The following is by Joshua Grabow in response to Tim McNabb’s post yesterday:
This is a libertarian response to Tim McNabb’s piece on progressivism and 2A rights. I’ve made the point before that I think we should emphasize our similarities and not seek to “purify” the pro-gun community, outside of the basic litmus test that one must actually support gun rights to be considered “pro-gun.” That said, what Mr. McNabb laid out is true, although only to a certain extent. The endgame of liberal progressivism is control. That much is easily ascertained. But then again, so is the endgame of conservatism. So this is my “pox on all your houses” rant. Sort of . . .
Mr. McNabb may be correct that the Kelo decision, Supreme Court packing and a thousand other liberal progressive programs have exceeded the scope of the Constitution and violated the rights of the populace. But so too has the conservative Republican program.
I’ve made this point before as well – Ronald Reagan was a gun-controller. So was Nixon. The Patriot Act is probably the single largest infringement on due-process rights ever enacted, and that was done by “conservatives.” And before someone goes “no-true-Scotsman” on me, yes, conservatives DO have to answer for the actions of their elected officials, just as progressives do. Medicare Part D, the War on Drugs, the militarization of the police forces, the War on Terror. From where I sit on the political aisle, conservatives have precious little moral high ground from which to snipe at progressives about “the Constitution” and “limited government.”
Now note, I am not charging Mr. McNabb personally with supporting all of those insults to common decency and freedom. I’m merely pointing out that it is hypocritical to foist the entire political agenda of the left on everyone who might support parts of it. Both sides have good and bad points. I find liberals (generally) much better on due-process rights and legal matters in general. I like conservatives better on gun rights and foreign policy. Liberals are awful on economics and conservatives are neanderthal on social issues. It all leaves me solidly on the fence when election time rolls around.
But what should be the goal here at TTAG be in the gun community? I’ll tell you what my goal is. To foster the cross-pollination of ideas between conservatives and liberals in the hopes that the worst of each can be moderated and the best of each can be accentuated. I see points of hope all around me. Conservatives are learning that the police are not the answer to everything and I’m seeing erosion on the support for the drug war. Liberals must confront the anti-gun bias of their side and either defend it or switch allegiance.
I want this process to continue and I find our cause ill-served by Mr. McNabb’s post. I understand the emotion that motivated it, but I think some serious introspection might have alleviated the need to break out the torches. More even than the substantive arguments that he makes, the rhetoric used is not going to foster a “big tent” approach to gun rights.
Mr. McNabb, I disagree with you. I disagree with your arguments, and I disagree with your tone. And to all the commentators who piled on, your additions were in some cases actually worse. It’s one thing for a guy to write an editorial. Hell, we let mikeb302000 post around here and he most definitely fails the basic gun-support test. It’s another for the community here as a whole to castigate one half the political spectrum.
At the risk of an irony overload, I’ll quote scripture: “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” If that’s too vague, let me be more specific. Let he who has never voted for anyone who reduced freedom in this nation write the first editorial against one political movement. And no, not voting doesn’t count. We’ve all done it if we’ve voted in more than an election or two. So let’s set our own houses in order before carrying the battle into the gun community.