The NRA’s Frankenstein monster


The Frankenstein story is a morality tale that gets played over and over again in political life. A group (a government or political party or other organization) covertly supports and encourages extremists in order to achieve their own goals, thinking that they can control their surrogates and rein them in after they have served their purpose, only to find that the group has grown beyond its control and is determined to continue on its own path and in order to do us, turns against its own creator.

The examples are legion, the most notable recent one being US support for the anti-Russian insurgency in Afghanistan that eventually morphed into the Taliban and then al Qaeda. Russia seems to be facing a similar situation right now with the Ukrainian separatists. On the domestic level, the Republican party has supported a whole lot of extremist groups such as the Tea Party and climate change denialists who are now thriving on their own.

Things are so bad that the extremists are spawning even more extreme groups. The recent spat between the NRA and the group known as Open Carry Texas is a case in point. The NRA has been promoting the idea that people have the right of completely unbridled ownership of guns and to carry them anywhere at any time. The OCT took them at their word and its members went into a Chili’s fast food restaurant toting large semi-automatic weapons, freaking out the regular customers and this resulted in them being asked to not bring their guns into the store again.

This episode resulted in such bad publicity that the NRA, of all groups, has issued a sharply worded admonishment to the OCT telling them to cut it out. But OCT has turned on the NRA, accusing them of betraying the rights of gun owners.

The more the NRA continues to divide its members by attacking some aspects of gun rights instead of supporting all gun rights, the more support it will lose. Already, OCT members are posting pictures of themselves cutting up their life membership cards. If they do not retract their disgusting and disrespectful comments, OCT will have no choice but to withdraw its full support of the NRA and establish relationships with other gun rights organizations that fight for ALL gun rights, instead of just paying them lip service the way the NRA appears to be doing.

When the NRA is accused of being a bunch of sell-outs on the Second Amendment, then you know that you have a real Frankenstein monster on your hands.

Comments

  1. hyphenman says

    Good afternoon Mano,

    I can’t wait to see how the NRA digs itself out of this hole.

    This was my comment at HCWW:

    For the record, I consider concealed carry advocates cowards and wanna-bees. If you want to carry a firearm, then be true to our heritage and strap on a gun belt or sling arms.

    Be prepared, however, for the instant push back from your fellow citizens who will call you crazy. (Which is precisely why the NRA is all concealed-carry friendly.)

    The video from Chilli’s is hilarious.

    Do all you can to make today a good day,

    Jeff

  2. smrnda says

    The ‘open carry’ crowd pretty much sums up what’s wrong with American gun culture; idiotic macho posturing with total disregard for the safety of others.

  3. A Masked Avenger says

    Hyphenman:

    I can’t wait to see how the NRA digs itself out of this hole.

    The NRA doesn’t advocate open carry.

    For the record, I consider concealed carry advocates cowards and wanna-bees. If you want to carry a firearm, then be true to our heritage and strap on a gun belt or sling arms.

    That’s consistent with the origin of concealed-carry licensure, BTW: in an earlier time, Americans were generally unconcerned by open carry, but considered concealment to be a sign of bad intentions. Concealed-carry licenses were deemed “no an infringement,” because they affected only the manner of carry, and the assumption at the time was that you could always carry openly and honestly like decent folk do.

    Now that open carry is rare, and in many states illegal, concealed carry is the norm. It’s hard to see how, in context, that translates into cowardice, despite the fact that Americans of a prior century would have agreed with you. It’s harder still to see where “wannabe” fits in. Wannabe what? Wannabe cops, soldiers or cowboys, would presumably prefer open carry, since that’s the norm for all three.

    Sounds like a kind of obvious attempt to create a dilemma: carry concealed and you’re a big chicken; carry openly and you’re a big freak. Which makes perfect sense when the real viewpoint is “carry at all, in any manner, and you’re a contemptible person.” I don’t go in for that approach, because I try not to bait people just for the hell of it.

    Somewhat amusingly, the open carriers loosely agree with you: they’d like to see the day return when sight of a gun was seen as commonplace, and possibly even when concealment was considered somewhat unsavory. Some of them liken themselves to closeted homosexuals, suffering when “hoplophobes” see them “openly carrying.”

    Even more amusingly, of course, these douchenozzles carrying rifles and such are their own worst enemy. If they really see themselves as “the new gay,” and their plan is to normalize their “lifestyle,” so they can “come out of the closet” without encountering “hoplophobia,” then they shouldn’t be doing the equivalent of strutting around in a roomful of kids wearing nothing but assless chaps. Part of “normalizing” something would seem to include convincing people that you are, well, normal.

  4. Menyambal says

    Yeah, like any other non-reality group, they are splintering and schisming. The second amendment has nothing to do with individual gun ownership.

    Also like the religious, they can’t read for squat. The NRA note was actually well-written and sane, but the Texans have gone all paranoid. Yes, toting a big bunch of big guns into a privately-owned public place, just to be seen with the guns, is creepy and a wrong move. Refusing to stay in the place without a big gun is paranoia, indeed.

    When your actions are founded on the premise that there are crazy people with guns in the world, and you are acting like a crazy person with a gun, you are circling the rabbit hole.

  5. Glenn says

    “Russia seems to be facing a similar situation right now with the Ukrainian separatists.”

