In an article about the murder of Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, MO, Greg Howard has just set the Internet a blaze. In one paragraph he shows us how un-seriously law enforcement views the open carry gun rights activists who go into Starbucks, Target, Chipotle and other retail/food establishments.
In fact there is something that truly creates fear in the hearts of police departments everywhere in the United States, and that is simply people of color.
As Howard writes:
To ascribe this entirely to contempt for black men is to miss an essential variable, though—a very real, American fear of them. They—we—are inexplicably seen as a millions-strong army of potential killers, capable and cold enough that any single one could be a threat to a trained police officer in a bulletproof vest. There are reasons why white gun’s rights activists can walk into a Chipotle restaurant with assault rifles and be seen as gauche nuisances while unarmed black men are killed for reaching for their wallets or cell phones, or carrying children’s toys. Guns aren’t for black people, either.
Unless you are a open carry gun rights activist that has some tie to a white supremacist group or a militia that the Department of Homeland security is monitoring; I actually say this is pretty much a legitimate statement. Gun rights activists are nuisances while a black kid with a toy gun in Wal-Mart or is a threat. Howard’s piece is excellent and I highly recommend reading it all the way through, as he touches on not only the race issue but the militarization of police departments everywhere.
The image above is from a gopusa.com’s email blast. Conservatives love their guns so much that they’re willing to take on the entertainment industry instead of the gun lobby and it’s handmaiden the National Rifle Association. We get that there is violence in our culture and that mental illness is also an issue that must be dealt with, but that doesn’t excuse the gun lobby one bit. We’re not saying get rid of guns entirely but they have to be regulated, which appears to be a step too far for the gun loving crowd.
From the Everytown.org website:
Richard Martinez, whose son was killed in the Santa Barbara shootings, said the following:
“Today, I’m going to ask every person I can find to send a postcard to every politician they can think of with three words on it: Not One More. People are looking for something to do. I’m asking people to stand up for something. Enough is enough.”
If you want to send a postcard just visit:
Spoken like a true conservative.
Joe the once non-union unlicensed plumber said:
“I am sorry you lost your child. I myself have a son and daughter and the one thing I never want to go through, is what you are going through now. But: As harsh as this sounds — your dead kids don’t trump my Constitutional rights,” Wurzelbacher wrote.
The problem here is no one is trying to take the Second Amendment away. What conservatives fail to realize is that amendments can be regulated. You have a right to free speech for example, but you can’t yell fire in a crowded theater. We’re saying, put some restrictions on who can own guns and what types of guns they can have. The federal ban on assault weapons was a good idea and I’m sorry that George W. Bush let it expire.
Up until now most of the gun buyback programs have been run by local police departments. They’re the ones who set up the days where people can turn in firearms no questions asked. I remember one event in Los Angeles, that was held a few years ago, even turned up a military grade rocket launcher.
We know that these types of programs have proven to be very successful, so why not expand them? What if someone were to start a nonprofit whose purpose was to do these programs on a national scale? I’m sure that there has to be a foundation who has an area of focus dealing with peace building that might give to a program like this.
Let’s say that this nonprofit was able to sustain an operating budget of something like $5 million a year, that’s a lot of guns off of the streets. Who knows maybe there is an organization already doing this type of work that I haven’t heard of. I would suggest that maybe the federal government (DOJ perhaps?) should get involved but that might deter people from turning in their weapons.