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Brief Supports University of Michigan's Prohibition on Firearms

On March 1, 2021, the AAUP joined an amicus brief with Brady: United Against Gun Violence (formerly the Brady Center) and Team ENOUGH filed in the State of Michigan Supreme Court in support of an appeal affirming that the University of Michigan’s prohibition on firearms does not infringe on Second Amendment rights. It argues in favor of the right to impose gun-control measures on campuses to protect faculty members and students and explains how the presence of firearms could have a negative impact on academic freedom. 

The brief argues that the university’s prohibition serves the “critical interest of academic freedom by protecting faculty speech and furthering the University’s core educational goals.” The freedom to teach includes “the right of the faculty to select the materials, determine the approach to the subject, make the assignments, and assess student academic performance. . . . There is widespread concern among university faculty that allowing guns on campus would threaten this freedom and force them to alter their curriculum and important classroom discussions.” The brief also cites the 2015 joint statement opposing campus carry laws (by the AAUP, the American Federation of Teachers, the Association of American Colleges and Universities, and the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges) arguing that “students and faculty members will not feel comfortable discussing controversial subjects if they think there might be a gun in the room.”

 

Publication Date: 
Monday, March 1, 2021