Whenever I post something on my page concerning guns, two things inevitably happen. First, if I mention that I am a gun owner, some liberals get upset that someone on the left would have the nerve to own guns. Second, I get swarmed by people who make remarks about how President Obama is going to come for our guns, that I’m a “Commie” and that I hate the Constitution, etc.
It would seem as if some gun groups have people who scour Facebook and the rest of the Internet simply looking for anything that portrays guns in a negative light, and then verbally abuse or even cyberstalk anyone who disagrees with them.
Don’t believe me? Ask my friend Chad R. MacDonald who found himself in the cross hairs (no pun intended) of Mark Kessler, a former police chief and militia founder who despises President Obama and liberals, apparently for posting an article that was critical of the NRA. Despite the fact that President Obama has enacted zero gun restrictions, gun fanatics who oppose things as simple as barring domestic abusers from owning firearms are still convinced that any day now, he’s going to send the military or the United Nations door to door to confiscate their guns.
The reason they believe in such goofy ideas is partly because they listen to folks like Larry Pratt, the executive director of Gun Owners of America. Wayne LaPierre and other gun lobbyists serve up a constant campaign of fear and paranoia which is designed to keep people angry, afraid, and buying the products they push – as well as voting for the politicians they endorse. One of the usual tricks is comparing President Obama to Adolf Hitler, and Larry Pratt did just that on a radio show back in January.
Via Right Wing Watch:
Back in January, Pratt appeared on the far-right radio show “Voices of Global Freedom,” hosted by a man who goes by Roy “Backpack Baron” and his friend “Yoda,” where he spoke for an hour about the danger of President Obama taking away Americans’ guns. “Yoda” questioned Pratt as to how he sees gun regulation “tying in with [Obama’s] brazen support, with Al Sharpton and others, despite the cop ambush in New York and Vegas and elsewhere, he’s brazenly supporting this black race war. How, if at all, does this tie into our guns?”
Pratt responded that said race war is an idea “right out of Saul Alinsky,” whom he called Obama’s “intellectual mentor.” He argued Obama is following Alinsky’s “idea that you create a crisis so that you can so disorient society so that it begins to collapse.”
“Yoda” went on to argue that Obama, like Vladimir Lenin, believes “the best way to confiscate guns is a thorough comprehensive registration.”
Pratt took this argument one step further, stating that historically “it’s not just Lenin” who used gun registration laws to disenfranchise citizens, but “it’s pretty much anybody that has ever gone after the people’s guns…Hitler built on the Weimar German registration of firearms and went after the Jews first…And that’s pretty typical of how these elitist governments operate. And it becomes dangerous when they have a very aggressive anti-this or that group type of ideology. Lenin was against the middle class farmers beginning in Ukraine. Hitler was against the Jews.” (Source)
Larry Pratt isn’t alone in using this kind of hyperbolic and irresponsible rhetoric, but I find his remarks especially bizarre considering the fact that he’s long been tied to the militia movement and Gun Owners of America is even more radical than the NRA. The people that he represents and rubs elbows with aren’t your average guy who owns an AR-15 because he thinks it will make liberals mad, these are members of the KKK, right-wing radicals and even Neo-Nazis.
Yes, someone who pals around with real life Neo-Nazis actually has the nerve to invoke Godwin’s Law, even though he was publicly embarrassed and forced to resign from Pat Buchanan’s presidential campaign back in 1996 for attending one of these far-right rallies where he was a speaker.
In 1996, Pratt was forced to resign as co-chairman of Patrick J. Buchanan’s presidential campaign when it was publicized that he had been a speaker at the 1992 Gathering of Christian Men in Estes Park, Colo., where he rubbed shoulders with neo-Nazis, Klansmen, adherents of the anti-Semitic Christian Identity theology, and other radicals. The gathering was held to formulate a response to the Ruby Ridge standoff in northern Idaho earlier that year between federal agents and white supremacist Randy Weaver; a U.S. marshal and white supremacist Randy Weaver’s wife and son were killed during that 11-day mountaintop confrontation. The gathering was organized by the late Pete Peters, a pastor of Christian Identity, which posits that Jews are biological descendants of Satan and people of color are subhuman. Among the 160 Estes Park attendees were Aryan Nations leader Richard G. Butler and former Aryan “ambassador” and Ku Klux Klan leader Louis Beam. Many analysts see the Estes Park meeting as critical to the formulation of the militia, or “Patriot,” movement that would explode nationally in 1994. (Source)
Yet, despite his documented ties to hate groups and bizarre conspiracy ideas, media outlets continue to go to him as some sort of expert on gun issues. Unlike Wayne LaPierre, I think Larry Pratt honestly believes in his warped sense of reality and interpretation of the 2nd Amendment. It would be nice if conservative gun owners woke up to the fact that they’re being used by the NRA and Gun Owners of America, and that they’re being bamboozled by someone who seems to sympathize with Neo-Nazi beliefs. I won’t hold my breath on that one though.
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