A teaching assistant at the University of Utah has been removed from the classroom after she accused gun-carrying students of engaging in “absurd, antisocial, and frightening behavior” and attempted to segregate them into a “Second Amendment Zone.”
The university said Tuesday that the unidentified instructor “will not teach this semester and will instead have other assignments” after she was found to have violated both state law and university policy regarding concealed carry, which has been allowed on campus since 2006.
The teacher had initially issued a “weapons policy” to students saying gun-carriers would be forced to stand in a “3×3 taped square” in the back of the 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,” the instructor wrote, Campus Reform reported. “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.”
Republican state Rep. Karianne Lisonbee said she received a copy of the syllabus Monday from two students in the class.
“I am livid,” she wrote in a Facebook post. “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.”
Ms. Lisonbee shared a picture with The Salt Lake Tribune from the two students that showed the “3×3 taped square” already marked off in the classroom.
University spokesman Chris Nelson said the made-up policy has since been removed from the course syllabus and students were alerted to the mistake Tuesday.
“University of Utah officials recently learned that a graduate teaching assistant included a statement in an undergraduate course syllabus that violated both state law and university policy. The statement has been removed from the syllabus and students in the class have been alerted to the error,” Mr. Nelson said.
“The graduate student instructor has apologized and has received additional training about the university’s policies,” he said.
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