Oh, please do not misunderstand! We are all terribly impressed. It is so very patriotic of you to show off your little popper! Are you in a gang? Are you a drug dealer? Are you going to shoot some scary terrorists, Mr. pallid paranoid Constitution-misquoting videogame-addicted guy? Protect all of us here in the casual neighborhood coffee shop from those crazy liberals and their health care reform and organic pretzels? Thank you so much! But really, I think weâ€™ll be OK without your little display. Enjoy your frappucino, wonâ€™t you?
Anyone who’s read this blog has known that I have not been all that supportive of open carry activism, but I find it amazing that a guy like Mark Morford who doesn’t like people shoving their Second Amendment rights in his face, but oh, he has no problems shoving this in the face of San Franciscans (NSFW, don’t say I didn’t warn you), as evidenced by this passage:
That’s right, it’s S&M for charity. It’s S&M for hope and health and progress. Keep your bake sale and your car wash and your telemarketing scams. You want to raise some cash for a cause? Bend over in your buttless leather chaps in a charity spanking booth and let a large hairy sweaty grinning man slap your ass with a leather paddle until it’s the color of a tomato in summer. And sing while he does it. And hand out flowers. And condoms. And smile at the over 300,000 passersby.
Mark Morford would like you to think he’s tolerant, but he’s a piece of intolerant garbage. He’s only tolerant of thinks he believes are enlightened, of things he believes should be tolerated. That’s not tolerance, that’s actually no better than the people he derides as “religious conservatives” trying to “force their morality on everyone else.” Maybe the reason Morford hates them so much is because he has seen the enemy, and it is him.
UPDATE: Apparently my point was lost on the Brady folks, who have updated their post to respond to mine. As someone who supports both gun rights and gay rights, I’m equally sympathetic to both the notion that perhaps we do not advance either respective agenda by shoving guns or assless chaps into anyone’s face who is perhaps less than comfortable wither either. What angers me about people like Morford is they deride and sneer at others for practices that they themselves promote in their own favored cause. Even most open carriers have the consistency to argue that the San Francisco gay rights activists’ flamboyant public displays are equally effective and acceptable. Can’t we expect the same courtesy from someone like Morford to perhaps accept that maybe some gun rights activists are as enthusiastic, and perhaps misguided, as those who would wear assess chaps Â for a public flogging at a gay pride fair, believing that they are advancing their cause? If one is OK, so is the other. And one doesn’t have to believe in either banning homosexuality in public or banning guns in public to accept that some people will take it farther than is wise. Morford doesn’t offer us that courtesy, or even accept that we’re honest citizens with legitimate grievances and concerns. Does the Brady Campaign agree with that?
UPDATE2: I guess since we’re both snowed in, it’s a virtual snowball fight with the Brady folk.
Being concerned about lethal weaponry in the hands of people with no law enforcement training inside a coffee shop patronized by families with kids is simply not in the same universe as outlandish behavior at a â€œgay pride fairâ€. They arenâ€™t even remotely comparable.
This is really the heart of the pro-carry/anti-carry debate, and where we’ll find no common ground. They defend Morford’s dichotomy by rejecting the comparison to gay rights altogether. I would not argue that the respective causes are precisely similar, but I think most ordinary folks with children would probably not agree that no one is harmed by seeing one man whip another man with assless chaps. Certainly there are many that would rather their child see an openly holstered firearm carried by someone who is not law enforcement. Which act would you rather explain to a young child?
But we’ll find no agreement, because they believe the mere act of carrying a firearm is dangerous, unless you have some magical “law enforcement training” which will naturally make the gun not dangerous. We do not believe the act of carrying a firearm to be inherently dangerous, because a holstered firearm (and unloaded in the case of these California activists) is not a dangerous item. Nearly all other potentially dangerous acts involving firearms in public are crimes which people can be punished for, save for self-defense, and if it comes to that in a public place like Starbucks, you’re probably going to be glad someone was there with a gun, whether they have magical “law enforcement training” or not.