the student body wasn’t particularly hostile at all, it was just some kind of issue the administrators had,” he told the Caller.
The university defended itself by saying that it objected to the image of the AR-15; that it won’t allow any image of a gun to be used.
Now, Creighton University is a private university, so the rules are a bit different there than at a public college.
Mirzayants said he just wanted to call out the school’s double standard. He says that the university has repeatedly denied YAL the ability to recruit on campus.
And, to be fair, I agree that a private college has the right to reject certain forms of speech on its property. It’s no different than if I eject someone from my home for calling me vile names for supporting the Second Amendment.
However, there are differences.
First, just because they can do something doesn’t mean they should. If the university wants to admit that it heavily restricts speech, then be open about that so potential students know what to expect, but that’s a bad idea. Any university, private or public, thrives best on a free exchange of ideas, both about guns and other subjects. Restricting that speech restricts the ability of the college to fully explore issues and ideas.
Further, objecting to the image of a firearm is something that is both common on school grounds and particularly stupid.
No one has ever been hurt with a picture of a gun, except maybe they got a paper cut.
No one has ever been robbed with a picture of a gun.
No one has ever been raped and picture-point.
None of that has ever happened, because the picture of a gun isn’t a weapon.
But even if it were, guns in the hands of good people don’t represent a threat except to bad people looking to do bad things. Guns in the hands of those bad people aren’t going to vanish because you don’t like a piece of paper with a gun on it.
Creighton University can take issue with how a student group markets itself all they want, but it’ll never purge reality of the fact that guns aren’t the problem.