TeeJaw Blog

Guns and Free Speech On Campus — Not?

Posted in Government and Politics, Gun Rights by TeeJaw on Thursday, July 1, 2010, 10: 19 AM

Colorado’s CCW law says that permit holders can carry anywhere in the state except as specifically provided in that statute. The statute precludes concealed carry by permit holders in only four areas: K-12 schools, government buildings that maintain secured entrances, private property where the owner prohibits, and anywhere prohibited by Federal law. Everywhere else it is legal to carry by permit holders.

So when the University of Colorado and the Colorado State University tried to prohibit permit holders from carrying they sued, and the Colorado Court of Appeals agreed with them and struck down the university prohibitions. The University of Colorado has decided to appeal to the Colorado Supreme Court. If the statute prevails, they will lose in the Supreme Court as they did in the Court of Appeals. Problem is, there are only three out of seven Justices on the Colorado Supreme Court who can be counted on to uphold the statute when it conflicts with their personal political views. The other four are more likely to look for a result that supports their vision of how the world works, or ought to work. If they are on the panel that will decide this case there will be a good chance that the University Regents will win, and the personal preferences of the Justices will amend the statute in a fait accompli.

But there is a chance they won’t be on the panel. The Chief Justice has announced her retirement in time for Governor Ritter to appoint her successor before the end of the year so she can avoid being on the ballot for judicial retention in a climate where voters are unusually interested in judicial retention in the upcoming election.

Propitiously, all four of the liberal Justices are up for retention this November, and there is a grass roots campaign to dump them. The Chief may just have seen the handwriting on the wall and decided to get out before she was thrown out, and to assure that Governor Ritter has a chance to appoint a sufficiently liberal successor in an end run around the voters. The new Justice will have to stand for retention one year after appointment, but it is no doubt hoped that voters will have forgotten about Judicial retention as an issue by then, and they are probably right. That voters are interested this year is a reflection of just how radical some of the past decisions of the Colorado Supreme Court have been. For analysis of those cases go to Clear The Bench Colorado.

With the United States Supreme Court having declared first that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to keep and bear arms, and then ruled this week that the Second Amendment is incorporated against the States by the 14th Amendment, and added to that the number of campus shootings by maniacs, it might be expected that students who are legal permit holders would be interested in protecting their right to self defense on Campus.

But not only are university administrators intent on denying the right of self defense of campus, they seem to be willing to stifle all speech on the subject as well. This video shows what is happening in a place once thought to be the center of the free exchange of ideas:

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