SAF: Will Hate Speech Against Gun Owners Lead to Hate Crimes?


Second Amendment Foundation press release [NB: picture added by TTAG]:

BELLEVUE, WA – Hate speech directed at gun owners and firearms rights groups in the wake of the Connecticut tragedy could lead to hate crimes, the Second Amendment Foundation said today.

SAF said statements made by broadcasters including Piers Morgan and Chris Matthews, as well as comments on social media have contributed to an environment of hate directed against law-abiding Americans who are being demonized for a crime they did not commit . . .

This comes as President Obama has launched an effort that could culminate in an attempt to ban semiautomatic sport-utility rifles and ammunition magazines, and impose other restrictions on gun owners who are not responsible for the actions of an obviously mentally disturbed individual.

“Focusing on the instrumentality of firearms alone to the exclusion of possible other causative factors is doomed to failure and would do an injustice to the memories of the Sandy Hook victims and their families,” said SAF President Joseph Tartaro.

“Of course, we are pleased to see that by adopting a broad task force approach in search of solutions to prevent or reduce the kind of violence that was visited upon Newtown, CT, last week that the president has sought the expertise of several cabinet departments that deal with mental health, educational administration, pharmacology, law enforcement and cultural issues in addition to firearms.”

But SAF cautioned that narrowing the focus to firearms and pushing a ban on popular semiautomatic firearms will only fuel the campaign of hate now underway on cable television and in social media.

For example, Morgan called one national gun rights leader “an unbelievably stupid man,” Matthews suggested gun owners are, ” . . . people on the far-right (who) never lose their passion. Normal people have other interests like their spouses, their lives, their children, and even their generalized politics isn’t driven by one issue.” A university professor in Rhode Island tweeted, “Looks like the National Rifle Association has murdered some children.”

“The remarks become obscene after that,” noted SAF Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb. “We have received some vulgar e-mails from people that want us to vanish for the sake of a civilized world’.

“This kind of rhetoric does not contribute to any rational discussion,” he said. “Vitriol like this only promotes hate, but apparently it’s okay to perpetuate bigotry so long as you are an anti-gunner, and a liberal. If anyone is harmed as a result of this hate campaign, we expect them to be prosecuted under the hate crimes laws.”

“If this hate speech leads to hate crimes,” Gottlieb concluded, “people like Piers Morgan and Chris Matthews will be partly responsible.”


  1. avatar William says:

    “HATE CRIMES”? Why are gun advocates using the same weasel tactics as their hoplophobe opponents? WE ARE BETTER THAN THAT. CUT THE CRAP, PEOPLE!!!

    1. avatar Billy Wardlaw says:

      Agreed. Crime is crime regardless of its motivations. For instance; to say a murder motivated by hate or racism is worse than a murder motivated by some other factor, does nothing to serve the public and diminishes our repugnance of and aversion to murder as a whole. Its PC crap, don’t play into it, you will loose.

    2. avatar mountocean says:

      Agree. Caring if it’s a “hate” crime is as bad as caring if it’s a “love” crime, or “gun” crime, or “pretzel” crime.
      We as a special interest group already know how to deal with crime.

    3. avatar Rokurota says:

      Hate crime laws are written to protect the victimization of people on account of their race, gender, religion, ethnicity, national origin and sometimes sexual orientation. They do not protect a group of people with a common interest or viewpoint, so good luck getting any prosecution on that count.

      If one can prove damages, a suit for defamation of character is more appropriate.

  2. avatar jwm says:

    Hate crimes work best when your intended victims are unarmed. Instead of hate crimes this could lead to a spate of valid DGU’s.

    I’ve never shot a school kid. I’m dipped if I’ll be punished or attacked for the crimes of others. Does that make it plain enough for the intellectualy impaired amongst the anti’s out there.

    And while I don’t own an EBR the guns I do own are more than sufficient for me to stay alive until the first responders show up.

