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Seattle rally (courtesy

“Gun control advocates don’t just attack support for guns; they attack conservative, Republican, rural and religious values. Second Amendment advocates don’t just attack gun control advocates; they attack liberal, Democratic, urban and secular values. The gun control argument gets portrayed as the struggle against Bible-thumping, gay-bashing, NASCAR-watching hicks, and the gun rights argument gets portrayed as a struggle against godless, elitist, kale-chewing socialists.” – Ken White in ‘Culture bundling’ and other obstacles to a real gun control debate [via]

[h/t SA]

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  1. Kale? Really?

    This is just me, but I tend to see it as control-freak vs leave-people-alone.

    I also tend to think the gun control side dives into the “secondaries” like religion, tolerance and sexual preferences earlier in the debate. Once you go there most people on either side of the argument will defend and counterattack, though.

    • I make a killer Kale Soup. That one comment offended me! And as you know, if a single soul is offended he must be recognized and catered to.

    • True but I wonder which is which. The Democrats want to tell me I can’t own a gun, but the Republicans want to tell me who I can and can’t marry, what I can and can’t put in my own body, and dictate whether my wife and daughters should have a baby. The Democrats hate the 2nd amendment but the Republicans hate the 4th. Doesn’t really seem like anyone is truly interested in protecting the Constitution and personal liberty.

      • …which rather neatly sums up a lot of my issues with both parties.

        Sometimes I think that in a back room somewhere, a bunch of old guys with cigars drew little pieces of paper with “issues” and positions on them. Those little pieces of paper then became the party planks. Because frankly no other explanation I’ve heard makes sense as to how the parties took the stands they now hold.

        • George Carlin once said that Republicans should love gay people, as they are the one demographic guaranteed to never need an abortion 🙂

      • And that is a fairly substantial issue for gun rights. People will want to vote for pols that offer more of they want, there just not one issue. The two major parties dominate the situation, so votes for a libertarian are functionally wasted. And both of the major parties are in the business of government, so neither wants less government (which is truly what most people want). It is a “who sucks less” situation, which can be kind of terrifying. Do you vote for the gun-friendly one who opposes most everything else you believe in, or do you vote for the anti-gunner hoping that the rest of the government will keep our rights intact?

        • It’s looking like a choice between the gun friendly fascist and the gun hating fascist. And I have my doubts about the gun friendly fascist remembering that he is the gun friendly fascist when it counts later on after the primary.

        • @Wiregrass: So, you think that if they disarmed you, the Democrat Party would actually be very cool on all the other stuff? There is a word for folks like you: deluded.

        • In the beginning of our country, one of the initial restrictions regarding voting required that you be a land owner (also male and white). I believe that this was promulgated to prevent people from voting themselves handouts, while some changes have been made to better represent the population as a whole, maybe it’s time to go back to back to some form of voting rights that require you to at least be a contributor to society (minus the male and white requirement) and not just voting for bread and circuses as a lot of our politicians seem to think we want.

        • @HP You read that into my words, that’s not what I said at all, at least not what I meant. All I am saying is all these people who think Trump is the answer because he tells them what they want to hear are going to be in for a surprise eventually. I don’t see Trump vs. Hillary as any choice at all.

      • Pretty much this exactly. Both parties have things I support, and both parties have things I abhor. Registered as an independent and constantly hoping [in vain] for a politician that’s the best of both worlds. American politics are a mess.

      • CB, you think Democrats want to legalize drugs, and Republicans want to decide whether or not people get pregnant? What planet are you talking about?

      • The Democrats hate the 2nd amendment but the Republicans hate the 4th.
        Donkeycraps actually hate the entire Bill Of Rights.
        Retardocraps just cave to the Donkeycraps for Kabuki Theater.

