Mass Shootings

If You Think Trump Is a Fascist, You Should Oppose Gun Control

Don't combine an authoritarian president with a disarmed populace.



Following the unfathomably tragic events in Las Vegas, many on the left are demanding that Congress pass new restrictions on guns. Such calls make even less sense than usual, given what much of the left already believes about the current political environment: that a fascist occupies the White House.

"Yes, Donald Trump is a fascist," wrote The New Republic's Jamil Smith. He said that in 2015, when Trump was still merely a primary challenger; associating Trump with fascism has grown only more common in the two years since.

"This is how fascism comes to America," wrote Robert Kagan, a former Republican, in a Washington Post piece widely shared last year on both the left and the NeverTrump right: "not with jackboots and salutes (although there have been salutes, and a whiff of violence) but with a television huckster, a phony billionaire, a textbook egomaniac 'tapping into' popular resentments and insecurities, and with an entire national political party—out of ambition or blind party loyalty, or simply out of fear—falling into line behind him."

"Trump's not Hitler," wrote Salon's Fedja Buric in 2016. But that was only because: "He's Mussolini." Buric's article is about "How GOP anti-intellectualism created a modern fascist movement in America."

The Daily Beast's Jay Michaelson held out until Trump pardoned Sheriff Joe Arpaio, at which point he declared, "at a certain point, 'fascist' becomes the most accurate term to describe what this man does….'Fascist' is not an incendiary slur—it is an accurate description."

Those are high-profile writers; grassroots activists have been less measured. The antifa movement, which for some reason thinks smashing windows and setting cars on fire is an effective form of resistance, regularly claims that Trump is a modern incarnation of Nazism. Left-leaning students and professors frequently accuse Trump of fascism; some have even maintained that members of Trump's Cabinet, like Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, are white supremacists by mere association.

Some of this, like that charge against DeVos, is absurd. But not all of the narrative is ridiculous. Fascist or not, Trump's incoherent ideology includes a mix of xenophobia, nationalism, protectionism, and worship of law enforcement. It's an awfully authoritarian brew.

Which brings us back to gun control, something countless liberal pundits and Democratic congresspeople are breathlessly demanding right now. How on earth could anyone believe both that Trump is a fascist and that it's a good idea for a federal government he runs to take guns away from law-abiding citizens? If Trump is a budding Mussolini—let alone something worse—then you shouldn't want to give him the power required to wage a war on guns. Keep in mind that many gun owners are people of color, who would be (and frequently have been) disproportionately affected by enforcement of new gun laws. Indeed, if Trump wanted to further damage immigrants and communities of color, eroding their rights and jailing their men, he could find no more powerful tool than a license to confiscate guns.

Don't normalize Trump's fascism. Don't demand a disarmed populace.

NEXT: Rick & Morty Takes on the American Presidency

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  1. He is, and I do.

    1. You, and the hair, now on many lists.

      1. Wait, nowadays, most people think “the hair” is Trump. I was talking about Robby. Didn’t we start doing that before it was cool?

        1. I understood that you were talking about Robby.
          Hair – Robby
          Jacket – Nick
          Monocle -Ron

          1. Bobby Clown, the correct nomenclature is Coif.

            1. I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life.

              This is what I do…

    2. Godamnit, when is Jimmy Kimmel gonna come out for some sensible hurricane control?

      1. I mean, as far as I know, despite all the recent tragedies, hurricanes are still perfectly legal. Just because we don’t know how to stop them does not mean we need to keep legitimizing them.

  2. ‘Fascist’ is not an incendiary slur?it is an accurate description.

    Well, if you’re requestin’ that we wax ACCURATE now, “fascist” just as apt a description of most national politicians – including every president – since about 1930.

    1. Thank you for not including my man Teddy R on your list.

      1. Teddy Roosevelt’s method for Making America Great Again would have been him staring angrily at America until it straightened up its act. Then Teddy and America would go out into the woods and shoot something.

        Real Talk: i think TR would have totally been on board with fascism, had fascism been a coherent social/political/economic philosophy in his day.

        1. Real Talk: i think TR would have totally been on board with fascism, had fascism been a coherent social/political/economic philosophy in his day.

