By T.S. Swanky, an imaginary, confused conservative
Civil liberties? Let’s just call them “liberal liberties” from now on.
I was barely recovered from the shockingly disturbing news that President Trump and Steve Bannon were parting ways, when I read that the ACLU, which had bravely stood up for the rights of racists to express themselves in Charlottesville, VA, has now decided that it won’t represent racist haters if the haters are swaggering around with guns.
Hey, guns don’t hate people–people do! Just because you are yelling hateful, bigoted, angry things at people in public does not mean that you intend to shoot them, does it? And whose to say, anyway, that a bullet can’t be considered a form of speech? If money can be speech (thank you Supreme Court!) why can’t the inanimate objects of weapons also be speech protected by the First Amendment and the Second Amendment?
If it wasn’t for muskets and cannons, would we even have a Constitution?
All those protesters that carry those handwritten signs– some of those signs are big enough to hurt someone if used as weapons. And I saw a photograph of somebody about to throw a heavy metal newspaper dispenser at some racist. The news may be fake, but it can hurt if hurled. Is the ACLU not going to defend newspapers now?
Where will it end? Even old Confederate statues are being torn down which is if you think about it a violation of historical free speech rights. If contemporary hate groups have a right to speak their minds, why shouldn’t historical hate groups–like the Confederacy– have a First Amendment right to honor old military racists?
I’m no racist, but who is going to stand up for all our militias that just want to be heard and feared, to carry really big and powerful weapons when they stage public confrontations against the sort of people they hate? Surely the Founding Fathers did not intend to limit armed speech in this way.
What’s next? Outlawing war?
Editor’s Note– Here’s a link to a NY Times editorial which addresses the same issue (carrying guns at political protests) in a much more astute, less confused manner. A portion of it follows:
“The critical question is how to protect peoples’ free speech in the presence of armed opponents. The gun lobby has worked to pass laws in Virginia and other states to prevent local governments from passing restrictions on open carry. But legal researchers point to elements in state laws and Supreme Court decisions saying that the right to bear arms in public is not absolute and must stop short of inducing fear in others. No help should be expected, of course, from President Trump, who was the National Rifle Association’s candidate last year. Ideally, the president should be the first to call for a ban on gun toting at public forums and tighter regulations of the adapted battlefield rifles that the gun industry markets to macho civilians.”