Some Texas professors say guns in classes could chill debate

HOUSTON -- Some faculty members at the University of Houston say sensitive subjects may become taboo in their classrooms because of a law allowing Texas public university students to bring guns to class.

See Full Article

Jonathan Snow, president of the faculty senate at the university, told University of Houston regents that staff concerns about the law are growing, the Houston Chronicle reported Wednesday.

"Academics know the intrusion of gun culture into campus inevitably harms academic culture," Snow told the Board of Regents.

A faculty senate slideshow shown at a recent meeting featured a message that said instructors "may want to be careful discussing sensitive topics" or may choose to drop "certain topics" from their curriculum.

Under the law, which takes effect Aug. 1, licensed gun owners may carry concealed handguns on public university campuses. University officials have some discretion to designate gun-free zones, but a recent opinion from the Texas attorney general's office said no limits may be placed on students carrying guns in classrooms or dormitories.

Nevertheless, the president of the University of Texas at Austin recommended to UT System regents that guns be banned from dormitories. Private universities may still ban guns from their campuses, and none in Texas has chosen to allow armed students in classrooms.

The University of Houston Faculty Senate adopted a resolution last year that opposed the law, stating, "The diverse academic communities and free academic discourse are especially threatened by the presence of deadly weapons in teaching, research and living spaces."

Jacob Smith, who supports the law and teaches at the university while working toward a doctorate in economics, said that other states already allow guns on campus and have not seen any gun-related confrontations between students and faculty.

"It's an absolutely unfounded fear," he told the Chronicle.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Trump holding interviews for national security adviser as he tries to refocus

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday was stepping up his search for a national security adviser, with several interviews on tap, and focusing on health care in talks with his health and budget chiefs. Meanwhile, while his team pushed back against depictions of a young administration in disarray. Source
  • Social media plea brings in loads of 'Star Wars' Kraft Dinner for Autistic B.C. boy

    Canada News CTV News
    NANAIMO, B.C. -- Hundreds of boxes of a limited-edition pasta now fill the home of a family in Nanaimo, B.C., following a plea to help their autistic son. Reed Botwright put out a call on social media last week when he and his wife could not track down any more boxes of Star Wars Kraft Dinner, one of the only foods their six-year-old son Everett will eat. Source
  • RCMP intercepts 22 asylum seekers overnight in Manitoba

    Canada News CTV News
    The RCMP intercepted 22 asylum seekers overnight Saturday near the small border town of Emerson, Manitoba. In a press release, an RCMP spokesperson said that the 22 individuals crossed the border illegally overnight from Feb. Source
  • 'What has he been smoking?': Swedes scratch heads at Trump's suggestion of major incident

    World News CBC News
    Swedes have been scratching their heads and ridiculing U.S. President Donald Trump's remarks that suggested a major incident had happened in the Scandinavian country. During a rally in Florida on Saturday, Trump said "look what's happening last night in Sweden" as he alluded to past terror attacks in Europe. Source
  • More flood fears for California as another storm approaches [Photos] [Video]

    World News Toronto Sun
    SAN FRANCISCO — Residents returning to homes damaged by flooding should be prepared to evacuate again as yet another powerful Pacific storm takes aim at Northern California, officials warned Sunday. The San Joaquin River was reaching flood stage, and residents of Manteca were told to be ready to evacuate in case it hit dangerous levels. Source
  • Iran, North Korea officials: Let's strengthen relationship

    World News CTV News
    TEHRAN, Iran -- Officials from both countries say Iran and North Korea want to strengthen relations. A Sunday report by ICANA.ir, the news agency of Iran's Parliament, quotes parliament speaker Ali Larijani as saying: "We have always been after stability of relations with North Korea. Source
  • Snowblower sales surge as Maritimers dig themselves out of back-to-back storms

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Maritimers continue to dig themselves out of back-to-back snow dumps that have hit the East Coast. Some residents are still searching for their lawn ornaments after a series of storms clobbered Atlantic Canada last week. Source
  • Kenney works to consolidate lead as Alberta PC leader race enters homestretch

    Canada News CBC News
    The Alberta Progressive Conservative leadership race is in the homestretch and front-runner Jason Kenney says he's still running like he's 10 votes behind, but he's also looking past voting day. "I'm (now) on a month-long tour around the province to meet with as many elected PC delegates as I can," said Kenney in an interview. Source
  • Minneapolis woman shocked friend walked to Canada

    Canada News CBC News
    Saciido Shaie says something seemed to be weighing on her friend Mohamed Badal in the days before he vanished. Badal, a Somali man who spent months trekking four continents before landing in the United States, had been preparing to appeal a rejected asylum application when Donald Trump became president. Source
  • Vancouver hosts 2nd B.C. debate for Conservative leadership candidates

    Canada News CBC News
    The second of two back-to-back debates for Conservative leadership candidates is underway in Vancouver. Organizers say "candidates will engage in a series of one-on-one debates" as well as smaller group debates at the Vogue Theatre downtown. Source