Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund and the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America today released a new television ad that will air across the state this week as part of the group’s efforts to oppose guns on campus, “Texas is Better Than This”. The ad highlights recent polling that shows large majorities of Texans oppose allowing guns on campus and at college sporting events, including majorities of self-identified Republicans, Independents, and gun owners.
The ad urges Texans to contact their legislators and speak out against gun-lobby backed legislation in the Senate and House – SB 11 and HB 937 – that would force public universities to allow students, faculty, staff, and visitors to carry concealed handguns on public college campuses, including in classrooms, dorms, on-campus fraternities, and at sporting events. The Senate passed SB 11 in March and the House version, HB 937, is currently with the House Calendars Committee. Texas Moms have joined campus shooting survivors, law enforcement, university professors, students and other advocates to testify in opposition to these bills in both the House and Senate.
“My students and my colleagues should never have to deal with the prospect of their instructor or fellow classmate packing, especially not in the close quarters of a dorm room, the heated emotions of a sporting event, or the often sensitive space of a classroom,” said Sandy Chasse, university language instructor and volunteer with the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action. “The ad shows that forcing guns onto our campus is not what Texans want – Texas is better than this and it’s time for our Texas lawmakers to listen to their constituents, respect the wishes of universities, and stop playing politics with the safety of our students. The gun lobby and our spineless lawmakers’ push to force colleges to allow guns on campus against their will is dangerous and misguided.”
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON GUNS ON CAMPUS IN TEXAS:
The two bills the gun lobby is pushing, SB 11 and HB 937, would force public universities to allow students, faculty, staff, and visitors to carry concealed handguns on public college campuses. Note: private colleges are exempt from this mandate.
The Chancellor of the University of Texas System Admiral Bill McRaven wrote a letter to legislators stating that allowing concealed weapons to be carried on college and university campuses would create “less-safe” environments.
The Houston Chronicle reported last month that implementing campus carry could cost the University of Texas System more than $39 million over six years. Julie Penne, a spokeswoman for M.D. Anderson, told the Chronicle that the costs “would be covered out of proceeds from patient revenue, which would normally go toward cancer research, education and prevention efforts.”
A recent poll shows that a majority of Texans oppose allowing guns on campus. Among the poll’s findings:
63% think college students should not be allowed to carry concealed handguns on campus
72% think college students should not be allowed to bring concealed handguns to class
75% think people should not be allowed to carry concealed handguns at college sporting events
66% think college students should not be allowed to carry concealed handguns in student dormitories