      • This. My support of gun rights and decision to own firearms comes from a desire to have the best available tools to defend myself if necessary. I already had the misfortune of having to use a firearm to defend myself. I fully understand anyone’s desire to be able to protect themselves. Many proposals for “common sense” gun control are completely uninformed and unlikely to have any effect whatsoever on reducing “gun violence,” and it angers me when I see people who I otherwise consider informed and intelligent just completely drop the ball. Unfortunately, I so abhor most policies on the right that I often end up voting for candidates who want to restrict gun rights (ex: Obama, though honestly he has yet to do anything significant but that might be about to change). Gun rights are simply not important enough to warrant single-issue voting (to me). I’m not scared of needing my FNAR to fight off government thugs and, statistically speaking, I’m not likely to need my guns to protect me, even though I’ve personally been involved in a DGU. It was an incredibly rare and unlikely event. If I was absolutely forced to choose between domestic policies of the right and guns or domestic policies of the left with no guns, I’d choose the latter. Sanders right now is my best hope for a leftist who isn’t completely irrational about guns. It does often boil down to left v right political fight for gun rights and this country, but it doesn’t have to be. Everyone should be behind a personal right to self defense and everyone should be willing to look at evidence suggesting virtually all gun control wouldn’t achieve the stated goals, but if we’re forced into that false dichotomy along political lines, I’d still have to vote left.

    • Almost every Republican I know of (both personally and politicians / pundits) are definitely NOT “leave it alone” types and are just as much of control freaks as Democrats. Republicans want to control your language, clothing, who you have sex with, whether or not you get a choice in having kids, if you die with dignity, what books / movies / games you can have, etc.

      • You’re so full of crap the world probably has a very brown tint.

        Every Leftist university is competing with each other on who can come up with the most Orwellian sex contract.

        They dived into sex contracts because they got tired of writing and implementing all their un-constitutional speech codes.

        The university campus is a great example of the inherent Fascism of Leftism when they have free control of power.

    • I had just come to that same conclusion and saw your comment. Bravo sir! Let me make my way, I don’t plan on cozying up to your ideals, so leave me and mine the hell alone.

      And to Art out West, I heartily agree on that kale soup recipe. It’s a fine winter staple in my book.

  2. “Second Amendment advocates don’t just attack gun control advocates; they attack liberal, Democratic, urban and secular values.”

    You forgot BS media that pot-stirs so they can get paid by communists.

    • “The media” is a business. They pot stir because their motive is profit, not truth. The more controversial the better to drive revenue. The Jeffersonian view of media as a check to power has NEVER been realistic. Sometimes they inadvertently end up serving that function, but it is certainly not their purpose.

  3. Well I’m not a bible thumper, I like kale, gay peeps are cool. Oh and the 2nd Amendment shall not be infringed! Guess I’m a nobody.

    • Me, too. And other than guns politically I’m something of a moderate, embracing positions associated with both the left and the right. As a human being and not a gun nut caricature straw-man, I’m ignored.

      • Same here. A suburban white half Jew, half Catholic who’s pro-gay, pro-choice, pro-pot, and pro-gun. I’ve been a registered democrat for years but I got so tired of them and changed my registry to independent (I’m not a big fan of the GOP either).

        • But you are a fan of murdering unborn babies, harvesting their organs for profit, and then throwing what’s left of their tiny bodies into landfills all the while simultaneously patting yourself on the back for being so “compassionate”. Got it.

        • There are many of us gun rights advocates like that, but you are right, we are left out because we don’t make much noise. I read the article and it makes sense. Not all gun control advocates are Whole Foods shopping soy milk drinkers. Look at Chris Christie or Mooney.

          I am one of those Atheist left leaning libertarians that was a registered Dem for years. Like you, I am pro-freedom, as long as you aren’t hurting anyone.

        • It boggles my mind that the very same political-social group that supports the murder of 50 million+ innocent lives can turn immediately and demonize me for wanting to protect my own. Inconceivable.

          So here it is: “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.” All other issues are secondary. You don’t like that, amend or repeal it, and good luck with that.

