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Old August 2, 2016, 05:43 PM   #1
Bartholomew Roberts
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University of Texas Professors Sue to Block Campus Carry

Lawsuit: https://static.texastribune.org/medi.../complaint.pdf

Calling this lawsuit a "longshot" is putting it mildly; but I'm sure the lawyers appreciate the cash.

Here is the state's reply brief:
https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov...on_-_FILED.pdf

The interesting part of this is why the antis chose this particular hill to die on. They know they are going to lose. So I'm curious how much PR value they think they'll get out of this to make it worth the effort?
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Old August 2, 2016, 07:10 PM   #2
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Anti gunners are big on "making a statement", because it's for the children. At least it's not taxpayer money being wasted on this suit (I hope).

The state's reply to the suit is priceless.
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Old August 2, 2016, 07:24 PM   #3
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Ah yes, what is now THE American way. Anytime something is disagreeable sue, sue, sue.
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Old August 2, 2016, 08:23 PM   #4
Bartholomew Roberts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natman
At least it's not taxpayer money being wasted on this suit (I hope).
I'm interested in how that is being funded myself. It doesn't appear to be funded directly by the state; but I'm not sure how much (if any) the professor plaintiffs are paying.

The professors are all social science types - work & family/labor social sciences (the Barbara Bush funded chair no less), feminism/LGBT literature (this is the ringleader), and English. The lawyers are right out of central casting as well: Planned Parenthood board member, immigration lawyer, and of course, Ann Richard's former Solicitor General.

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; August 2, 2016 at 08:44 PM.
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Old August 2, 2016, 08:39 PM   #5
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Now if we could sue professors for bad or false education ...
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Old August 3, 2016, 07:45 AM   #6
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After reading the complaint and the answer, an odd thought crossed my mind.

While I suspect that these three professors are firmly anti-gun, could it be possible that this entire lawsuit is a vehicle whereby they are also trying to get the 5th circuit to rule that Academic Freedom is an individual right, as opposed to an institutional right?

I wonder, because of the inordinate amount of paper the defense spent on this issue, in light of the fact that the CAA5 has not definitively ruled on this issue.

Maybe I'm just being paranoid.

p.s. I was delighted to read that the Texas AG called out the en banc panel in Peruta as being flat out wrong. lol
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Old August 3, 2016, 07:48 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bartholomew Roberts
. . . . The interesting part of this is why the antis chose this particular hill to die on. They know they are going to lose. So I'm curious how much PR value they think they'll get out of this to make it worth the effort?
I can't help but wonder if it's really about PR, or if it's really about trying to make sure they (anti gunners) get to the appellate level. More ways and reasons to appeal if you lose at the trial court level.
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Old August 3, 2016, 08:04 AM   #8
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Plaintiff's lawyers are (1) either not getting paid; or (2) getting paid by the mountains of IP money that resides in Austin these days.
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Old August 3, 2016, 09:51 AM   #9
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When Hicks defended the City of Austin's campaign finance ordinance, it was reported he charged $350/hr with a $55,000 retainer to defend a city law supported by local Democrats. And that is just for Hicks.

This lawsuit will definitely go the appellate level, so this is not chump change to pursue against the state. I'm finding it difficult to believe the three professors reached into their own pockets to fund this. Naturally, none of the reporters looking into this story asked anything about that.

Al, I had the same thought when I saw all the ink addressed to the idea of academic freedom and that it was an issue of first impression in the Fifth Circuit. Although it seems to me the most likely outcome would be to create bad precedent for the notion of academic freedom in this circuit. If you were trying to broaden that, this seems to be absolutely the wrong case for it - and the Fifth Circuit appears skeptical of the idea anyway.

Also disappointing to see that three professors and three lawyers can't even diagram a sentence based on their legal arguments, let alone understand Justice Scalia's point about a prefatory clause.
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Old August 4, 2016, 10:28 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Bartholomew Roberts
Also disappointing to see that three professors and three lawyers can't even diagram a sentence based on their legal arguments, let alone understand Justice Scalia's point about a prefatory clause.
Oh, I think they understand the prefatory clause quite well. The one thing I've noticed is that overall, this one small point (well regulated militia), has taken on a life of its own.

You would think that after the thrashing Scalia gave it, it would be a dead issue. Not so! As a screed, it has risen to heights that we have not heretofore seen. As this lawsuit points out, CC license holders are not well trained enough. Who would have thought that the anti's would take that phrase and by correctly using it, find a vehicle to curtail the right?

While this lawsuit may not gain much, if any traction with the courts, look to see this idea being pushed more and more.
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Old August 4, 2016, 01:15 PM   #11
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Actually, I've already seen the idea pop up in another contemporary piece of "scholarship" in which a gender studies professor examined the amendment in order who to determine who "the people" were (spoiler alert: she reaches the conclusion they were only propertied white men and the Second Amendment is just patriarchal, racial oppression).

I don't remember the author. I wonder if it is the Lisa Moore who is the plaintiff here? I think you are right though that you are going to see future emphasis on "well-regulated" being applied to the people rather than the militia - both in its proper context of being "well trained or disciplined" and in the more modern but ahistorical context of "legislated to death."
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Old August 4, 2016, 02:07 PM   #12
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Not to belabor the point, but there have been several pod-casts on this subject since 2012.

