Guns, Immigrants, and Higher Ed

Dr. Z

Things have been quiet.  It’s the summer.  Summer classes are ramping up.  Kids are coming home from college.  The rain has stopped.  So bicycling and kayaking have begun to occupy my days–to the extent that I am behind on my classroom readings.  (My students have had to correct me twice on details from Huckleberry Finn.)

During these doldrums, the Texas state legislature has been grappling with two bills that will shape the culture, the nature, of college campuses.  One deals with allowing concealed weapons on campus and the other allowing undocumented students to keep in-state tuition.

The repeal of Perry’s Dream Act, which would have ended in-state tuition for undocumented students, was not popular among conservatives. Nevertheless, they were unable to pass a measure ending the act.

Perhaps the confusion is my own.  Perhaps it is a reflection of my own political inattentiveness.  I can’t help but wonder, though, if this strange mix of legislation reflects the legislature’s own inability to understand the role of higher education and its relationship to the state’s economy.