          I don’t know about that, but he was an authoritarian for sure.

          1. And a bully bully.

            1. He learned that one from Hihn.

              1. Hihn was like a father figure to Teddy R. Teaching Teddy R how to deal with bullies helped Hihn get over the grief of losing ENB’s great-great-grandmother.

    2. And every single bunch of ‘activists’ Left OR Right (though somehow it seems to be Left more often than not) that takes to the streets and damages property and threatens or commits violence to impose their political agenda.

      If you are in the street, throwing things, swinging sticks, amd shouting, then the difference between you and the German SA is not big enough to matter.

  3. I had to re-read the byline four times before believing it.

    Good article, Rico.

  4. Funny that the same late night show hosts who have been relentlessly trying to tear him down, are now pleading for his help.

    1. shut up and take my guns!

  5. I figure the progs are hoping that Trump is only a temporary interruption in the march to The Socialist Workers’ Utopia. Soon Queen Hillary will ascend to her rightful place on the throne, to be followed by some other leftist hero/heroine.

    1. It won’t be Hillary, it’ll be Kamala Harris. These people are pissed we’re still electing white guys to office, they thought once you go black you never go back.

      1. Or maybe Cory Booker?

      2. What’s Pocahantas? Chopped pemmican?

    2. …to be followed by some other leftist hero/heroine.”

      They’re hoping for a hero and heroine. In their never-ending identity politics, Leftists have done the “first black president” thing, and Hillary would punch the “first woman president” card; they’ll be looking for “first transexual president” next.

  6. Yeah, let’s crack down really hard guns. What race do liberals think that will affect the most?

    1. You say that like they wouldn’t welcome the “unintended consequence”. Almost everything progs do has a disproportionately negative effect on poor people, especially the ones “of color”. I think it is by design.

  7. I find it funny that Trump gets called Hitler, Trump haters are calling it 1938. Now they want Hitler to come after the citizens guns. I guess they want to double down on the 1938.

    1. That is pretty curious isn’t it? We have had this horrible event, please Mr. Dictator use it to take everyone’s rights.

    2. Anyone who is Black, Jewish, LGBT, of Armenian or a dozen other ancestries shouldn’t have to have the Second Amendment explained to them.

    3. Its all smoke and mirrors. These lefties are socialists like Hitler was a socialist and socialists want an unarmed populace. It a lot harder to control an armed populace.

  8. So my normally unopinionated sister-in-law posted a link for Everytown which supports ‘common sense’ gun restrictions. I can help explain the motivation: they are frightened by their own children, whom they refused to educate on morality and now suddenly realize that they must delegate parental responsibility to the government. “Since my child doesn’t know right from wrong (as I am reminded daily), it is up to the government to protect us. And if my child does become a mass killer, well that that is because of ‘mental illness’.”

    1. Amazingly – they fear their own children more than Der Drumpf.

      1. Why not? George Holy War Bush et alii taught children to rat on their parents for thoughtcrime.

    2. “”supports ‘common sense’ gun restrictions.””

      They know nothing about firearms, therefore, they have no common sense starting point regarding firearm ownership.

      Common sense is a code word for “what they want”. Yet they wonder why we can’t have an honest debate.

      1. The Brady Bill was common sense gun control, therefore anything that goes beyond that goes beyond common sense, right? That’s what I’ve always asked people who argue for “reasonable” gun laws – what laws then would you consider to be “unreasonable”? They never have an answer for that. It’s always just “more” with those folks.

  9. I wish someone would ever bother to explain why Trump is any more authoritarian than Obama or any other President for that matter. Do people think that saying mean things on twitter is what makes a government or a leader authoritarian? Are they that stupid?

    1. He is just more open about it, so yes.

      1. I don’t even think he is more open about it. Bush basically called anyone who objected to the Patriot Act or the Iraq war in league with the terrorists. Time and again, Obama characterized his opponents as some sort of unAmerican other. Obama’s favorite rhetorical device was to construct the most offensive straw man possible of his opponents in the form of “some say…” and then, of course, renounce that. He called the Republicans terrorists for not wanting to raise the debt ceiling.

