Republicans Acknowledge the Undeniable Appeal of Gays with Guns


bash this!

Clearly, the endtimes are upon us. Republican Sens. Tom Coburn (Okla.) and John Thune (S.D.) are offering eyeing the possibility of proposing* friendly amendments to the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act, sponsored by Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.).

It's a peculiarly Republican way of playing nice, to be sure: Coburn and Thune are proposing the addition of an amendment promoting interstate concealed carry. From the Democratic perspective, it's sort of like when your cat brings you a dead mouse. Sure, you're grossed out, but maybe the cat meant it as a gesture of friendship—or at least an acknowledgement of your superior position in the pack (pride?).

From Reason's own Dave Weigel, in today's Washington Independent:

"Self-defense with a firearm is a valid and viable method of self-defense and protection," said Gwen Patton, a spokesperson for Pink Pistols. "Imagine that individuals follow you from a place known in the neighborhood as a GLBT gathering place. They follow you to your car, and when you try to open the door, they hold out pipes and yell—'Hey, faggot!' You pull out a concealed weapon that you have a license to carry. They say, 'He's got a gun!' They drop their pipes and run away. No shots were fired, but a beating was just averted."

And a little political handicapping of the strange alliance:

Supporters of concealed carry reciprocity are confident that it would be passed as part of a hate crimes bill, and not become a poison pill that kills the entire package. "Every Republican senator is on the record with a position on hate crimes legislation," said GOProud's [Jimmy] LaSilvia. "If this were to be attached, a vote for the bill could be explained as a vote for concealed carry. Gosh—what would happen when the Family Research Council realized that their people were voting for the 'gay bill.' It would put a bunch of people in a really weird position. It would be fun to watch."

More on gays and Republicans here.

*no amendment has been formally proposed.