Racism, Nannyism, and the Politics of Gun Control

We've heard a lot of calls for new gun control laws this year, but Daniel McCarthy doesn't think any legislation is on the way:

Restrictions on Second Amendment rights were politically viable for about 20 years as a response to rising urban violence (the big cities still, for the most part, maintain their anti-gun laws) and the racial politics of the '60s and early '70s. Consider California’s 1967 Mulford Act, signed by Governor Reagan, which prohibited open carry and elicited an armed (but peaceful) protest in Sacramento from the Black Panthers.

Gun control was the offspring of liberal nannyism and racialized right-wing fears for law and order. The latter have had a different outlet in recent decades, with an emphasis on prisons and unleashing the unitary executive -- when there's a Republican in office, at any rate -- against subversives real or imagined at home and abroad. Safety-first liberalism by itself doesn't have the mass appeal to give gun control political currency. There are millions of gun owners, and unless millions more Americans fear they might be victims of gun violence, there won't be any national momentum for restrictions.

Elsewhere in Reason: "Controlling Guns, Controlling People."

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  • Heroic Mulatto||

    My next musical group will be called "Armed Negro Band".

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    We already have The Negro Problem.

  • John||

    There are several good band names in this post

    American Fear
    The Mulford Act
    They might be victims
    Mass Appeal

  • RBS||

    Mass Appeal sounds like a shitty hipster band that deliberately sucks in order for the name to be ironic.

  • John||

    Yeah. It is not the best. But I really like Mulford Act and They Might Be Victims. American Fear sounds like a shitty heavy metal band.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    OT: First look at new ALF movie. !

  • ||

  • John||

    It has now become just a cultural thing with the Left. Guns are icky because people they hate like them. That is really all there is too it. Listen to Shreek or Tony on here. As repulsively stupid as they are, people really do think like that. And for most liberals it is about hating the other, the Christ fags, the Fundies, the red necks, always someone. And part of hating the other is hating what they do. If the wrong people didn't like guns, liberals would be all for the 2nd Amendment.

  • o3||

    so scalia is now a lub-rahl for saying there can be reasonable limits on the 2d?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Indeed. The thought of an AK-47 in the hands of a swarthy, frothing-at-the-mouth rabid Jew-hating Palestinian leaves the Left with a tingly feeling inside.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Sugar Free'd the link

    HTML tag failure

    Happens all the time

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The fuck? Do squirrels have a problem with underscores now too?

  • SugarFree||

    You have displeased me. Make amends and I will bestow my grace upon thee.

  • tarran||

    I disagree:

    In my experience, progressives hate guns because they fear people will hurt them. In conversation after conversation, the end point I get to is...

    a) I don't want a gun because I am scared of them {my kids will shoot themselves, it will go off, etc}

    b) I don't want my neighbors to have guns because if we get into an argument they will likely shoot me

    c) If there aren't any guns around, then people will call the police and resolve disputes in a civilized manner.

    Many of them are coming from that mindset that society should be organized like an elementary school, with the citizenry as the children and the cops as the principal (govt officials are the teachers natch).

    Some of the progressives I talk to were encouraged to go shooting as kids and were pretty good marksmen in their day. They still are scared of their neighbors having guns.

  • John||

    I think we are both right. There is some of that going on for sure. And I think that reinforces their cultural revulsion towards guns. Liberals were not always anti-gun. It wasn't until it became a culture war issue that they went so universally against them.

  • RBS||

    You can both be right and I think yall are. You can definitely be scared of guns and at the same time hate that evil redneck neighbor for wanting his guns. I can't imagine going through life terrified by the thought of an inanimate object.

  • LarryA||

    But there's a disconnect to the fear.

    As a shooting instructor I'm a high-profile CHL. Yet time and again I've had anti-gun types really get in my face, arguing that they have a right not to be in fear that someone is carrying a gun, which will result in the CHL getting angry, flipping out, and shooting them.

    Meanwhile I'm standing there, wondering why they're trying to get me into an argument when they have to suspect I'm carrying, and in their mind liable to flip out and shoot them.

    It's like, deep down, they know we aren't really violent.

  • tarran||

    Yeah, I certainly do see the phenomenon you're talking about.

