KANSAS CITY -- Starting in July -- besides bringing their computers, books, and other school supplies to class -- students on state college and university campuses in Kansas will be allowed to also bring guns.
One associate professor at the University of Kansas has resigned because he feels the policy will harm higher education.
“I feel, and I know a lot of professors at KU, also feel that having guns in the classroom would be totally counterproductive to our mission as a teaching institution and to the goals of the university in general,” said Jacob Dorman, who submitted his resignation to the University of Kansas on May 1.
He was an associate professor of history and American Studies at KU for a decade, and felt so strongly about this that it became a decisive factor in seeking employment elsewhere.
“If you start putting more students with guns in the mix, it`s not going to improve public safety, and I can guarantee you it will degrade public education,” added Dorman.
In his resignation letter he explained why he feels allowing concealed carry in college classrooms would not ensure public safety, even though the reason for the change from the state of Kansas was to make schools safer.
“You`re creating a hostile work environment for people like myself, and many people will simply leave if it`s instituted on July 1st, and that`s why I hope that the governor and the legislature will change course,” Dorman said.
Dorman says he cares about the future of Kansas and the university, and thinks the educational system will suffer if this happens.
“It would definitely degrade the whole process of education which requires people to express their feelings freely, without fear that there`s a gun in the classroom, that an argument could easily escalate,” Dorman explained.
He says police have the proper training, and should be the ones responding to an active shooter situation, not students.
“Imagine what would happen if students with guns in their pockets pulled them out in the middle of an active shooter situation, most likely they`d start shooting each other, because nobody would know who the real shooter was,” Dorman said.
FOX 4's Melissa Stern reached out to the National Rifle Association, the Kansas State Rifle Association, and a Republican senator from rural southeast Kansas for a comment on this, but had not heard back before air time on Friday.
Kansas Republican Senator Forrest Knox shared the following statement with FOX 4 on Tuesday:
Mr. Dorman's ridiculous letter of resignation poses many false, unsubstantiated statements and proposed choices. For a professor, let alone of history and American studies, his reasoning skills and understanding of the Constitution are obviously lacking.
He states that, “concealed carry has proven to be a failure” and that “concealed carry does not deter gun violence,” yet gives no basis for this statement. On the contrary, concealed carry, which now exists in all 50 states, coincides with the rate of serious crime at an all-time low. A look at what happened in cities like Chicago when guns were banned (in the 1980’s) shows tremendous increases of crime. Statistics prove that when citizens are allowed a means of defense, crime drops. When only criminals have the guns, crime rises.
Mr. Dorman calls the argument that the 2nd Amendment simply means what it says, “a specious argument” and claims it is only a protection of a well-regulated militia, completely ignoring the words “shall not be infringed.”
He claims, and we all agree, that “guns do not belong in classrooms” yet advocates that a sign will keep them out, which we all know to be a fantasy. If you don’t want guns, you need security.
The Harvard School of Public Health conducted an extensive study of major university campuses in America and found that 6.4 percent of male students and 1.5 percent of female students report having a working firearm at college. And that was before any states allowed concealed carry on campuses. Presently 24 states allow for campus carry with nine states mandating universities to allow it, and with more states joining these ranks each year.
Does Mr. Dorman really think that all these states have “third-rate universities” and can’t recruit “world class faculty?” He is welcome to go back home to his “coastal areas and progressive college towns” where apparently, the professors bury their heads in the sand and believe that there are no guns on campus because of the signs prominently posted – Gun Free Zones - where, coincidentally, the mass shootings occur.
I’m sticking with the rational, fact-based, Constitutional view that, in the lack of real campus provided security, we can trust law-abiding citizens, even if they attend KU, to defend themselves and their peers in the event of life threatening criminal violence.
I offer Mr. Dorman a hardy, Kansas "So long!"