On Aug. 1, 2016, Texas is going to mark two important events.
One of them will be when the state law allowing anyone to carry a weapon onto college and university campuses takes effect.
I dislike the new law, although I am not vehemently opposed to it. The campus carry law gives me the heebie-jeebies, given the outbreak of violence that occurs on campuses throughout the country.
Now, for the next event.
Next Aug. 1 marks the 50th year since Charles Whitman climbed to the top of the Texas Tower on the University of Texas-Austin campus and opened fire with his high-powered rifle, killing 16 people before being gunned down by police.
The campus-carry law takes effect on the very same day that Texas will mark what’s been called commonly as the first such tragic incident of its kind in the nation.
Erica Greider, writing a blog for Texas Monthly, poses this thought: “This is just a comically lurid coincidence that led me to ask myself whether the Lege should lose its lawmaking privileges, and probably raises more substantive questions for many of you.”
Could the Texas Legislature have picked a more ghastly date for this law to take effect? I think not.
On a side note, one of my sisters recently expressed her dismay over the use of the term “anniversary” to remember events such as these. The term, she said, ought to be reserved for occasions that recall joy and happiness.
This date ain’t an “anniversary.”