    In Victoria Nuland’s F**k the EU statement, much was made of her potty mouth but hidden in plain sight were machinations for the installation of the Ukrainian Kiev fascists. Listen here, if you dare, to the real obscenity.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSxaa-67yGM

    I’m sure searchers for truth will recognize the instability $5 billion can buy in NATO’s eastward push toward Russia in violation of previous post-Soviet-collapse agreements. The State Cozy media will repeat the lie until it seems normal.

    If anything, I’d say the Frankenstein run amok here is Obama’s. He has been itching for a war to build his macho cred.

  6. Dunc says

    If you want to carry a firearm, then be true to our heritage and strap on a gun belt or sling arms.

    And hand them in at the sheriff’s office when you go into town.

    Honestly, do these people get their entire knowledge of their “heritage” from bad Westerns?

  7. hyphenman says

    @Dunc

    I suppose some do, but mine comes mostly from an undergraduate degree in History–granted, my focus was on the (then) Soviet Union and Middle East–but I did read my share of 18th, 19th and 20th century History regarding the United States.

    Having said that, my phrasing was intentionally flippant and meant to be just a bit sardonic.

    Jeff

    p.s. and we people do have names. 🙂

  8. hyphenman says

    @A Masked Avenger

    Of course the NRA doesn’t advocate open-carry. But Mano’s (and by extension, my) point is that the NRA owns the issue because (like the Republican Party and its Tea Party bad seed) the NRA created the environment that gave us Open Carry Texas.

    Jeff

  9. Dunc says

    @hyphenman: Sorry. I misread your comment and thought you were quoting somebody else.

  10. hyphenman says

    @ A Masked Avenger

    Cowardly, as in living with a fear that they feel can only be compensated by with a firearm. Whether or not an individual’s fear is of a real or imagined threat can be a topic of discussion, but the numbers and crime statistics simply do not support the rational need for an average American walking the streets to do so with a semi-automatic pistol and fully loaded magazine.

    I express this opinion as a gun owner, a one-time member of the NRA, an 11-year veteran of our armed services and someone who routinely visits and works in areas of Cuyahoga County, Ohio that some local suburbanites and exurbanites consider dangerous.

    As far as my wanna-be remark, I think Ralphie best exemplifies my thought.

    Jeff

  11. A Masked Avenger says

    @hyphenman

    Cowardly, as in living with a fear that they feel can only be compensated by with a firearm.

    I frown on amateur psychologizing. Diagnosing paranoia, anxiety disorders or small-penis syndrome is best left to the experts. It is assuredly not true as a generalization.

    the numbers and crime statistics simply do not support the rational need for an average American walking the streets to do so with a semi-automatic pistol and fully loaded magazine.

    Many of them would reply that the numbers don’t support the need to bother with seat belts or fire extinguishers either: the probability of experiencing an auto accident or a fire is also quite low. Indeed, the numbers don’t support cops carrying guns either–over 90% of cops never use a firearm in the line of duty for their entire careers. This is a losing argument for us; we can do better.

    I express this opinion as a gun owner…

    If you’re saying that you really did experience paranoia, an anxiety disorder, or small-dick syndrome, then you can certainly add to the dialogue by telling your story. If so, it’s important to make it clear that it’s your story, and not an unprofessional diagnosis of all gun owners everywhere, arrived at without even examining the (70 million or so) patients.

    Note: I’m in law enforcement, and do own firearms. I normally (but not always) carry one on the job, and have never so much as touched it with my pinky except to put it away at the end of the day. I do, in fact, advocate disarming most cops.

  12. hyphenman says

    @ A Masked Avenger

    I’m neither a physician nor do I play one on television. You asked in what sense did I use the phrase cowardly.

    I’ll give you fire extinguishers (that’s a fear driven market, a box of baking soda in the kitchen and a garden hose in the yard are quite sufficient) but not seat belts. NHTSA data makes a great case for how seat belts (and the later introduction of shoulder belts) have reduced injuries and, in some cases, saved lives.

    I have two uncles who have retired from careers in law enforcement and both managed to go their entire careers in Ohio and Florida without ever unholstering their sidearms. Your (and their) experiences are, I think the norm. Other nations do not routinely arm their police and seem to do quite well.

    All of this is not to imply that the issue violence is somehow simple and easy to understand. Here in the United States we have a multivarient society with a convoluted history whose complexity demands complex approaches.

    Jeff

  13. smrnda says

    @hyphenman

    On fire extinguishers, for the *inside* of the home one might be worth having in the kitchen as water isn’t necessarily the best choice for an oil-based fire, and the extinguisher is a relatively low-cost low-risk thing to have sitting around. Electrical fires don’t take well to water and though I’d like to hope in a well-wired house that wont’ be an issue, the very tiny $ of the fire extinguisher doesn’t leave me feeling like a chump. If the pile of brush in my back lawn set on fire, the hose will be fine. Inside the house I don’t necessarily have access to enough water in most places.

    **overall

    My take on open carry is that it’s less about *carrying* the weapon and becomes more about *brandishing* it. Understandably an issue with concealed carry is not knowing who has a firearm, I understand the historical view of this being somewhat shady ground, but overall, as said before the culture and norms about gun carrying have changed and today, open carry is seen as less threatening.

    On cops and guns, sometimes I’d prefer cops not be armed. A few years ago, under suspicious circumstances, a young Black male was shot in a supposed ‘scuffle’ with cops. I know that on some occasions, the police might be confronted by an unexpectedly armed suspect but I don’t know how prevalent that is; if the stats don’t support a need for the cops to always be armed, then I don’t see why we don’t do what other nations do.

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