Update: I’m running for president of the NRA. I just announced my candidacy on Twitter.
On the issue of gun control:
“Of course now is the time for this discussion — and if you can’t defend you position today then maybe your position isn’t as absolutely defensible as you might believe.” — Scott Paterno, Republican strategist, writing in Politico‘s The Arena.
And how is the NRA responding to the tragedy in Newton, Connecticut? Like a pack of cowards. UPDATE: The NRA has spoken, saying they want to contribute to a solution. Until I hear it (and probably afterward), I’ll be very leery.
While we await their response, please read this thoughtful essay, “The Freedom of an Armed Society.”
On Dec. 14, the day an armed citizen killed 26 unarmed women and children at a Connecticut elementary school, the NRA’s Twitter account went silent. It has not tweeted since. Meanwhile, its Facebook page has disappeared, along with those 1.7 million “likes.” Navigating to www.facebook.com/nationalrifleassociation now redirects to the Facebook homepage.
Obviously, the NRA’s leadership has failed. Change is called for. Time for a new direction for the NRA. I figure I’m the guy.
Now I know times are tough for the well-heeled, influential organization. They are absolutely beseiged. NBC News reported a small protest at NRA headquarters in Washington, D.C. Then I heard local news anchor Brenda Wood say that the group’s Facebook and Twitter accounts had been shut down “due to death threats,” but I thought she was just making it up, since I hadn’t heard this tidbit anywhere else.
So I Googled NRA and death threats and saw several recent posts on the issue, all by right wing blogs and websites. As it turned out, it was all a rehash of a piece on Twitchy, reprinted on Powerline. It amounts to this: Some people showed their asses with some nasty Tweets.
Some of the tweets weren’t even decent death threats, just irate reactions from conservative victim fetishists. To wit, someone decided, based on a half dozen butthead tweets. that liberals want 4.3 million NRA members dead. (Are we seeing pre-revolutionary talk here?)
I don’t want to kill anybody, but I may not actually be a liberal. (I haven’t been tested.) Does voting for Obama automatically qualify me? After all, a lot of moderates can’t bring themselves to vote Republican any more, either, for reasons moderates and liberals understand.
But kill? Hell, no. I think we all ought to join the NRA! Members vote on policy and leaders, right? I’m already running for president.
It’s sad that America is so divided now that people ARE entitled to their own facts, after all. For example, look at this quote, posted by a pro-gun friend on facebook: “An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it.” — Col. Jeff Cooper
Uh. No. Many men have faced evil unarmed. I’ll take just about anything Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said over what Col. Cooper said.* The NRA folks are going to love the guests speakers I invite, don’t you think?
*Then again, to be fair to Col. Cooper, he made his living teaching people how to win gunfights.
Dr. King wasn’t fleeing evil when he died. He was standing on a balcony of a Memphis motel when he was gunned down from a distance by an assassin armed with a hunting rifle.
I thought of him—and of Gandhi—when I saw this picture nearly 25 years ago. I don’t think it ended well for the student (no one knows what happened to him, really) but if you believe in something strongly enough, what a way to be remembered. His name: Tank man.
Then there’s my post on Hosea Williams’s 1987 marches in Forsyth County, Georgia. So no, my friend, you don’t have to flee evil just because you’re not packing heat.