As they have publicized nowhere, the ASUA Senate will vote today on a resolution condemning bills in the Arizona legislature that will disallow private citizens from exercising their right to carry concealed weapons on college campuses. This is a long and storied sage with ASUA — read this site’s reports on the matter from 2009, 2010, and 2011, just as a selection.
The resolution (here as a pdf with today’s meeting agenda) is hardly different than resolutions other ASUA Senates have passed on the matter, but this round of bullets against personal property rights is noteworthy for a few reasons. The first is that the UA entertains a new president this week, Dr. Ann Weaver Hart. Dr. Hart got her start at the University of Utah, which has a very different legacy of guns on campus than the UA. Namely, they allow students and faculty to exercise their basic rights on campus. Both Presidents Sander and Shelton were vocally against guns on campus, but perhaps Dr. Hart’s consideration will be different.
Another timely point of note for this resolution is that the Wildcat reported last week that a group of students are organizing a club to support concealed carry on campus. How does ASUA determine what students deserve to have their views reflected in this resolution, and those who don’t? Other than the catch-all of “talking to students,” does ASUA have any empirical evidence as to where student stand regarding guns on campus?
Once upon a time two years ago, there was such an uproar over a Senate resolution regarding concealed carry that the body held an open forum on the subject. It was one of the most vibrant ASUA events on record — but despite the feedback from students that format provided, there are no plans to repeat that exercise. The Senate will hear the resolution as both an informational and action item at tonight’s meeting. Interested parties can go speak at the call to the audience before the meeting, which is today at 5pm in the SUMC Ventana room.
The resolution itself includes the regular weak rationale for limiting rights, including that it compromises the ability of law enforcement to do its job. At the risk of repeating myself, this from a Senate write-up almost exactly one year ago:
The discussion, of which there was not much as this site would have liked, centered around the Senate’s assertion that nearly every student they talked to like, totally already agreed with the resolution. Despite Mr. Rosinski (and my colleague’s) deft evisceration of this assumption, the Senate universally acknowledged that it was safer for students to be told they cannot exercise their basic liberties on campus. The resolution includes a specific passage regarding law enforcement, stating “ allowing concealed carry at The University of Arizona will effectively disarm campus and public safety officers by removing their strategic advantage in hostile situations.” But as our esteemed forebloggers report, dah police are rarely a help in these types of situation. This from way back in aught-six:
News sources now confirm that a 18-year-old female UA student was shot early yesterday in a drive-by shooting. Some students on Facebook had already started a group entitled “Wildcats Against Violence,” but the group lists the time as the night of the day before.
Time errors notwithstanding, it’s definitely the same party as FIJI is the same fraternity as Phi Gamma Delta. The Facebook group reports that Theta Tau and Alpha Chi Omega are also within the vicinity.
Here’s what they didn’t tell you:
FIJI, 1801 E First St, is just across the street from UAPD, 1852 E. First St. This is further evidence that citizens cannot trust police as an alternative to the right to bear arms. This is the second frat shooting this year and the third gun-related incident on university-related property to my knowledge.