Armed with Dildos, UT Students Protest Campus Carry
Thousands of students at UT-Austin protested campus carry today using a tactic that could be described as unorthodox, if not unprecedented on the Forty Acres: They brandished dildos by the hundreds on the Main Mall.
The protestors had long-advertised their intent to do so en masse – a similar, smaller-scale protest took place earlier this year – to protest the law, which allows license holders to carry concealed handguns inside campus buildings and classrooms.
Yesterday, a group called “Cocks Not Glocks” distributed more than 4,500 sex toys for students to strap on to their backpacks – the idea being that the toys are illegal to carry around campus, but guns are not. The effort was launched by UT alum Jessica Jin.
“We want to force that kind of conscientiousness on people who are so ingrained in gun culture that they don’t understand the impact that they’re having on the people around them,” Jin said.
Faculty and elected officials also joined the demonstration, including some from the group Gun Free UT.
Austin Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo, whose district includes most of UT, addressed the protestors.
“You know, in allowing concealed handguns to be carried on UT campuses – on campuses throughout our state – our legislature has not made those place safer,” Tovo said. “In fact, they’ve done the opposite. They’ve endangered the lives of faculty and staff and of students who walk those halls.”
C.J. Grisham with the group Open Carry Texas held a counter protest on the street just next to UT’s Main Mall.
“After this protest, everyone’s going to go back to class. They’re going to be carrying their little rubber devices, and people just aren’t going to care,” he said. “It’s going to be another day on a college campus.”
Organizers of the protest are encouraging students to carry the dildos until the law is repealed.
While the campus carry law allows license holders to carry concealed handguns on campus, there are areas of exemption, known as “safe zones.” The UT Police Department is reminding students that they shouldn’t actually see any guns on campus since open carry is not permitted, tweeting “if you see a gun, dial 9-1-1.”
Below, you can see more photos from the protest.