Supporters of Senate Bill 11, also known as campus carry, gathered Friday in front of the UT Tower to stage a counter-protest to last week’s “Cocks not Glocks” event. While the attendance was low, the rally was met with opposition by vocal anti-gun activists.
The event, “Glocks not Cocks,” began with five campus carry supporters gathering around a black and white flag with the phrase “come and take it” beneath the image of a sniper rifle. They were later met by representatives from Betsy Riot, a gun protest group whose members refer to themselves as “Betsies.” A woman who identified herself as “Betsy Boobs,” a UT alumna, frequently shouted over
campus carry advocates as they attempted to answer questions from the press and passersby.
The rally was organized on Facebook by UT alumna Haeli Mouré and Joanna Rodriguez, a representative from Turning Point USA, a nonprofit aimed at educating students on conservative ideals. Mouré said she organized this event because of the lack of conservative voices heard on campus.
“As a former student here, I was kind of upset that [the Cocks not Glocks event was] how the whole University is being displayed,” Mouré said.
The event involved the organizers discussing how guns can provide women with a means of self-defense, as well as proper handgun safety procedures.
“Campus carry means that I can take night classes and feel more comfortable,” Rodriguez said.
Mouré also voiced a desire for women to be able to secure their own physical safety without the aid of police.
“There’s a lot of officers on campus,” Mouré said. “I would just prefer not to wait if an incident came up.”
A small group of police officers was also present at the event. Terry McMahan, UTPD assistant chief of police, said there was no need for extraordinary security measures.
“Like we would any protest, [we’re] just looking to make sure everyone’s safe,” McMahon said.
As Rodriguez began to discuss crime statistics, “Betsy Boobs” told her to save her arguments for Facebook. Rodriguez said a more hands-on approach would be a better way to educate students on Campus Carry.
“You can’t educate people on Facebook,” Rodriguez said.
“Betsy Boobs” responded to Rodriguez’s comments with profranities at the National Rifle Association and other pro-gun organizations.
“So much for a civil conversation,” Mouré said in response.