Come August 1, students at the University of Houston could potentially begin carrying legally concealed weapons to campus. This possibility is prompting UH faculty members to consider how and what it teaches in the classroom. After all, they would not want to do anything that might enrage a student with a gun:
With this in mind, the faculty senate is actually proposing core curriculum be altered based on the slides posted above. The Houston Chronicle reports:
A slide shown at a recent discussion of a new state law, which will allow licensed individuals to carry concealed handguns on campus, says faculty may want to "not 'go there' " to avoid creating a tense situation. This echoes concerns voiced by professors across the state that allowing guns into the classroom will limit academic freedoms and inhibit discussion of sometimes touchy subjects.
Texas public universities are hashing out how to handle the campus carry law, which gives them some leeway to carve out gun-free zones on campus -- though a recent attorney general opinion said those zones can't be classrooms or dorms. The University of Texas at Austin last week said it will ban guns from dorms, but will allow them in classrooms.
The law allows private universities to ban guns, which the state's largest and best known private schools, including Rice and Baylor, have done. No private school has chosen to allow guns.
Snow told the UH regents that the private schools' decision says something about the law: "Academics know the intrusion of gun culture into campus inevitably harms academic culture."
While concerns are legitimate, the entire reason for this debate in the first place is specifically because students and faculty members have, thus far, been sitting ducks in all past cases of mass-shooting at university campuses. The argument is that had law-abiding students or faculty members been armed, they could have defended themselves.