        If anything, Trump is less open about it.

      2. I would say he’s more clumsy about it, actually. The idea is to pave the Road to Serfdom quietly, in private, while loudly proclaiming that we’re not paving the road. Trump’s out there riding the steamroller.

        1. The real tyranny is the bureaucracy. And Trump is the first President since Reagan to actually reduce its power. I don’t see how you can square the idea that he is some kind of authoritarian riding the steamroller on the road to serfdom with his unrelenting attack on the bureaucracy. It just doesn’t make any sense.

          1. The steamroller is in the shop until further notice while they figure out how to lower its blocks.

            1. Get back to me when it gets out of the shop. I can only judge him on his actions.

          2. He worked with the Democrats a couple weeks ago to give it the only fuel it needs – piles and piles of cash.

        2. He’s added a big honkin’ spoiler and 24″ spinning rims to the steamroller.

          1. Again, how so? What has he done? And how do you square that with his assault on the regulatory state? I don’t see how someone can be an authoritarian and then be so committed to reducing the regulatory power of government.

            1. Piles and piles of cash.

              1. Spending is not what makes a government authoritarian.

                1. Not sufficient, but necessary.

            2. What has he done?

              Exactly the same stuff that has been done, except is he is a dick about it, as well as everything else.

              1. Trump is taking the polite out of polite totalitarianism.

          2. And truck-nuts.

            1. Yes?

      3. Stroke of the pen, law of the land, pretty cool.

    2. Yes, and Yes

    3. Open about what?

      He would wants to crack down on things that are already illegal. For that he gets called a racist. What do these people think a crack down on illegal guns would look like in terms of which race would get the most attention?

    4. I think it is less that Trump is himself an authoritarian, and more about what his core supporters feel emboldened to do because he is in power.

      His supporters know that Trump values loyalty above all else, so as long as they profess their undying love to The Orange One, Trump will give a wink and a nod to whatever his supporters do. At least Bush tried to tamp down the anti-Muslim sentiment after 9/11. Can you imagine how a President Trump would have responded after that? He would have talked smack about Muslims all day long, and who knows what would have happened as a result. And as bad as Obama’s strawmen were, they remained only strawmen. You could never picture either Bush or Obama saying to his supporters at a rally, “hey, if the other team comes here and starts trouble, and you hit back, I’ll pay your legal bills”, as Trump did.

      1. His supporters know that Trump values loyalty above all else, so as long as they profess their undying love to The Orange One,

        Yeah, that is why they all turned out in Alabama and voted for Strange in the Alabama Senate Primary right?

        Jesus Christ, either make it clear you are trying to be funny or just give up. This level of stupid is just not acceptable. It really isn’t.

      2. Obama had no need to play hardball or go on the defense, though, because he has our entire non-Fox News media and entertainment industry to do that for him. I hate Trump. His language is dangerous and irresponsible and embarrassing, but I understand the people who buy into his “fake news” schtick.

      3. “You could never picture either Bush or Obama saying to his supporters at a rally, “hey, if the other team comes here and starts trouble, and you hit back, I’ll pay your legal bills”,”

        It was Obama who said he was going to put his boot to the neck of anyone who disagreed with him. Can’t get much more authoritarian that and luckily he failed but he sure used the IRS and others to attack opposing views

      4. Good reading:

        NBC News: How Bernie Sanders Supporters Shut Down Donald Trump’s Rally in Chicago

        And as the repeated chants of “Ber-nie” demonstrated, it was largely organized by supporters of Sanders, the Democratic presidential candidate who has struggled to win over black voters but whose revolutionary streak has excited radicals of all racial demographics.

        “Remember the #TrumpRally wasn’t just luck. It took organizers from dozens of organizations and thousands of people to pull off. Great work,” tweeted People for Bernie, a large unofficial pro-Sanders organization founded by veterans of the Occupy movement and other leftist activists.

    5. His words are absolutely. His actions so far have been less authoritarian than Obama. His attacks on the press have so far just been mean words and trying to embarrass them. He has yet to label a reporter co-conspirator for espionage, as Obama did.