    Especially when you first talk to gun-grabbers, they initially frame it in those very way - evil rethuglicans want guns to keep black people out of their towns and the like.

    It's when I ask "Why do you care?" that the deep underlying stuff starts coming up.

    I should acknowledge there is a huge contingent who think that their neighbors could be trusted with guns, but thieves would steal those guns and sell them to people in the inner city who would use them on each other. Unsurprisingly, a large number of progressives feel that the lower classes/races should be denied firearms for their own good - and that the only way to make that happen is to deny them to everyone, which is, or course, yet another manifestation of the "white man's burden".

    For those people, saying that guns should be denied to inbred country folk is a socially acceptable way of saying something similar to the socially unacceptable thing of saying guns should be denied to residents of poor, urban areas.

  • John||

    Yup. It is like the descendants of the Woodrow Wilson progressives had to have somewhere to get their racism on after it was no longer acceptable to be openly racist against black people. So they chose poor whites as the new Goldstein.

  • ||

    Don't forget the best one:

    d) if I had a gun, I'd kill someone

  • Spoonman.||

    A guy once told me "If pot were legal, I'd smoke way more than I do now. I don't want that."

  • Drake||

    That's the real one. Progressives always project. Since they hate and have violence in their hearts, they assume everyone does. Therefore, nobody should have guns.

  • fried wylie||

    "Press Corps draws fire of Legislator"

    *double take*

    Oh...

  • JDMont||

    So, if liberals are correct in asserting that voter ID laws are racist because blacks somehow are unable to obtain appropriate identification, then aren't laws requiring an ID for firearms purchases equally racist?

  • John||

    Don't forget, liberals care desperately about everyone voting unless it involves military members casting absentee ballots. Then they will sue to make sure their votes are not counted.

  • LarryA||

    It's PC to discriminate against minorities in the name of gun control.

    The part I don't get is why minorities not having photo ID isn't evidence of discrimination, which must immediately be corrected by Federal legislation.

  • Bardas Phocas||

    Repeat from the AM links:
    Scary Gun Ruins Hipster's Dinner Party - Ban the Muthas!
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....ml?hpid=z3

  • John||

    Unless I had to sign for it, I would have been like "what sig sauer?" What a waste. Now the DC cops will keep it and either steal it or destroy it.

    And I am surprised douchebag hipster admitted he was ordering a TV. That is so bourgeois.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Wow, what a douchebag. It would have been funny if the cops he called busted him for violating DC's gun laws, though.

  • toddb||

    How did they possibly survive an encounter with an "assault" rifle??...those things kill people you know...

  • LTC(ret) John||

    Hey man, you ain't seen nothing until you have seen a SEMI-AUTOMATIC ASSAULT RIFLE begin cavorting and spinning around a room, randomly firing rounds off until it runs out of ammo. Can take two or three people to wrassle one of them critters and lock it up.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    I don't want my neighbors to have guns because if we get into an argument they will likely shoot me

    "Because I would like to shoot him for disagreeing with me. Everyone is just like me."

  • John||

    ^^This^^ It is the same reason liberals are always convinced the Tea Parties are violent despite all evidence to the contrary. It is not that they have concluded the Tea Parties are violent. It is that liberals desperately want them to be violent so they can justify the violence they so desperately would like to engage in.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    That's for damn sure. I remember when the Tea Party first hit the scene and the press went gaga over the picture of the guy (one frickin' guy mind you) with an AR-15 slung across his back. The Daily Kos guys went fucking bananas, going on about how the racist teabaggers were planning to shoot Obama and his daughters, and how this would trigger a race war.

    The funniest part was where they were braying that "those rednecks will find out they aren't the only ones who have guns" and about how they would fight in the race war on the side of their black brothers and sisters. Ha, as if the blacks would somehow trust a pasty-faced surburbanite just because he has an Obama sticker on his car.

  • tarran||

    That guy with the AR-15 was black, BTW, which makes your post even funnier.

  • Generic Stranger||

    Yup. That was the funniest/stupidest thing about that. A black guy with an AR-15 shows up to a tea party protest, gets along fine with everyone there, no one is killed or shot, and liberals took that as evidence that tea partiers were racist violent rednecks.

