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#HypocriteHillary Is A Stupid Hashtag

To those who think #HypocriteHillary is a good argument:

A gun control advocate with private security is no more a hypocrite than a highway patrol officer who punishes someone for walking on the freeway. If the guy walking on the freeway said, “Hey, man, I can’t afford a car and you can, you’re being a hypocrite”, the officer would respond, “That sucks, but what you’re doing is still dangerous and illegal. You’re exposing yourself and others to risk”.

To allege that someone is a hypocrite, you have to actually demonstrate that they’re violating their own maxim. That means you actually have to understand what that maxim is, which often escapes the hardline 2nd Amendment advocates, since their position is fundamentally based on an unreasonable concept of the 2nd Amendment as a super-right that goes beyond any other Constitutionally-guaranteed liberty.

Hillary is not saying, “No one can be safe”. She is saying, “If you do something to be safe, it must be both within the confines of the law and not something that irresponsibly makes others less safe”. Her private security, which she pays for herself, does not violate that maxim. Her bodyguards and security are properly trained and comply with the law. The open-carry morons who routinely violate basic gun safety and often the law itself emphatically do not meet those criteria. In a country where police themselves are often breaking basic gun safety rules, there’s a clear crisis of poor training that has to be addressed.

Absolutely no gun control advocate says that guns will simply not exist anymore. They assert that guns should be used by those who have an appropriate license and training to use it. Some, like myself, are in favor of private citizens having a reasonable access to such licenses. Others would want stricter rules, including some who want something like Australia’s gun ban (which still allows licensed people to own guns). The question is, “Should a gun be more like a car, a deadly device that is allowed to be used by most citizens after having demonstrated competence in its use within fairly strict regulations for use and purchase and exchange, or more like explosives, something that requires a more specialized permit”? Remember: The gun extremists routinely want guns to have less regulated than going out to fish.

And remember: Hillary’s bodyguards, and most bodyguards, are not carrying assault rifles openly. They usually have concealed handguns. That’s in addition to usually having conflict escalation training, martial arts training, and often a military or law enforcement background. Many have a license. I’m not at all intimidated by someone in a suit with an earpiece who worked for the FBI for five years. I am intimidated by a chucklehead in camo openly carrying a weapon that can fire more than a hundred rounds in a minute (yes, even gun rights advocates routinely admit that an unmodified AR-15 can fire a hundred rounds 5.56x45mm NATO rounds or similar rounds). Yes, many open carry advocates are perfectly reasonable and follow the law. And that would remain true even in a world where they had to be properly licensed. Without licensing, though, there’s no screening for the person who may open carry in a playground.

So, no, there’s no hypocrisy here. Even affluent gun control advocates like Hillary are indicating that they want qualified people with appropriate training and licensing to have weapons. If you’re less affluent, no one is going to deny you a home security system, reinforcements to your home, or other ways of improving your safety. And the fact is some of the poorest communities are some of the most strident against unrestricted guns. It’s a great irony of the gun debate that middle-class and working-class white folks in relatively safe suburbs and rural areas are insisting on their right to have guns and posing as being so poor compared to those like Hillary, while the truly poor and marginalized have very loud leadership going against unrestricted guns. Unrestricted gun ownership seems fine until one considers how often guns are stolen, sold illegally by a family member (whether it’s the father who bought the gun selling it to make some quick cash after being laid off or a kid looking to make some quick money), or otherwise manage to end up in the black market. The fact is that highly racialized white desires to feel safe end up leading to the victimization of black and Hispanic people, especially children.

Gun rights people: Stop floating this argument. It makes you look spectacularly dishonest and it shows that you are willfully ignoring the actual issues being discussed.

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