This Irish teacher at the University of Texas is taking a serious stand against the state's gun laws
This makes a lot of sense.
Mark Sheridan, a Dublin man who now teaches at the University of Texas, has a lot to say about Texas' gun laws, which currently allow for guns to be carried on campus and could soon permit concealed weapons to be taken into the classroom.
These regulations, often referred to as 'campus carry' laws, are unsurprisingly controversial, and many lecturers and professors believe that they stifle free speech and open discussion on sensitive issues that come up in class - as well as creating an unwelcome atmosphere of tension.
In a very sensible statement on his Facebook page, the University of Texas employee made it clear why guns and learning don't go together:
"#FuckGuns because they don't belong here. This is not a shooting range, this is not a saloon. This is my classroom. It's a small, windowless space in the basement of a large campus building. Hundreds of people work and study in this building every day. I teach here twice a week.
I don't want guns here because I don't want to feel afraid that someone will accidentally shoot themselves or a classmate. I don't want to feel nervous about facilitating open, frank discussion of sensitive issues.
I don't think we can protect ourselves against random events, and active shooters are entirely random. In order to protect ourselves from something like this, we would need to carry guns everywhere and be ready to use them at a moment's notice--an idea so insane that it would be laughable if it wasn't responsible for a gun culture that kills 30,000 people a year.
If an active shooter barges in here, there is no exit, and little chance that many would survive even if we were all armed. That is because we would be caught by surprise; because we would be thinking about our work, not our phobias.
If a shooter kills us, there's no doubt about who's to blame: those who gave him the gun. If an active shooter kills people, it's a sign--not of a problem with self-defence--but of a society overly permissive of fetishistic obsession with firearms.
Gun-nuts want to erode the concept of civilian life because they can't let go of the idea that they are soldiers fighting an evil they imagine to be endemic; it makes them feel important. Most of the developed world has a meaningful distinction between military and civilian life because we realize that most humans don't want to kill other humans, and we live our lives based on this calculation of risk.
Guess what? Most of the developed world does not deal with gun violence on a daily basis. Most of the developed world is a "gun-free zone"--that's kind of how it works."
We're certainly with Mark on this one.