  • T||

    "It's easy to renounce physical violence if you aren't very good at it."

  • tarran||

    This old story I told seems apropos:

    One of the funnier stories from my days [in Ohio]. There was a guy who was an awesome PLC programmer who bought a house in the country, and would have relatives come over every fourth of July for a big bash. One of the things they would do at the big bash was shoot guns, shotguns, hunting rifles, hand guns etc.

    One spring, this family moved in across the road. He thought them OK, but complained that they were not country people and on occasion violated various rules of backwoods etiquette.

    July 4th rolls around. The relatives come over. The barbecue starts. The kids are running around playing various games. People are swimming in the brook. The guns come out.

    The mother across the street calls the cops. She is in hysterics. Her children are in danger, she tearfully tells the 911 operator.
  • tarran||

    The cops show up. The size up the situation. They are visibly baffled. They ask her if the guns were being fired into her property. She says no. They tell her that then there is no crime taking place. One of the cops opines that if he weren't on duty he'd like to join in. She then claims that why yes, they were firing into her property, but stopped after she told them she was calling the cops. Now everyone is upset. One of my friend's sisters-in-law, calls the woman a "stupid bitch". War is declared.

    My friend moved out 6 months later. He had found a dream house 10 miles away, one with neighbors that liked to hunt. He sold his house to another suburbanite family that wanted to enjoy the bucolic pleasures of living out in the country. They were opposed to hunting. The word on the street was that both families grew vegetable gardens that were destroyed by deer, rabbits raccoons towards the end of summer.
  • LTC(ret) John||

    I love a happy ending to a good story. Bless those critters and their veggie muching ways.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    Actually, fuck raccoons. Those motherfuckers ate my corn before I could devise a way to protect myself from them.

    And corn ain't even ready for another couple of weeks or so.

  • John||

    http://www.mecum.com/auctions/.....artRow=177

    I want this car, a driver, and four guards armed with sub machine guns. Because God Damn it, who doesn't want to feel like Edi Amin?

  • ||

    Dead link.

  • Trespassers W||

    You're thinking of Edi Brickell. And I, for one, don't want to feel like Edi Brickell.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    I want this car

    Is it a Lamborghini LM002? Otherwise, no.

  • John||

    Lambos are for philistines. If you are going super car, give me a Ferrari or a Aston Martin any day.

    It is a 1972 Merc 600 limousine.

    http://www.mecum.com/auctions/.....artRow=177

  • BakedPenguin||

    John, if you're going to SugarFree all your links, just tell us what the car is.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Oops, you did. Hangovers suck.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Also, this.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    How could you not want a ~200 mph aluminum bodied V-12 powered off road vehicle?

  • John||

  • The Late P Brooks||

    I live on a dirt road, and driving up and down the hill at 100 mph in a howling V-12 monster would be a pretty amusing way to torment the Californicators. But if I could afford a (real) GTO, I could probably afford to rent a garage in town.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Also, the Mercedes 600 is a horrendously complex and maintenance-intensive beast.

  • Entropy Void||

    Kinda OT, but more on the Wonderful Religion of Peace (AKA "Submit, you Dhimmi!")

    Boko Haram, a Borno State-based militant group whose goal is to institute sharia law in Nigeria, has become more proficient in carrying out attacks since a 2009 clash with security forces that led to the death of its leader, Ustaz Mohammed Yusuf. Since then, it has been blamed or claimed responsibility for numerous attacks on Nigerian government and civilian targets. Most attacks have occurred in the predominantly Muslim north of Nigeria, though the group's name has been called out in other bombings, such as the attacks against the United Nations headquarters and the main police building in the capital city of Abuja. The group itself has since splintered, with some members allied to Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb and some expecting terms of agreement similar to southern Nigeria's MEND.

    The attack took place on August 7, in the Deeper Life Bible Church, in the town of Otite, located on the outskirts of the city of Okene in the Kogi State in central Nigeria. Three men, armed with Kalashnikov assault rifles, entered the church prior to a Bible study session. One of the men switched off the generator that provided lighting in the church. The other two armed men fired into the darkness with their assault rifles. Fifteen people died on the scene and four more died later from their wounds.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D.....h_shooting

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