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Fifth Circuit upholds dismissal of campus carry lawsuit

Not a surprise.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday upheld Texas’ campus carry law, delivering another clear victory to the state in a longshot, long-running lawsuit brought by University of Texas at Austin professors opposed to the law.

In July 2016, three professors claimed that a 2015 state law that allows licensed gun-owners to carry concealed weapons into most public university buildings would have a “chilling effect” on free speech in their classrooms. But a federal district judge threw out their case in July 2017, saying the professors didn’t present any “concrete evidence to substantiate their fears.”

Accepting that logic and advancing it yet further, a three-judge panel on the appeals court this week rebuffed the professors’ free speech claim as well as two other constitutional challenges they had made.

Like the lower court, the 5th Circuit panel found that the professors lacked standing to challenge the law because they had not sufficiently shown how it might harm them.

“[The professors] cannot manufacture standing by self-censoring her speech based on what she alleges to be a reasonable probability that concealed-carry license holders will intimidate professors and students in the classroom,” Judge Leslie Southwick wrote for the unanimous panel.

See here for the background. The plaintiffs’ lawyer is talking about appealing to the Supreme Court, which strikes me as unlikely to succeed, even in the alternate universe of a SCOTUS with Merrick Garland and not-Brent-Kavanaugh. Some problems have to be solved via the ballot box, and this sure seems like one of them.

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3 Comments

  1. Bill Daniels says:

    The campus carry law is so ‘chilling’ that in the three years it has been in effect, no CCW carrier at UT has shot an innocent person, and no CCW carrier at UT has brandished a weapon that was not in self defense. No CCW holder has disrupted a classroom by waving or shooting a gun in the classroom, and no student has threatened a professor with a firearm. That’s three years of no blood running in the streets or in the classrooms.

    These professors will lose at the SCOTUS, if it gets that far, and frankly, the only thing I can see this doing is helping them virtue signal at cocktail parties about how down for the cause they are.

    It’s always the same thing when it comes to CCW. “Oh, noes, the sky is falling, the streets will run red with blood, it’s the end of society as we know it.” Then we see the actual results, and the whole narrative turns out to be false.

    Way to waste the taxpayers’ money, y’all.

  2. brad says:

    Guns on campus. What could go wrong?

  3. Myrron says:

    If I remember correctly wasn’t it a ccw carrier that stopped the shooting at UT