Thursday, March 5, 2009

Talking about concealed weapons is apparently not protected speech...

From The Daily Campus:

Recently, at Central Connecticut State University, a student was brought into the police station after he gave a class presentation about carrying concealed handguns on campus. What was his transgression? He dared to talk about guns in class, which made his classmates feel "scared and uncomfortable" according to his professor.

John Wahlberg was in Paula Anderson's introductory public speaking class when the students received an assignment to make a presentation about a "relevant issue in the media." Given the fierce debate about whether or not students and professors should be allowed to carry weapons on campus - ignited by the fatal shootings at Virginia Tech - Wahlberg thought that concealed carry was an appropriate topic for class. It is important to note that while Wahlberg is a gun owner and a Second Amendment advocate, he never threatened to harm anyone during his presentation.

After giving the presentation - during which he advocated for students' right to bear arms - Wahlberg went to work, where he was told that he needed to go to the police station. At the station, officers questioned him about how many guns he owned and where he kept them.

This is just absurd. A student expresses his views about the Second Amendment under his First Amendment rights and is sent to the police for questioning because of it? It is also important to note that students did not complain about Wahlberg's presentation; the only person who reported feeling uncomfortable was the professor.

The scariest thing about all of this is that Anderson claims to have acted after receiving guidance and consultation from her department chair and the dean of her department. One would hope that someone in a position of power would see the absurdity of Anderson's reaction, but clearly that was not the case at CCSU.


Hopefully, one does not have to be a Second Amendment advocate in order to feel uncomfortable about this university's response.

But, sadly, I know better.

[h/t Alphecca]

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Steve,

1) You don't know what Wahlberg actually said.
2) You don't know how he said it.
3) You don't know what his relationship was with the professor or classmates.
4) You don't know what his university relationships were.
5) You don't know his medical or psychological history.
6) You don't know how many guns he owned or if he was bringing them on campus.

My point is that there is potentially so much more to this story than is or can be publicly known that to condemn the professor for reporting this to the police with just the facts you have is pretty lame. With the historical context of mass murders at Columbine and Virginia Tech and not having all of the facts, I can't fault the professor for being extra cautious.

I am sure you can imagine circumstances where you would feel it necessary to report this type of incident to campus authorities, but the information that might inspire you to do so could not be made public (psychological history or veiled threats, for example) .

I hope that the professor was doing the right thing here. I don't think you or I have enough information to judge.

anonone

Anonymous said...

A1,
This goes directly to your stupidity. False trust and hope.

"I hope that the professor was doing the right thing here. I don't think you or I have enough information to judge."

When you offer criticism, do your homework, do not just think that you can get away with suggesting and fabricating alternatives not entered in fact.

There are many people, ready, willing and able to restrict our rights, and disarm us, and leave us in harms way, under the disguise of justice, a police force and a court system, that really does not protect us.

You are an idiot.

I am,
A responsible citizen who refuses to be a victim. Defense means being able to repel a threat.
It is not offensive behavior.

What is offensive to liberals, is that there are people, who act responsibly, take their own security and survival personally, and do not stupidly believe in reliance on a Socialistic and pandering Government that promises utopia.