Kyle Kulinski of Secular Talk and Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks have already made a big deal about the idea that civilians aren't well regulated enough. Like it or not, these progressives have the ear of many millennials.

On the other side of the coin, conservative Ben Shapiro has somewhat warmed to the idea, even though he remains a staunch supporter of 2A rights.

And now we see it in at least one court case.
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Old August 4, 2016, 02:51 PM   #13
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Of course many people are not well trained in the use of arms. That's why we have a whole subforum for that topic here.

A lot of people are not well enough informed to vote smartly. But, we recognized that government controlled test systems get abused, so we don't let government stop people from voting without passing a test.
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Old August 4, 2016, 03:25 PM   #14
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(spoiler alert: she reaches the conclusion they were only propertied white men and the Second Amendment is just patriarchal, racial oppression).
I have received this basic conclusion from anti gun people many times. They often nearly go into anaphylaxis when I tell them, then direct them to proof, that historically many gun control laws were a primary means to disenfranchise and subjugate racial minorities.
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Old August 4, 2016, 07:34 PM   #15
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Which is the exact point this author was relentlessly hammering on; but never actually got around to saying. She listed off a well-researched pre-Constitution historical basis to establish "historical norms" that would have been the underlying assumptions the founders used; but then she completely missed the irony that practically every pre-Constitution example of gun control she could muster was used to disenfranchise and disempower the very same audiences she claims to support.
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Old August 6, 2016, 02:46 PM   #16
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Well, apparently the University of Texas sent a 5-yr out of law school attorney to represent them at the hearing. Five years out of law school vs. 40 years and a former Solicitor General. Almost like UT wanted to lose. Fortunately, the state Attorney General's office was also there.

http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/201...us-carry-suit/

Looks like the UT attorney may have created an argument the chl policy UT developed is unconstitutionally vague though.
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Old August 6, 2016, 09:36 PM   #17
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There are time like this that I am ashamed to admit that I am an alumnus of the University of Texas. Perhaps I should change my username to Cougar1990 as I did earn my MBA at the University of Houston in 1990.
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Old August 7, 2016, 10:36 AM   #18
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It is certainly interesting to note that when UT was recently defending its admissions preferences, it wasn't sending out 5yr lawyers to handle the defense. Instead, it had a very competent, practiced litigation team.
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Old August 10, 2016, 10:11 AM   #19
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UT Professors now arguing campus carry law is too vague and there is nothing specific preventing them from banning CHL in their classrooms:
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/polit...awyer-says.ece



Good thing UT's lawyer isn't actively sabotaging the case for the defendants.
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Old August 10, 2016, 05:09 PM   #20
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But is there any specific UT rule allowing the professors to punish students who carry in the classrooms in which those professors have banned firearms?
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Old August 10, 2016, 06:17 PM   #21
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Professors aren't allowed to ban students from carrying in the classroom under either UT policy or the campus carry law. That is why the professors are suing.

UT's attorney first argued that there was no impact on the professors' academic freedom because UT didn't have any policy to punish professors who flouted it - ergo the professors didn't face any harm. That led to an awkward line of questioning in which the university policy appeared very vague.

All of this despite the fact that the state attorney general's office absolutely shredded the plaintiffs' brief and laid out a solid point by point rebuttal to it. If the UT attorney had done no more than say "Uh huh - what he said" he'd have made a better argument than what he ultimately made.

And then after creating an issue out of thin air, it was left to the state attorney general's office to address that issue as well. To say UT is complicit in trying to sabotage its own defense against its professors understates the case I think. I hope the legislature remembers this come 2017.
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Old August 10, 2016, 07:57 PM   #22
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Quote:
It is certainly interesting to note that when UT was recently defending its admissions preferences, it wasn't sending out 5yr lawyers to handle the defense. Instead, it had a very competent, practiced litigation team.
In defense of the University I think most would agree the admission process is a part of their core mission and conceal carry regulations are not. There were probably quite a few ticked they had to spend any money whatsoever on it irrespective of their personal stance on the issue.

Five years isn't Five days. Seems he just wasn't prepared.
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Old August 10, 2016, 09:07 PM   #23
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UT has about 45 attorneys just on their in-house permanent staff. In the General Counsel office, they've got multiple attorneys with decades of experience. The attorneys for the plaintffs here have 30-40 years of practicing law each. One is a former Solicitor General for the state of Texas.

With all of those resources to tap, how did an attorney with five years experience end up driving that bus? And how is it the attorney decided to branch off from the state Attorney General's office argument and create an issue where none existed? I'm a bit skeptical UT sent him out the door with a "Go get him, tiger!" and no discussion of his brief or legal arguments. And if they did is that actually better?
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Old August 10, 2016, 09:42 PM   #24
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BR noted
Quote:
And how is it the attorney decided to branch off from the state Attorney General's office argument and create an issue where none existed? I'm a bit skeptical UT sent him out the door with a "Go get him, tiger!" and no discussion of his brief or legal arguments. And if they did is that actually better?
Maybe... UT doesn't want them to win, but is obligated to appear to do something to appease certain elements there.
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