A three-judge panel on the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals sent professors from the University of Texas at Austin packing on Friday when they upheld a 2015 “campus carry” law that allows licensed individuals to conceal carry guns on campus.
The three professor’s lawsuit ridiculously claimed the presence of guns on campus would have a “chilling effect” in the classroom and impede their First Amendment right to free speech.
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.
The panel also unanimously rejected the professor’s additional claims that the law was in violation of the Second and Fourteenth Amendments.
In addition to the free speech claim, the professors had also lobbed a Second Amendment complaint, that the campus carry law was unconstitutional because guns on campus were not “well regulated”; and a Fourteenth Amendment complaint, that the professors were denied equal protection under the laws because there was no “rational basis” for where guns were allowed — on public campuses but not most private schools, for example.
The professor’s attorney stated they don’t plan to file another appeal. Smart.