A University of Utah teaching assistant has been removed from her classroom after attempting to segregate her students based on whether or not they carry a concealed weapon.
At the start of the semester, the unidentified graduate student issued a “weapons policy” in her syllabus which condemned any students who brought their gun to class.
The policy stated that any gun-carrying students would have to stand in the back of the classroom together inside a “3×3 taped square on the floor.”
Campus Reform reported the instructor called the taped square “the Second Amendment zone” and suggested any students who brought a concealed-carry gun to class was exhibiting “absurd, antisocial, and frightening behavior.”
The teaching assistant also explained her belief that because the University of Utah has restricted “free speech zones,” her classroom would have the same, but for Second Amendment rights.
“Concealed carry is protected under your Second Amendment rights,” she wrote. “However, because the University of Utah reserves the right to restrict elements of the First Amendment on campus to specifically sanctioned ‘free speech zones’ I am reserving the right to restrict elements of the Second Amendment in my own classroom.
“If you feel that it is somehow at all appropriate to bring a gun to class (hint: it is not — this is absurd, antisocial, and frightening behavior), you are restricted to spending your time in class in my ‘second amendment zone’ a 3×3 taped square on the floor in the very back of the classroom, that will be shared with all other gun carriers,” she added.
The instructor went on to accuse concealed carry gun owners of disrespecting her and their fellow classmates’ “personal and psychological safety,” and explained she would be denying them a desk in light of their disrespect.
“This zone also does not include a desk, because desks are reserved for students who respect the personal and psychological safety of their classmates and instructor,” she wrote.
According to the Salt Lake Tribune, two students sent the syllabus to state Rep. Karianne Lisonbee, R-Clearfield on Monday.
Lisonbee posted the syllabus to her Facebook page with a clear message.
“I am livid,” she wrote. “A University of Utah professor doesn’t understand the Bill of Rights and university policy on free speech — which is disturbing enough. But even more egregious, she is seeking to break state law and deprive students of their rights.”
The university released a statement Tuesday, just one day after classes began, stating that the graduate assistant has been reassigned for violating state law and university policy on concealed carry, which has been allowed since 2006 on campus.
According to The Washington Times, university spokesman Chris Nelson said the “made-up” policy was immediately removed from the online curriculum and students were made aware of the error.
Lisonbee later took to Facebook with an update, explaining that the graduate student issued an apology to students and that she will be receiving more training on school policies.
“I have been assured that this teacher has been reprimanded for publishing a syllabus against University policy. She was asked and has issued an apology to her students,” she wrote.
“Her syllabus has been retracted by the University and they are committed to making sure that she receives proper training. Thank you to the University and to the brave students who raised this issue. The price of liberty is constant vigilance.”
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