Welcome to the gun show

There’s been a lot of media attention around the healthcare town hall meetings and the contentious debate that surround them, but one thing that hasn’t gotten a whole lot of airplay is the accessorizing of some of its protesters.

Times have changed a lot since the Bush years, during which simply showing up to Presidential speech in a homemade anti-Bush T-shirt might get you arrested (and later mollified to the tune of 800 Franklins).  While First Amendment Rights were those at the heart of the Bush-era public assembly fashion debate, in the Obama administration it would seem that firearms are the new black.

Indeed, the Second Amendment seems to be rearing its nickel-plated head at a variety of healthcare town hall meetings, including one in Arizona where a guy showed up with an AR-15 strapped to his back.  (No word on whether this trend is courtesy a new Max Motors “Guns for Clunkers” promotion.)

It turns out that the Arizona assualt rifle incident was staged by a Libertarian talk show, but other folks who showed up in New Hampshire and Arizona with smaller, more fashionable and versatile handguns were apparently there to exercise their Second Amendment Rights.  Or maybe they just attended the Plaxico Burress Institute of Fashion.

Pumping fists is the American way, but the implied threat of pumping lead has activated some conservative organizations to speak out and recommend that folks leave the firearms at home.  (The NRA has been silent on the matter.)  The meetings are already heated and contentious – due in part to the Right’s scripted disruption strategy, which is well-outlined in a detailed Town Hall Playbook – and with a town hall meeting in Washington State canceled due to threats of violence and one in Tampa disrupted by it, throwing guns into the mix may not create the best environment to productively discuss the future of American healthcare.

What the Second Amendment has to do with the healthcare debate is fodder for another debate, though some would argue that it’s entirely relevant given the $100 billion spent in the healthcare system annually treating gunshot wounds.  But perhaps protesters might consider a Bush/Obama hybrid model, and shelve the firearms for T-shirt cannons instead.  There are certainly plenty of anti-Obama T-shirts to go ’round.

  1. What the proposed “healthcare” bill has to do with the Constitution should also be questioned.
    If one questions whether we have a right to lawfully exercise our Second Amendment rights one should also question whether or not we have a right to exercise our First Amendment rights. None of the Amendments should ever be viewed as more important nor valid than any other. You limit one and you provide a precedent to limiting others. I suppose those that wish to limit gun rights are also supporters of those who may wish a return to slavery perhaps.
    Think things through before you waste your time and effort pontificating. You may wake up one morning to find yourself muzzled as to your point of view once you start down the path of favoring one Amendment at the expense of others.
    Oh, and if the townhall gatherings are so “scripted”, one would think the signs all those “right wing zealots” are carrying wouldn’t look so downright cobbled together and homemade. I need to ask my parents what script they and their friends are following too. Silly me, I just thought they were scared of having forced government healthcare rammed down their throats by an extremely Fascist Executive and Legistlative led branches of the government.

  2. If you watch the proper news sources you will see the truth that the ones toting the side and shoulder arms were in fact from the left.

    I saw the video with the man in the white polo shirt one news source they said it was a white man from the right when in fact it was a black man from the left. They showed from the shoulder down and not the individuals total image like the other news source did.

    In the very near future you just might have to carry the guns and tell your family to carry guns because of the revolution that may be imminent if the Obama regime doesn’t slow down with their communist Czars.

  3. The politicians need to be reminded that we the people are in charge of this country. The people bringing guns to the gatherings outside the meetings (not inside) are not only exercising their second amendment rights, but are reminding everybody why the second amendment was written. To protect the citizens from tyrants.

    When the President’s staff starts a website to report citizens who are exercising their first amendment rights, it seems reasonable that some people might suspect tyrannical tendencies.

    “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

  4. Guns are the reason we are free today. Open carry is legal in some states so no laws were broken. I think we must execise our rights..or we lose them. If guns make the establishment nervous…that is good! I support open carry andwish it was the law of the land.

  5. While I am a strong supporter of being able to voice my opinions at a town meeting about whatever concerns me, I believe that shouting, swearing, toting guns, and total disruption completely defeats the purpose of why I’m there. I want people to hear what I’m saying, as opposed to talking about the way I said it. And yes, it is your right to bear arms as protected by the Second Amendment, but if something goes horribly wrong at one of these town hall meetings… say someone grabs your gun and starts shooting it… wouldn’t that just give the ‘progressives’ more opportunities to call us the lunatic fringe? You know it would never be reported correctly. Leave the guns home, and bring an educated mind instead!

  6. Carrying a gun to a town hall or presidential appearance is like shouting “fire” in a crowded theater. It may be technically legal, but it shouldn’t be done. I own firearms, and sell firearm designs on CP, I’m a “gun enthusiast.” But even enthusiasm has its limits…

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