    6. Yes, they are. Consider the bell shaped curve, We all learned in school about averages, means, distributions, probabilities and so forth; but have you ever stopped to think that 50% of the entire population dwells to the left of the mean? That is why every other person you encounter is a certifiable dumb fuck.

    7. “Facist” is just the label Leftitst apply to anyone they don’t like when they want to say “Hitler” but think they need to sound more nuanced.

  10. The Second Amendment could be used against presidential regimes I like, so no thank you. Also, the very thought of it feels yucky, like I’m Todd Palin or something. Also, the government has the Army so what can you do with your little guns?

  11. I’m still waiting for Anti-fa to explain what they think fascism is. I know what it is, but I want to know what they think it is. So far it just seems like anyone that may disagree with them on any particular topic is a “fascist”. “”You believe in voluntary association and private property?!? Fascist!!!””

    1. The only explanation for disagreeing with a leftist is bad intentions. So if you disagree if then you have bad intentions. You are a fascist. It is the only explanation.

  12. How can progressives still be ardently pro-big-government in the Age of Trump? Imagine a modern progressive in Nazi Germany wringing their hands and bemoaning government inaction, and then calling you a fucking anarchist for daring to suggest placing limits on government.

    1. It is because the left is not living in reality when it comes to government.

      The left believes in fantasy government which is like some superhero, coming to the rescue of those who are hurting and punishing the evildoers. They refuse to recognize that the real government is simultaneously inept, corrupt, and oppressive.

      So when they advocate for more government, what they are really advocating for is some fictional superhero. If you look at it this way, it makes more sense.

      1. “”government which is like some superhero, coming “‘

        I’ve been saying it for decades. People want superman for President. They want the person who will magically solve all their problem.

        But that’s a total fail, because the President doesn’t hold the power. Congress does.

      2. This is true. It is hard to solve your own problems or to help solve the problems of those around you. Easier to imagine that an all-powerful state will do it for you. It won’t, of course, but understanding that doesn’t make them feel any better, and the entire point of lefty politics is to make lefties feel better.

        1. If you’ve ever watched a Star Trek movie notice the background scenes; everything is so perfectly managed by an apparently super organized and beneficent government that there are no problems, and they can expend all of their magically created resources just tooling around the galaxies and fucking with other civilizations. That, I suspect, is the foundation of many self proclaimed progressives.

    2. Because they are not good forward thinkers. They fail to understand cause and effect. They are sophist instead of principled in their beliefs. They need someone to play the role as parent in all aspects of their life. But that can’t be played by their actual parents because they hate them for their parenting.

    3. Because you just need to get the right people in power, as you just need to get the right laws made. That’s the trick to democracy. Currently, people voted for the wrong person and the General Will is not being satisfied, but once that gets fixed, things will go swimmingly.

      1. Even a law can be judged by who passes it.

  13. Just occurred to me. Go read Rose Wilder Lane’s Discovery of Freedom. She posits in one section that the British economic empire grew when it had inept and distracted monarchs, and stagnated when it had effective and attentive monarchs. In short, freedom flourished when the monarchs were not paying attention.

    Could this be Trump’s legacy? Maybe the reason he’s not escalating the regulatory state is because he’s distracted by that silly man in North Korea? Maybe our economy can finally get out of the doldrums because he’s spending all his time tweeting instead of governing? Something to ponder.

    1. King Donald, First of His Name, of House Drumpf?

      1. Future historians will look back at our era and name “Drumpfian America”.

        1. The beneficent and lazy despots of future Great America will have neural feeds directly connecting their every idle thought to whatever social media platform is most widely used, in order to ensure that they don’t get distracted by trying to deal with real issues.

    2. That alt-right author? Her mother Laura Ingalls helped instill a sense of self-sufficiency and pioneer spirit in Americans that we are only just now successfully stamping out.

      1. Her father also had some Arabic roots. Damned Sharia law infecting the prairie!

  14. When a liberal says Trump should do something about gun control. Just ask them, “Why? He’s not your President?”

    1. +1

      I like the cut of your jib.

      Would you like to be captain?

