TTAG thoroughly debunked an Australian “study” linking American gun ownership with racism. But we’re not stupid. Once flawed stats that demean, diminish or defame American gun owners hit the ‘net the civilian disarmament industry’s all over it like a cheap suit. Case in point: Elie Mystal over at abovethelaw.com. Not only does the Harvard grad turned litigator turned self-professed “online provocateur” take the Ozzie study at face value—and then some—he returns to the convoluted argument that the Second Amendment was created by racists for racists . . .
There’s an argument that the Second Amendment itself was adopted to defend slavery. Please note: I don’t agree with this argument. I think the Second Amendment was adopted because we’d just fought a war that we couldn’t have won without the martial powers of citizens militias. That’s why “A well regulated Militia” is right in the text of the Amendment (a phrase modern gun nuts are quick to gloss over). But it’s clear that widespread gun ownership helped white plantation owners keep control of their slaves. And the right to bear arms was certainly useful when it came time to “settle” additional territory away from the people who were already living there. Gun rights, who has them, and who does not, are inextricably tied to our history of racial oppression.
That’s a whole lot of fail in one paragraph, including ye olde misinterpretation of the Second Amendment’s prefatory clause (all of the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights are individual rights). And the ensuing exactly-ass-backwards idea that gun rights helped slave holders defend the practice—rather than facing the fact that gun control was key to the economic and political disenfranchisement, rape, torture, mutilation and murder of African Americans.
But it’s Mystal’s dissembling I find most egregious. “I don’t agree with this argument” he demurs while promoting and, ultimately, approving the argument (including a link to truthout.com‘s essay on the subject). Civilian disarmament proponents who cloak themselves in the mantle of intellectual discourse—even as they use every trick in the book to avoid its rigor—are more than hypocrites and liars. They are propagandists bent on our destruction.
Let’s not forget that racists are often quite stupid, and stupid people are the ones most resistant to facts about how gun ownership leads to homicide instead of preventing it. Stupid racists are least likely to understand (or care) how “stand your ground” laws are simply a way for whites to justify the killing of black people. Most of the best arguments in favor of gun control are lost on the very kinds of racist people who own guns.
So people who seek to defend and extend their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms are too stupid to realize that they’re racists. Stupid racists. Oh and any black man who supports firearms freedom (i.e. Colion Noir) is an Uncle Tom. Or worse.
The study focused on white gun ownership, but I’d bet that if you looked at black gun ownership, you’d find a similar pattern: the more racist black people are (whether it’s racism towards white people, other races, or even black-on-black racism), the more likely they are to own a gun.
Mystal’s bio page says he’s “written editorials for the New York Daily News and the New York Times, and he has appeared on both MSNBC and Fox News without having to lie about his politics to either news organization.” For some reason, I find that last bit particularly frightening. And it has nothing whatsoever to do with the color of Mr. Mystal’s skin.