With classes set to begin this week at the University of Texas for the 2016 Long Session, several van-loads of donated phallic protest props have arrived on campus.
The protest group, “Cocks not Glocks,” formed last fall in response to the state’s new campus carry law, which went into effect on August 1. The law allows concealed carry in certain areas on public colleges and university campuses, as long as the individuals already have a state-legal concealed carry permit, according to this guns.com story.
The group distributed hundreds of phallic sex toys so students can zip tie them to their backpacks “until guns are out of classrooms. That’ll also be the day that the free exchange of ideas that is central to universities can resume its natural flow.”
“Starting on the first day of Long Session classes on August 24, 2016, we are strapping gigantic swinging dildos to our backpacks in protest of campus carry,” stated the group on an Instagram post.
They’re also encouraging students at other Texas schools to do the same when classes resume on their campuses.
This story from khou.com says students, alumni, and spectators “eagerly snatched up more than 4,500 donated sex toys yesterday evening at the University of Texas at Austin.”
The idea is that the sex toys are preferable to the handguns that concealed carriers might have on them.
Apparently, the donated toys went at a rate of about 200 a minute. They were gone in less than a half hour.
So, is this going to be allowed by the school?
The story says the university’s obscenity policy states that “no person or organization will distribute or display on the campus any writing or visual image, or engage in any public performance, that is obscene…as defined in the Texas Penal Code, Section 43.21 or successor provisions,” However, university spokesman J.B. Bird said in an email that the sex toy distribution is protected political speech, the story says.
“UT Austin students are free to express themselves peacefully on all issues,” he said in the story. “The planned protests around campus carry appear to be examples of protected political speech. We ask that the conversations around this issue remain civil. We encourage students of all opinions to be part of this and other discussions of public policy.”
The school’s Second Amendment rights group, Students for Concealed Carry, also plans to protest today, said founder CJ Grisham in the story.
“Our goal is to support our student members and to show that UT is not unanimously against campus carry,” Grisham said in the story. “A lot of people support the right to self-defense on a college campus.”
In this post from Ammoland, Brian Bensimon, SCC director for the state of Texas, said “If carrying a phallus to class helps you express yourself, go for it. We welcome this demonstration that freedom of speech and concealed carry of handguns can coexist on the same campus.”
The SCC somewhat humorously warned students that they shouldn’t consider using the giant sex toys for anything but making a statement, or recreation, because using one as defensive weapon could classify it as a “club,” which is illegal to carry under Texas law, and is a felony to bring on a college campus.