Quantcast

Appeals court hears challenge to Texas campus carry law - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Appeals court hears challenge to Texas campus carry law

(Ralph Barrera/Austin American-Statesman via AP, File). FILE - In this Oct. 1, 2015, file photo, protesters gather on the West Mall of the University of Texas campus, in Austin, to oppose a new state law that expands the rights of concealed handgun lic... (Ralph Barrera/Austin American-Statesman via AP, File). FILE - In this Oct. 1, 2015, file photo, protesters gather on the West Mall of the University of Texas campus, in Austin, to oppose a new state law that expands the rights of concealed handgun lic...

By KEVIN McGILL
Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Attorneys for three University of Texas professors asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to revive their challenge of a law allowing people with concealed-handgun licenses to carry weapons on public university campuses.

Two of the professors, Lisa Moore and Mia Carter, were on the front row as a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans heard the arguments.

Last year, a federal judge in Texas dismissed the suit. U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel said Moore, Carter and Jennifer Glass offered "no concrete evidence" to substantiate concerns that having armed students in their classroom would have a "chilling effect" on the free exchange of ideas.

Yeakel said that, because they failed to clearly show they were harmed by the law, they had no legal standing to pursue the suit.

Jason LaFond, arguing for the Texas Solicitor General's Office, said Yeakel's ruling should stand. He argued that the subjective fear of a student bringing a gun to the classroom doesn't give them standing to challenge the law, he said.

"Lots of people fear flying," LaFond told the panel. "That doesn't mean it's reasonable to think that a plane is going to crash."

Renea Hicks, arguing for the professors, said they should have the freedom to control their classroom. And, he said, the law denies the professors the right to take steps against a very real danger. He mentioned campus shootings in Texas, Florida and Virginia Tech.

"We're not asking for government protection. We're asking for self-protection," Hicks said. "The government won't let them protect themselves" by banning guns from their classrooms.

He also said national studies and the views of national professional organizations, including the American Association of University Professors, attest to the harm guns in a classroom can do to academic freedom.

Judges Carolyn Dineen King, Leslie Southwick and James Ho heard the arguments. Ho appeared skeptical of Hicks' arguments, questioning whether the law could be challenged because fear of guns might squelch free speech at a public park.

King was nominated to the appeals court by President Jimmy Carter, Southwick by President George W. Bush and Ho by President Donald Trump.

There was no indication when the appellate judges would rule.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • NationalMore>>

  • Hawaii town hopes lava tourism will bring economic relief

    Hawaii town hopes lava tourism will bring economic relief

    Thursday, July 19 2018 1:20 AM EDT2018-07-19 05:20:43 GMT
    Thursday, July 19 2018 8:46 PM EDT2018-07-20 00:46:22 GMT
    (AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy, File). FILE - This Sept. 8, 2014 file photo shows downtown Pahoa, Hawaii. The small, rural town of Pahoa is the gateway to the eruption pouring rivers of lava out of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano. Historic wooden buildings lining it...(AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy, File). FILE - This Sept. 8, 2014 file photo shows downtown Pahoa, Hawaii. The small, rural town of Pahoa is the gateway to the eruption pouring rivers of lava out of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano. Historic wooden buildings lining it...
    Authorities in Hawaii want to set up a site where the public can view lava erupting from Kilauea volcano.More >>
    Authorities in Hawaii want to set up a site where the public can view lava erupting from Kilauea volcano.More >>
  • Zuckerberg's Holocaust comment puts Facebook on the spot

    Zuckerberg's Holocaust comment puts Facebook on the spot

    Wednesday, July 18 2018 6:08 PM EDT2018-07-18 22:08:46 GMT
    Thursday, July 19 2018 8:46 PM EDT2018-07-20 00:46:15 GMT
    Mark Zuckerberg says he doesn't believe Holocaust denial content should be banned from Facebook. (Source: CNN)Mark Zuckerberg says he doesn't believe Holocaust denial content should be banned from Facebook. (Source: CNN)

    Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says that while he finds Holocaust denial "deeply offensive," he doesn't believe that such content should be banned from Facebook.

    More >>

    Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says that while he finds Holocaust denial "deeply offensive," he doesn't believe that such content should be banned from Facebook.

    More >>
  • Big move for Big Bird: Sesame Street is entering classrooms

    Big move for Big Bird: Sesame Street is entering classrooms

    Thursday, July 19 2018 8:15 PM EDT2018-07-20 00:15:47 GMT
    Thursday, July 19 2018 8:45 PM EDT2018-07-20 00:45:52 GMT
    (AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File). FILE - In this Feb. 10, 2010, file photo, characters from Sesame Street Live appear on the street by Madison Square Garden to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the live touring stage shows based on the PBS television ser...(AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File). FILE - In this Feb. 10, 2010, file photo, characters from Sesame Street Live appear on the street by Madison Square Garden to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the live touring stage shows based on the PBS television ser...
    The Sesame Street company is taking its beloved, critically acclaimed brand of educational television into the highly profitable world of classroom curriculum.More >>
    The Sesame Street company is taking its beloved, critically acclaimed brand of educational television into the highly profitable world of classroom curriculum.More >>
Powered by Frankly