          The only thing that the comments to this post prove is that no political group(ing) can be stereotyped by the most rabid of its members, including The People of the Gun. If you are a Liberal Democrat I don’t care how much you claim to support the Second Amendment because you will most likely throw it under the bus if it conflicts with electing yet another Liberal Progressive Democrat who will do everything they can to destroy the Second Amendment.

          And stop trying to pretend that fascism is a right-wing phenomenon. It was born with American Progressives and nurtured by Italian Socialists, German Nazis and Soviet Communists. The last seven years have seen more fascism thrust upon us by Democrats than almost any other time in the history of this country. Here is the CONCISE definition of fascism:

          “We have decided what is BEST for you. If you know what is good for you then you will NOT oppose us.”

          Do the research and then deal with the truth – every socialist utopia ever conceived or attempted at some point MUST rely on fascism to retain power and this usually requires the violent suppression of opposition groups and individuals, hence their burning desire for civilian disarmament.

        • “And stop trying to pretend that fascism is a right-wing phenomenon.”

          I understand what you are saying. Fascism is a form of socialism and is definitely not related to “right-wing” politics which embraces market capitalism and not socialism. In terms of accuracy, however, fascism is the “right-wing” of the LEFT WING in that its socialism model allows private property to remain in private hands while the state controls the means of production. Italian Fascists saw themselves as protecting workers from exploitation by forming a partnership between the state and oligarchs. Oligarchs made money while the state’s control of the mean of productions protected workers from exploitation. Progressives in FDR’s administration were much enamored of Italian Fascism.

        • Re: charles. You are laughably misinformed. Actually, I take that back. It’s not funny at all, because that rhetoric is partially responsible for the f$#ktards that go shoot up planned parenthood.

  4. Well they got half of it right, how the anti’s try to portray gun owners.

    There is s greater disconnect between the old school failed liberal East and West Coast (plus Chiraq) and the rest of the nation in terms of values, culture and baseline views of the roles of the individual and government.

    • It’s completely correct.

      Our two party system breeds this polarization. Having only two extreme parties keeps them in control. Imagine a third, more reasonable party, it would remove the majority of the power from RNC and DNC.

      Politicians WANT us to completely fall within their party lines in all subjects. Their ad hominem attacks only further this goal.

  5. Well I’m a tree hugging, bible thumping , hummus eating, libertarian that believes that since G-d give us the free will to follow the laws of the universe, ie the laws of G-d, or not, who am I to force others to follow my beliefs by force of law?

    The only laws on the books should be based on unprovoked physical violence against others, (which includes abortion)
    Orherwise, if it’s between consenting adults, it’s nobodies business.

    Since both Democrats and Republicans use government to force, at gun point, their pet tyrannies on the people, they are both the two sides of the same coin of tyranny. Facism/Communism- both use the threat of and actual government violence to keep, us, the people, in subjugation.

    Right now, the progressives are dominant in academia, the media and popular culture. But if the Republicans were in a more dominant position, they would be just as tyrannical and brutal.

    • … since G-d give us the free will to follow the laws of the universe, ie the laws of G-d, or not, who am I to force others to follow my beliefs by force of law?

      Hmm. That is an interesting perspective which corresponds with the centuries-old Common Law standard to do whatever we want as long as we do not harm other people.

      • I use the easy method of saying what does a good parent do when their children moves out of the house?

        Does a good parent dictate how their child should live, think and do once they are on their own? Of course not! That would make them the ultimate tyrant!

        What if that parent was a senator that decided to use the law to dictate to their child, ie young adult, must wear a helmet when riding a motor cycle? as an example.

        It what fundumental way does the parent ie senator, change from the ultimate tyrant into a “concerned” representative only interested in the welfare of their constituents? They don’t.

        So just look at any law that some “public servant” wants to pass for the “general welfare” , applied as a parent on thier self-supporting child, and almost all such laws will be shown for what they are. A parent being a sick and twisted control freak unwilling to allow their children to learn and grow in their life experience without mommies and daddies “guidance”.

