UT professor's decision to carry handgun a 'no-brainer'

"I see this as taking advantage of every tool that I have at my disposal to protect the people that are in my charge."

Since July 2016, full time employees at the University of Tennessee with a handgun carry permit have been allowed to carry their firearm on campus, though there are some restrictions as to where they can carry.

"When the law changed, I of course was already carrying outside of campus," said Dr. Bob Legg, a professor in the UT School of Journalism and Electronic Media said. "It was a no-brainer for me. I feel like our world has changed."

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Legg first obtained a carry permit in 1987, and has continued to regularly train with his gun.

"Many of the courses you have to pay for, and I've invested both that time and money to make sure I'm comfortable with my skill, first that I'm not going to inadvertently hurt someone, and secondly that I'll be ready when and if a situation should arise," Legg said.

After the law changed in 2016, Legg started carrying on campus as well.

At the beginning of each semester, he tells his students that he carries a concealed firearm and the class has a discussion on safety.

"Not everyone agrees, but we at least discuss it in a manner such that they know at least how to react if there is a problem and where I stand," Legg said.

In addition to carrying his firearm on campus, Legg works with a security team at his church, and believes educators that have the desire and ability to carry a firearm should be allowed to do so at all school levels.

"We've had tragedies at every level. At elementary schools all the way up through Virginia Tech and others," Legg said. "I see this as taking advantage of every tool that I have at my disposal to protect the people that are in my charge."