All Posts Tagged With: "guns"
What students are talking about today (January 18th)
1. I realize many people in my parents’ generation owned guns for hunting, but I can’t imagine more than a tiny minority of folks my age would ever buy guns. Not so in the United States. American University polled 4,266 high school and college students and found that 60 per cent plan to purchase a firearm at some point in their lives. “I think the major contribution of the poll results is to demonstrate that now is certainly the time to have a serious conversation about gun control since the next generation is no less likely to plan to own guns,” AU professor Jennifer L. Lawless told Policymic. Meanwhile, President Obama is trying to gain support for more gun control by having children read letters they wrote about guns.
2. Student journalists have been writing a lot lately about the dangers of smartphone addiction. Now, students in Edmonton are fighting back with a game called phone stacking. Julian Faid of the Grant MacEwan Students’ Association told the Edmonton Journal that it’s a shame when people are eating out and get distracted by their devices. That’s why he and his friends have followed the lead of one Reddit user. Everyone at lunch must put their phones in a stack on the table and the first one to touch his or hers before the end of their meal pays the bill.
An environmentalist argues in favour of divestment
Torrance Coste studied conservation geography at the University of Victoria before becoming a Vancouver Island Campaigner with the Wilderness Committee. He argues that universities should exit investments from companies he considers unethical, like those in fossil fuels. After reading his piece, check out Professor Todd Pettigrew’s argument that divestment is unrealistic.
While the debate around fossil fuel development and climate change intensifies in Canada, there is an effort emerging to hit the perpetrators of this global environmental disaster where it hurts—the bank account. The premise is simple: pressure post-secondary institutions to stop investing—or divest—money from companies in fossil fuel and other environmentally and socially destructive industries.
The call has been sounded through the Go Fossil Free campaign, an initiative of 350.org, a U.S.-based organization that fights climate change. Recently, a group of Canadian university graduates have petitioned Maclean’s to include an “ethical investment” category in its highly regarded annual university rankings.
Considering the link between mass killings and celebrities
We were walking down Ocean Drive in Miami Beach on Friday night and wanted to escape the loud music and even louder Happy Hour patrons crowding most of the bars, so we ducked into a little place called News Cafe. The bartender, a southern gal from North Carolina, chatted us up. It was the day of the shootings in Connecticut where 20 children and seven adults died. “Make bullets a million bucks,” she said while wiping the counters. “And stop publishing the names of the shooters.”
I had heard these arguments last time there was a “mass shooting,” as these incidents are now called. I dismissed both ideas because of the obvious impracticalities. Extreme gun control laws can’t stop a black market for guns. And besides, the suggestion that deranged people kill for notoriety always seemed far fetched. Murdering just to become famous? I never really got that.
Guns on campus, a Bar Mitzvah video, teacher’s college…
1. The University of Colorado Boulder announced it will require students who live in undergraduate residence halls to forgo bringing handguns to campus. That may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s a bold step for Boulder in light of a Colorado Supreme Court decision in March that affirmed students’ rights to handguns on campus. The rule does not apply to graduate students. Let it be noted that James Holmes, the man who killed 12 and wounded 58 others at The Dark Knight Rises in Colorado in July, was a graduate student.
2. A new $100 bank note with an Asian-looking woman peering into a microscope was deemed too controversial by a focus groups. Instead of simply rolling their eyes, the Bank of Canada purged the note in favour of a “neutral” Caucasian-looking figure. To quote from the report received by The Canadian Press: “Some believe that it presents a stereotype of Asians excelling in technology… Others feel that an Asian should not be the only ethnicity represented on the banknotes.”
3. Research In Motion is laying off so many people right now that it isn’t even bothering to meet with all of them in person. The BlackBerry maker dumped 100 workers in Halifax this week by herding them into a room and then showing them a teleconference link with someone at Waterloo, Ont. headquarters. One worker called it “inhumane,” because she couldn’t even ask questions.
No one injured
Toronto Police announced Monday that they’re investigating gunshots at York University. Police were called to 360 Assiniboine Rd. on Feb. 18 at 6:45 a.m. where a “projectile” had been shot through an apartment door. No one was injured. Police are reviewing security camera footage.
