November 30, 2019-Lander, Wyoming.
In the wake of a series of technological bugaboos at WCC, many of which have finally begun to be sorted out to greater and lesser extents, sportsmen among the student body have uncovered an entirely new issue. A number of perfectly legitimate firearm and knife sales sites, including the likes of Smoky Mountain Knife Works, Bass Pro Shops, and Classic Firearms, have unexpectedly come up as being blocked by the school’s WiFi. According to a traditional understanding of school policy, these sites aren’t in opposition to any particular aspect of the sort of community that is being worked toward within the college. The following is an example of the message that is received when one attempts to access such a site:
Some have claimed that this is simply an oversight on the part of tech administrators, in much the same way as the brand new crash bar in the Crux coffee shop is a bit off-kilter. However, some have posited that there may be an ulterior motive for the new firewall setting. The category of ‘weapons sales’ was originally allowed when the new firewall was being reconfigured, having been so requested by one of the aforementioned sportsmen. Despite this, in the fairly recent past, such sites were again quietly blocked in all downtown locations. While a wide array of other sites are now functional, those pertaining to arms, and not merely to sales, but including forums and sites selling accessories as well, are inaccessible.
This has led to the speculation that the College must intend to sideline the firearm and knife culture on the campus, marginalizing that community by making it more difficult to exercise responsible gun and knife ownership by limiting the ability to place orders, compare prices, or gather information on the best use and maintenance techniques. In order to access any of this information, one must either find another location with enough available bandwidth to conduct one’s search, or one might possibly have to violate one’s own principles by doing such business in Crux without buying anything, as often occurs. Either way, the firewall does produce a burden on the student that may become a source of discouragement where obtaining, maintaining, and improving on safety and skill with arms is involved.
Whether the latter hypothesis is true or not, the fact does remain that these sites are currently blocked. Coincidence? Possibly. Likely, even. At any rate, we at Irkutsk Ice Truckers believe that that is up to the reader to decide. We advise the College community to stay safe out there and to remember to make a habit of actually buying something when camped out at any commercial establishment that offers free WiFi.