  15. It’s all about the magic of intentions. Trump has bad intentions. Gun grabbers have good intentions. The end.

  16. I’m against gun control but willing to entertain gun control to divide Republicans and hopefully destroy Trump.

    1. Keep making government more and more powerful and then it will just whither away into nothing.

    2. Yes, permanently giving up a right in order to cause one’s enemies inconvenience in the short term is always a wise choice.

    3. You know they’;re just making fun of you, right?

  17. I’m in agreement with the premise of the article overall, but regardless of who is President, it is absolutely absurd to think that privately held guns would mean jack shit against the full might of our armed forces in the doomsday scenario where it was actually people versus government. Assuming of course that the military went along with the government in such a conflict. What the heck is your semi-auto Glock going to do against a Sherman tank or a Tomahwak or an Apache?

    1. A Sherman tank? I’ll see if I can find a museum that will let me shoot at one and let you know.

    2. What the heck is your semi-auto Glock going to do against a Sherman tank or a Tomahwak or an Apache?

      Ask any Vietnam vet how superior weaponry guarantees a win against those less well-armed.

      Or a British soldier in America in the late 1700s, if you have a time machine.

  18. Meant to say Abrams. You get the idea.

    1. I think my answer would be: almost all post-WWII military history.

      The delusion is in thinking one guy with an AR can do anything. Obviously, he can’t, and no one thinks any different.

      So-called “assault weapons” are the most popular weapon going, but they are also used in fewer murders than baseball bats. And yet, these are always the first weapons on the table for regulation. Why? The threat to a government isn’t a guy with a rifle. The threat to a government is hundreds of millions of people with rifles. The US has been getting their asses kicked all over the globe for decades now by populations with rifles.

    2. The crew has to dismount sometime-maintenance, refuel, heck they have to eat and sleep. A tank isn’t a miracle weapon that protects its crew from death. Lots of ways to defeat a tank (and a helicopter and a jet, for that matter).

  19. Uh, the easier thing would be to simply vote Trump out next time around.

  20. How is it that within twelve hours, the FBI determined the Vegas shooter had no connection to ISIS, but after twelve months the same FBI is still ‘investigating’ a Russian connection with Trump?

    1. SSSHHH! Stop making sense!

  21. masterful article, well done

  22. How come when the talk about gun control comes around people automatically talk about taking the guns away from law-abiding citizens and not ways to prevent criminals from acquiring guns. The murderer was a law-abiding citizen right until be decided to murder 59 people.

    As we saw in the Philando Castile case, and others that being a legal gun owner as a minority doesn’t matter.

  23. Well, we’re only going to disarm The Left …..
    by gagging them!

  24. I don’t think Trump is a fascist, but I do think Hillary is a fascist. May I still oppose gun control? Pretty please, Reason?

  25. If we are going to ban ownership I want to make sure that all the rich liberals who have armed guards are the first to give up their protection. This includes congress and the federal judges. When no one can legally own a gun, no one should be able to own one. The police can patrol with billy clubs! That should stop them from shooting young black yuuts! Imagine how safe everyone will feel, granted it maybe tough getting those bloods from shooting up the hood with billy clubs but that is the po po’s problem.

  26. If You Think Trump Is a Fascist, You Should Oppose Gun Control – Hit & Run : Reason.comis the best post by imo for pc Please visit imo app imo app snaptube for pc snaptube app

  27. Gun owners don’t all interpret freedom the same way. Many will fight for a repressive government and not against it. Lots of Americans with guns means lots of armed men in America. This has no bearing on preserving freedom. The last time armed militiamen fought the over each of federal power the did it to preserve their right to keep enslaving other human beings.

    No more delusions that having cool guns makes us double as 21s tcentury militiamen. We are just dudes with cool guns that want to keep buying them. Consequence of our hobby is every week or so someone kills dozens.

    Let’s be true patriots and sacrifice our hobby for the lives of our citizens.

    Mass surrender and confiscation buy backs of any weapon other than a revolver, a 45 (1911) or a bolt action single shot rifle (calibers that don’t have too much muzzle velocity)

    We can be reasonable. Nothing in Heller prevents this type of arms control on steroids.

    Dad. Husband. Former Marine. Gun enthusiast,

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