Students in a classroom at Durham College in Oshawa, Ont. found a loaded .45 calibre handgun inside a backpack left behind by a fellow student just before noon on Tuesday, say Durham Regional Police. Later in the day, 25-year-old student Dominic Chong of Sullivan Drive in Ajax was charged with several weapons offences. The gun was previously reported stolen from Toronto.
Some students say they need guns to protect themselves
A Nevada bill that would have allowed students and faculty members to carry concealed weapons on campuses has died in the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives, reports the Las Vegas Sun. The bill died when the judiciary committee decided there wasn’t enough support to bring it up in the assembly. Nevada’s current law requires individuals to get permission from their school’s presidents to carry concealed weapons, which many presidents are loathe to allow.
Nevada is just one of many U.S. states that have recently debated whether to allow guns on campus. As of February, 38 states had banned guns at schools, 11 had laws similar to Nevada’s and one state — Utah — requires universities and colleges to allow guns. In May, the Republican-dominated Texas Senate approved a bill that will legalize guns on campus there, if it’s passed by the house.
Last month in the Nevada’s Democrat-controlled senate, where the now-dead bill passed 15 to 6, students argued that guns would help them “concentrate” on their educations. University of Nevada Reno student Amanda Collins testified that she was raped in a garage on campus, but couldn’t protect herself because the current law forced her to leave her gun at home.
Gun violence has plagued American universities, but legislators are split on how best to respond. The issue was brought to to the forefront of American politics after the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007, when student Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people and injured another 15 in the biggest single incidence of gun violence in U.S. history. Canadian schools, particularly those in Montreal, have experienced deadly shootings on campus too. The Dawson College shooting in 2006 left one dead and 19 others injured. The Montreal Massacre at Ecole Polytechnique in 1989 left six women dead and three others injured.
More than half of Texas House representatives endorse controversial firearms legislation
University students in Texas could soon be allowed to carry guns to class. The legislation, which has yet to be voted on, has been endorsed by more than half of the members of the Texas House who have signed on as coauthors of the bill. Two years ago the state senate passed similar legislation, but the House failed to come onside. This time removing restrictions on carrying a concealed weapon in one of Texas’s 38 public universities is much more likely.
While Colorado gives universities the option to permit guns on campuses, only Utah has legislation that mandates concealed weapons be permitted on all state owned property, including public universities. Texas could be the second state to pass such a broad law. Twenty-three other states have rejected legislation to permit guns on campus in recent years.
Texas legislators say allowing guns on campus would give students the means to fight back against an armed attacker such as during the Virginia Tech shootings. “I don’t ever want to see repeated on a Texas college campus what happened at Virginia Tech, where some deranged, suicidal madman goes into a building and is able to pick off totally defenseless kids like sitting ducks,” state senator Jeff Wentworth says.
However some students are concerned about what bringing firearms to campus could mean. “If I was taking an exam and knew the person next to me had one, I don’t know how comfortable I would feel,” says Frankie Shulkin, a University of Texas law student. “I am in favor of guns rights and your typical conservative guy, but the classroom thing bugs me.” According to the Associated Press “University of Texas President William Powers has opposed concealed handguns on campus, saying the mix of students, guns and campus parties is too volatile.”
Students and employees would be allowed to carry licensed, concealed weapons
The Texas state senate has approved a bill allowing university students and employees to carry concealed weapons on campus, as long as they have the neccesary permits.
The controversial legislation, which passed 19-12 yesterday, would allow college students who are at least 21 years old to bring their weapons into buildings at state universities. University hospitals and athletics facilities would remain off limits, and private universities would retain the option of banning firearms.
Sen. Jeff Wentworth, the Republican state senator who introduced the bill said he did so because of the 2007 massacre at Virginia Tech, where he said victims were “picked off like sitting ducks.”
Katie Kasprzak, a recent graduate of Texas State University, testified in favor of the bill before legislative committees.
The bill, which has been widely opposed by university administrators, faces an uncertain future in the state’s house of representatives, where the bill died last week when lawmakers ran out of time.