        This is why G-d is the best loving parent, we are totally free to follow his laws or not, and it is on us, if we fall because we violate those laws.

        • And that is what the first three hundred years of Christianity was based upon. There was no Roman law to make christians follow their universal law. Quite the contrary, they faced being fed to lions by voluntarily following the laws of G-d.

          It was not until Christianity was hijacked by the failing Roman empire that Christianity became just another tool for a tyrant to lead in mass slaughter with a bunch of “useful idiots”. supporting him.

          Now, for the last hundred years, it’s mostly been the athiests/agnostics that are communists/marxists/socialists that are the “useful idiots” in the support of mass murder .

          At last, Christianity has the chance to return to it’s roots as a voluntary belief system, unlike the current crop of political correctobots.

    • Please, by all means, provide me some sort of proof of the Republican Party using the force of firearms to make someone pray to God or perform other worship items associated with Christianity. Of course, you won’t be able to do that because that is just hype. I live in “flyover country” where there are a lot of churches. Though I have my own religious beliefs, not one person where I live has ever attempted to force me to go to one of their churches, and these are some church-going folks around here. That isn’t what the problem with the Republican Party is in the very least.

      • True, Except that Heart Land Patriot, those Republicans will force their version of christian morality by imprisoning an adult for voluntarily putting a plant residue called Marijuana in their body that has killed exactly zero people in tbe last year, unlike the legal plant residue called tobacco which has killed hundreds of thousands or the by product of yeast called alcohol which has killed ten’s of thousands in a year.

        The level of hypocrisy to allow such a violation of justice is unimaginable.

  6. Odd, I’m libertarian if anything, not religious, I live in a city, and here I thought this was all about freedom from government intrusion and control.

    • Yes, but that strays from the Playbook whereby all discussion must remain as polarized and superficial as possible so that we don’t actually connect at a human level and resolve that ignorance problem that Stu up there pointed out.

    • You are the one who is correct. The news media are the ones who obfuscate this issue, on purpose, to drum up support for gun control, which is actually people control.

  7. One of the things about TTAG I like is you don’t default to this, though I do think we are all guilty of this at times.

    I mean, we are in a war of words, so it makes sense to delineate sides, you just have to be careful where you draw the lines.

  8. Wow–I really dunno which side of the divide the quoted author falls on (which is kind of a pleasant surprise)–but he really smacked that whole “assault weapons” garbage down. Seems to be a growing trend, even among the grabbers.

    • Atheist, anarchist, tree hugging, dog loving, gun loving old man. Hate the govment, the dems, the repubs , right wingers, left wingers and a lot of other stuff. Rather spend a day with any old flea bitten dog than 99.9% of the humans I know. And the reverse is also probably true.

  9. Guy holding the sign looks like he’s been riding the short bus his entire life.
    And what is an “assault rifle” exactly? Bet antis can’t tell you!

    • To me, that was the most salient point of the whole article–Grabbers trying to ban “assault weapons” when they don’t even know what one is. That “pit bull” analogy was golden.

  10. Count me as another urban gardening, leaving other people alone, chicken raising, kale growing (amongst other produce), anti-heterosexist, anti-hetero normative, anti-racist, pro liberty, anti-hierarchical, anti-authoritarian, anti-statist, pro-bill of rights, pro second amendment, metro dwelling, bicycle riding, pistol packing, rifle bearing, anti-violence anarchist/libertarian that is an advocate of removing hierarchy and illegitimate authority to the greatest extent possible. Redefining our personal, social and economic relationships and power dynamics one person at time in terms of mutual aid, free association, liberty, horizontalism, solidarity and all the other cliche trappings… that’s what I’m about. Was that illustrative and post modern enough? I sure hope so. Under the paving stones… the beach!

  11. Why is the Second Amendment the only part of the Bill of Rights that is subject to debate? Why should ANY part of the Bill of Rights EVER be the subject of debate?

