There’s plenty of debate on both sides of the issue, but having a concealed weapon on campus is an issue that the University of Nevada, Reno faculty have voted overwhelmingly against. It prompted one faculty member, who felt his view was not adequately considered by the faculty as a whole, nor respected, to reach out to ThisisReno.
The faculty member asked to remain anonymous for this interview.
Faculty Member: I was concerned after the holidays with all of the activity of ISIS that we could have a shooter on campus, and no one is prepared for it. I’m a CCW carrier, and I can carry a weapon just about everywhere I want to in the state except where I work on campus. The reason I can’t carry on campus is because the president of the University disapproves.
ThisisReno: You don’t have University authorization to carry on campus?
FM: The idea that one man can take away my CCW abilities is distasteful.
TIR: Do you keep your gun in your car?
FM: I sometimes keep it in my car, and I always park off campus for that reason. Sometimes I have a weapon; sometimes I don’t.
TIR: What’s the University’s stance on it overall?
FW: Historically, it’s been no CCW carry on campus for as long as I’ve been there. It’s been quite anti-gun on campus.
TIR: I suppose the logic is that it would then encourage a gun culture on campus.
FM: I think that may be a bit far-flung. If someone were to begin walking through the hallways with an AK-47 shooting students, staff and faculty, which would you rather have happen? Would you rather call 911 and wait for the police to show up and figure out what’s going on, or would you rather me step out into the hall and drop the guy? I don’t think I could go to sleep at night if I didn’t do something. Hiding in your office may be something that the president of the University can live with himself with, but I can’t do that. If all I have at my disposal is a pair of scissors, I’m going to do something. They’re making it more difficult for me to do something because of their stance on weaponry.
TIR: How many students and faculty are allowed to carry on campus, that you are aware of?
FM: I’m not aware of any. There may be some, but my guess is you can probably count them on one hand.
TIR: Are there any exemptions for faculty?
FW: I’m not tempted to apply for an exemption. I consider that it would probably be a waste of my time.
TIR: What’s the overall faculty stance?
FW: I would guess that if you were to poll the faculty, the overall faculty’s stance would mirror the faculty senate’s stance, which has always been against conceal and carry on campus.
TIR: Would you like to see a clearer exemption process? What changes would you like to see different?
FW: I would like to see the power be taken away from the president of the University. If I want to conceal and carry on campus, I should be able to conceal and carry on campus.
It’s been reported that at Nevada campuses, “over the past two years, Nevada colleges received a total of 19 applications for concealed weapon permits, mainly at the University of Nevada, Reno. Five were approved.”
Another faculty member, who testified recently in front of the Nevada Legislature, said that her request — after a threatening encounter with a student — to carry on campus in accordance with her CCW permit, was denied by the UNR president’s office.