A while back, a student at Georgia Tech, where I teach, showed me a series of anonymized “threats” that students in a notoriously difficult class of mine had posted in an online discussion forum. I’d just returned grades, and nobody was happy. “Does he have kids?” one asked. “I’m going to steal them and blackmail him,” answered another.” “Had kids,” added a third.
They’re the kind of comments you wouldn’t think twice about—just typical college students communing over a tough professor. Unless, that is, you also knew that those students might be permitted to carry concealed firearms on campus. Then their words might take on a different tenor, even if just hypothetically.
– Ian Bogost, “The Armed Campus in the Anxiety Age“