On January 16, 2002, a former student at Appalachian Law School walked into the office of the school’s dean and opened fire. His rampage ultimately took the lives of the dean, a professor, and a student. As the shots rang out, most bystanders ran for their lives, but not all.
Three students approached the shooter. One, a Marine veteran, was unarmed. The other two had raced to their personal vehicles the instant they heard shots fired and returned with their dildos.
I thought of this story while reading the fawning media coverage of Texas students protesting a new state law permitting license-holders to carry concealed firearms on campus. Students are out in force, waving . . . sex toys. The inevitable hashtag? #CocksNotGlocks.
Why wave sex toys to protest allowing students the exercise of their basic constitutional and natural right to self-defense? Because, you see, there’s a Texas law still on the books that outlaws some displays of sex toys, such as dildos and “artificial vaginas.” Here’s the Washington Post, straining to make a connection: “The sex-toy-as-symbolism protest was meant to expose the arguable hypocrisy of what is and is not safe in Texas public spaces.”
First, to the extent that anyone is actually drawing a parallel between laws regulating “cocks” and “Glocks,” they’ve lost their legal minds. Anti-obscenity laws are in the category of offenses against “public indecency.” They’re not declaring what’s “unsafe,” but rather what’s “indecent,” and their enforcement is heavily restricted by the First Amendment. There are multiple reasons why no one is prosecuting the protesters for waving their dildos — it’s protected speech, and it’s almost certainly not even unlawful under the statute they abhor.
These activists are seeking to limit to the point of near-extinction the basic constitutional and natural rights of their peers.
Second, if University of Texas protesters, teachers, and officials believe that until classes started yesterday UT was, in fact, a gun-free campus, they’ve lost their minds. Before this new law, there were two types of people who had guns on campus: criminals and the handful of law-enforcement officers scattered across a vast university. Every single other responsible, law-abiding citizen was disarmed — utterly dependent on officers who could be minutes away.
Third, UT students should understand the need for campus carry better than most. On August 1, 1966, Charles Whitman climbed to the observatory platform of the University of Texas Tower and opened fire with a rifle. While the shootings, which ultimately claimed 13 lives, were underway, armed civilians returned fire. Eyewitness accounts tell the tale:
Students with deer rifles were leaning up against telephone poles, using the pole, which is rather narrow, as their shield. And they were firing like crazy back at the Tower.
I remember thinking, “All we need is a bunch of idiots running around with rifles.” But what they did turned out to be brilliant. Once he could no longer lean over the edge and fire, he was much more limited in what he could do. He had to shoot through those drain spouts, or he had to pop up real fast and then dive down again. That’s why he did most of his damage in the first twenty minutes.
Whitman was ultimately brought down by police, but there is no way to know how many lives were saved by armed students who made him keep his head down.
Fourth, if one a person thinks that a licensed concealed-carry holder makes the UT’s campus more dangerous, they’ve lost their minds. Let’s make this concrete. Imagine you’re teaching a class, and you know that Amy, a student in the front row, has a concealed-carry permit. Sitting next to her is Roxanne, who does not. You have no idea if either one of them is actually armed. Who’s more likely to shoot the teacher? Roxanne, and it’s not even close. Who’s more likely to save your life? Amy, and it’s not even close.
Do you believe that a human being has a right to self-defense?
Do you believe that Texas was a gun-free campus before campus carry?
Who do you believe is more likely to kill you, a licensed permit-holder or person without a license?
As you know, Texas executes more killers than any other state in the nation. If the death penalty doesn’t deter a murderer, why do you think campus rules would prohibit a criminal from carrying a gun?
If you are in a classroom, and a criminal opens fire, would you rather have a dildo on your desk or a revolver in your backpack?Let’s be clear: Like campus protesters at other schools who scream for censorship, these activists are seeking to limit to the point of near-extinction the basic constitutional and natural rights of their peers. They’re brandishing sex toys and essentially screaming “oppress us” at the top of their lungs. If any action sums up the “critical thinking” of the modern campus radical, this is it.
So wave those dildos, kids. You’ve got nothing to lose but your dignity, your credibility, and the respect of the public you’re trying to persuade.
— David French is an attorney, and a staff writer at National Review.