    • Maybe because the news media don’t make it a national issue every time someone has his house searched without a warrant, or is subjected to a government-initiated “civil forfeiture” without the availability of counsel, or is expelled from a public school for a speech code violation. The debate is out there, it just isn’t as “public’ as guns.

  12. I fondly remember listening to the radio and a Republican party operative was talking about who they were targeting to get out the vote. He said they were focusing their efforts based on buying habits, because if you were driving a Volvo and sipping your late you probably weren’t voting republican anyway.
    I found it odd as I was driving my Volvo station wagon, drinking my late and eating my breakfast of organic apples and goat cheese. I was driving to work, for Republican Governor Rick Perry, and working for several other Republican office holders and candidates. I carried a Ruger P90 and a SW J frame at the time, and that Volvo station wagon was carrying a rifle and a shotgun in the back.
    Not so shocking that Republicans lost that national election. Many of the old line party members have still not learned this lesson.

  13. As one of those “white Hispanics”, I can assure y’all, my Hispanic half detests my Caucasian half’s race and bigotry driven affinity for guns. And, my Caucasian half wishes my Hispanic half would just go home quit taking my job.

    God, I hate myself so much….

  14. I am an alien fifth columnist, hate only astronauts, watch fencing not NASCAR, and hide from God, I guess I don’t fit the narrative either.

  15. There is no “Culture bundling” nor other nebulous “obstacles to a real gun control debate”.

    The explanation is simple:

    People who worship the Almighty State as their god naturally reject Judeo-Christian beliefs and vice versa.

    People who worship the Almighty State naturally believe that their god, the Almighty State, is infallible and will provide everything for them, including food, shelter, clothing, and security. People who subscribe to Judeo-Christian principles naturally reject the notion that the State is Almighty and infallible and instead look to themselves to provide food, shelter, clothing, and security.

    By extension people who worship the Almighty State have no personal responsibility since the Almighty State is responsible for everything, and thus supplicants of the Almighty State always expect someone else to do or give-up something. Of course people of the Judeo-Christian world view see things the opposite way.

    In the final analysis the fundamental problem is that feelings are king for gun-grabbers: History, demonstrable facts, and standards of absolute right/wrong always take a back seat to their feelings. Chaos, anarchy, and destruction are a guaranteed result when feelings rule the day. After all, if I really want something, I can just take it because my gratification is all that matters. Whether or not what I want to take is another person’s property or another person’s body is immaterial … at least that is the case if MY FEELINGS are all that matters.

    • You bundle in your very response. I want to live in a world where I don’t have go lynch people for dumping chemicals in my drinking water, where I don’t have to personally help raise funds to construct a road, where I can be reasonably sure that a posse won’t roll through town and take all of my shit. The state serves those functions. I don’t worship the state. I want the state to support society and have as little say in what people do as possible. Those two things are in direct conflict with each other, and a functional society will necessarily be a balance between state power and individual authority. Both extremes are abhorrent. We’d have gotten nothing done as a species without centralized power and we’d get nothing done with absolute centralized power. I don’t worship sky men, and I certainly don’t worship the mostly pathetic group people responsible for the State or what it represents. I mistrust power, but recognize that I couldn’t possibly be doing scientific research to improve the human condition without the support of strong centralized power. It’s not black and white, and yes, the media absolutely has a financial stake in cultural bundling and meaningless drummed up controversy, which is exactly why the “debate” about anything in this country is so effin pathetic.

  16. The guy makes some good points, though he still reveals his bias pretty clearly. Anyway, at the risk of doing some bundling of my own, the idea of firearms freedom and the right to self-defense comes from an individualist perspective. The idea of gun control comes from a collectivist authoritarian perspective. These are diametrically opposed perspectives from fundamentally incompatible world-views. There is unlikely to be much in the way of common ground.

