Letter from a Doctor at the University of Texas

Health Science Center at San Antonio
In this letter, Dr. Escano explains how UTHSCSA has abused SB 11's "reasonable rules" clause to
designate most of the campus as "gun-free" zones.

In a follow-up email, Dr. Escano writes, "What could be so unique about a hallway or classroom to
justify banning concealed carry in those areas? For example, the Briscoe Library is excluded from
lawful carry in spite of being hundreds of yards away from any laboratories, in a standalone building
connected to the Medical School by a single corridor. This blatantly violates the provision of the law
which states that exclusion zones 'must not generally prohibit' concealed carry."
27 April, 2017

Rep. Phil S. King
Room E2.410
P.O. Box 2910
Austin, Texas 78768-2910

Dear Chairman King and Members of the Committee,

I am a licensed physician undergoing post-graduate training in the Psychiatry program at the University of
Texas Health Sciences Center of San Antonio (UTHSCSA). I am also a U.S. special operations veteran with
hundreds of hours of firearms training. I have been asked by Students for Concealed Carry to share my
opinions on the concealed carry policies at my educational institution. My opinions are strictly my own and do
not reflect any official position held by UTHSCSA, the Department of Defense, or any other institution.

I am sad to report that after UTHSCSA implemented its campus carry policy in accordance with the Campus
Carry Law, nothing has changed. Determined to keep most of its campus gun-free in spite of the new law, the
university simply placed 30.06 signs on all of its academic and clinical buildings, making all of their hallways,
classrooms, and other spaces into one vast and contiguous "exclusion zone."

The concept of exclusion zones was written into the law for use in a few well-defined areas when there is clear
justification for them. UTHSCSA's justification for its much broader use of exclusion zones is incredibly vague
and essentially claims that medical education cannot accommodate concealed carry. Having participated in
medical education as both student and teacher, I can tell you this claim has no basis in reality. With the
exception of hospitals (where firearms are prohibited by other statutes) most medical education occurs in spaces
no different from those found on undergraduate campuses or in the local community.

Medical training is perfectly compatible with concealed carry. The law already places ultimate responsibility
on LTC holders to exercise safe practices and follow the letter of the law. Statistically, LTC holders are more
law-abiding and responsible than the general public; They are certainly capable of remaining so in a medical
setting. I urge fellow medical professionals to accept the reality of concealed carry, if for no other reason than
to bring down the wall of fear separating us from our patients who are responsibly carrying in rising numbers. I
also urge you as legislators to carefully reconsider a university's authority to create “reasonable rules”
regulating campus carry, as this authority clearly needs to be more narrowly defined and more tightly restricted.

Respectfully submitted,

Oscar Escano, MD

cc: Brian Bensimon, Students for Concealed Carry
Matthew R. Entsminger, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Attorney General Ken Paxton