This past June, Texas legislation passed laws allowing students to carry concealed handguns on college campuses, according to a USA Today article. The students of University of Texas at Austin, however, decided to take a stand.
Their protest? More than 4,200 people plan to carry around dildos on the first day of the fall 2016 semester.
University of Texas has an obscenity policy that states: “No person or organization will distribute or display on the campus any writing or visual image, or engage in any public performance, that is obscene … as defined in Texas Penal Code, Section 43.21 or successor provisions.”
The students feel that if one can carry a deadly weapon onto campus then they should be allowed to carry a dildo.
Plattsburgh State education major Aimee Pomerantz said the University of Texas shouldn’t allow an open carry policy around campus because of all the shootings that have occurred nationwide.
“Contrary to popular belief I agree with it,” Elementary social education major Megan Kanofsky said, “I think that if you have the proper training and a permit you have the right to carry.”
Kanofsky said she wasn’t so sure of the laws but said people should have to go through background checks to ensure they are in proper standing to carry a concealed weapon.
“If you have the correct training and go through the proper sanctions, you have the right to protect yourself and other Americans,” Kanofsky said.
However, Kanofsky said, if a limit is put on gun or weapon control, people who want to commit these crimes will still commit them regardless of the rules.
“After all the school shootings, that’s ridiculous,” psychology major Ruby Lainez said.
Lainez said shootings are an overall issue not just in schools but movie theaters and other places as well. When having guns available, she said there’s less ways to prevent these things from happening.
Nutrition major Kaitlin Hunt said it has pros and cons.
She said it could allow people to normalize the idea of having guns by desensitizing someone when coming in contact with a gun. She also said that it could make someone less aware of someone carrying a weapon.
Hunt said that, with this law, people could go into disguise to do these horrible acts, making it difficult to know if someone had a gun on them.
“If this law was passed 20 years ago, people would think it’s normal,” Hunt said.
She said the law could allow someone to protect people from an active shooter.
“They’re not going to do it just because there are guns on campus,” Hunt said. “If they want to go and shoot people, they’re going to do it regardless if guns are legal or not.”
As for the protestors, Kanofsky said, “Go ahead. Devil’s advocate, they have every right to protest the idea of having a concealed weapon on college campus.”
Even though she didn’t agree with the protest Kanofsky said it’s a good stance to have.
“Carrying around dildos shows that they feel strongly against it,” Kanofsky said. “People will protest anything nowadays.”
Lainez said the protest is “definitely different, but I think it’s good because more people are going to hear about it. It’ll open up a nationwide discussion to stop it.”
However, Hunt was skeptical about the protest. She said she thought a lot of people would not go through with the protest because of fear of getting in trouble.
“My first thought is how many people would actually do it,” Hunt said.
Pomerantz said the protest was a good idea for the students because “if they don’t do anything, nothing will change.”
“A gun can kill someone, but a dildo can’t,” Pomerantz said.
Email Patrick Willisch at firstname.lastname@example.org