  17. Personally, I am tired of the stereotyping, generalized condemnations based on false narrative and childish name-calling both sides have engaged in, and I fully plead guilty to having done my share of this cr*p. I believe that the principal concepts of individual freedom, responsibility and self-determination the US was founded upon, and the Constitution designed to protect and enable among Humans, establishes a criteria each person ought to aspire to. It is the antithesis of the tribal mindset that has created conflict among Humans for thousands of years.
    Unfortunately, a lot of people in this country and around the World have not gotten the message. In the US it looks like many people are in retrogression. We have got to change that direction.

  18. The cultural bundling happens squarely on their side of the fence because they are operating from a position of complete and utter ignorance. They wish to debate the granularities of a topic of which they know nothing about, so they resort to non-sensical hysterical bleating at their best and ad-hominem attacks coupled with projection at their worst.

    This isn’t so much a culture war as it is a war of two differing points of view. On one side you have the belief that good people who are willing can prevent bad things from happening through direct action. On the other you have the desire to live life in a padded room, and if only we can add enough padding to that room then certainly no one would ever get hurt. Therein lies the problem.

    • ….they are operating from a position of complete and utter ignorance. They wish to debate the granularities of a topic of which they know nothing about, so they resort to non-sensical hysterical bleating at their best and ad-hominem attacks coupled with projection at their worst.

      Love it. Stolen. Thank you. 🙂

  19. So freedom snatching liberal mob smears and caricature conservatives, while the pro-freedom conservatives accurately depict the antis’ actions and intentions?

    From this ideological imbalance, this fellow fabricates a mythical equivalence of righteousness? Oh that’s rich!

    It’s like when 95% of economists concur on the demonstrably destructive effects of the minimum wage. Yet, the cable news shows will rustle up one of the intellectually dishonest communist-leaning academics who’s completely at ease ignoring all research and common sense to spread their personal politics. They’ll picture them both, split screen style and bickering, to convey the false message that this issue is genuinely unsettled.

  20. Meh-I don’t fit the stereotype. I’ve been left and now I’m right-not right -wing just RIGHT. I can defend all my beliefs. Black wife, brown kids, Christian,critical of cops, pro-gun,anti-baby murder(but I’m NOT into forcing raped 12 year olds to abort),don’t care if boys couple but I will never call it “marriage”, don’t care if you smoke pot, generally hate government regs.,against our Asian adventures but protect our borders,want Muslims to get saved but support “profiling” and agree with some libertarian philosophy but far from all, support the 2A and CC/open carry with NO mandated training(SEE: INdiana),Constitutional carry with NO fees,etc…And I get pizzed off when azzwholes ASSume because I look like an OFWG(I even got an old man white mustache). Or think I’m a Republican(they are pathetic RINOS in Illinois)…

  21. I just recently got into a “debate” with an acquaintance on FB. I use quotes because there was really no back and forth on facts before he started slinging insults at me and had his online friends pile on. The subject was simple enough – he stated that income inequality in America was “disgusting” and that America “needs full socialism now.”

    I simply asked where does the value exist in a minimum wage job that validates upping the pay on such workers to near $20 an hour, and if this was done, exactly how do I get compensated for the loss of value incurred on my higher hourly wages – which I worked very hard to achieve over the course of many years.

    Of course it didn’t take long until he stated he would be “waiting with his guillotine for people like you when the class war starts.”

    Reporting veiled threats like this to Facebook admins is useless, as the admins agree with these sort of opinions, and will take no action against them.

    This is a person who routinely posts anti-gun junk on his FB page. How is he going to win a class war if those who disagree with him are armed, and he is not? Is he expecting someone to just hand out the guns when the time comes for the so-called “class war” to begin?

    • Is he expecting someone to just hand out the guns when the time comes for the so-called “class war” to begin?

      Why not? He expects everything else handed to him.

  22. I don’t even read that crap anymore. The hoplophobes have become parodies of themselves. If I had time to watch comedy I’d subscribe to comcast (but the local MS-NBC channel does it for free.

  23. “Republican, rural and religious values.”


    “Democratic, urban and secular values”

    I’ve always seen this fundamental divide as the difference between your dependence on the material or the spiritual for one and your independence on the other.


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