    1. avatar Evan says:

      That would probably be a catch 22(hope I’m using this reference right) situation. If a DGU ocurrs due to these possible “hate crimes” the media will spin it as “innocent protester shot by deranged gun owner.” If one were to act passively they would just say that, “these people cling to there guns, and once again we see that civilians are just too weak to defend themselves even with a gun.”

      Would a DGU be justified? Yes. Would it help the cause of the pro freedom 2nd ammendment supporters?….maybe, but with who all runs the media, I doubt it.

      Like we all know by now the anti’s don’t worry about being rational, they worry about crushing their opposition into dust.

  3. avatar pc_load_letter says:

    Well, I’ve always cautioned against putting pro 2A stickers and such on my vehicle. Here in CA, I could easily see my car keyed or tires punctured. If I were in Texas, I’d probably be more comfortable.

    But violence against gun owners, probably not.


  4. avatar Jesus says:

    Seems like it would be a bad idea to attack a bunch of gun owners.

    1. avatar Roll says:

      +100 Jesus
      My thoughts exactly. I’d rather they not attack me; but ironically if they do guess who is prepared and who isnt?

    2. avatar Billy Wardlaw says:

      It wouldn’t be called and attack, it would be called a martyrdom – and would serve their purpose either way.

      BTW, does anyone want to bet me a $100 that the upcoming legislation will be in someway named after the Sandy Hook tragedy, to pull votes it otherwise would not get. Hell, I’ll give long odds it might be printed on a bloody shirt.

      1. avatar 40&2000 says:

        There is no way it won’t be called the Newtown -safety- anti-violence-something or other bill.

    3. avatar Silver says:

      Since when do bad ideas stop antis?

  5. avatar Rob Drummond says:

    Well to quote/paraphrase a famous movie:

    “they come after me with a knive, I go after them with a gun” They try to send me to the hospital, I will send the to the morgue”

    You get the idea.
    Rob Drummond
    Hillboro, NH

    1. avatar Roll says:

      “Thats the Chicago way!”

  6. avatar Wyatt says:

    It’s important to assert yourself and your rights. Let’s not start chest-thumping, and threatening gun-blazing retribution, though.

    1. avatar Rob Drummond says:

      Not tumping just a fact.
      Someone come after me to do me pain they’ll get it back. Be it at the work place, at night in my home, or on the street. I will not stand by and let someone hurt me regardless of their reasons.

      Only “hate” in it for me is I’d “hate” to have to do it

      Rob Drummond
      Hillsboro, NH

  7. Hate crimes by non-gun owners against gun owners?!?!?!?!

    Haha… reminds me of an LCD experiment I heard of from the 1960’s where they put a cat and a mouse on LCD and the mouse started chasing the cat.

    I can just see myself getting pillow attacked on the way to work.

    I don’t think gun grabbers know what they are getting into. They will not be fleecing sheep. They will be attempting to de-fang and de-claw lions.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      Most hate groups use bombs. I fully expect to see bomb plots against the NRA, SAF, gun stores and ranges. That’s the cowards way.

      Have you already forgotten Obama’s buddy Bill Ayres?

    2. avatar AlphaGeek says:

      So.., you’re more of a CRT guy then? Are you saying that flat-panel TVs and monitors are to blame for this?

      I think you might be on to something with this…

  8. avatar Michael B. says:

    It might. If you’ve been paying attention you’ve probably seen some violent rhetoric coming out of the extreme anti-gun crowd’s mouth across the net.

    Some of these people are the ones who admit they don’t want to own a gun because they feel like they might use it on someone. That tells you everything you need to know about those individuals in particular! They have poor impulse control and are prone to violence.

    1. avatar Swaggie says:

      Shrinks call it “Projection.” “The attribution of one’s own ideas, feelings, or attitudes to other people or to objects…”

  9. avatar Bill says:

    Having been in England when an animal rights group bombed and burned several buildings, I would not discount the possibility. (I can also assure you they were not the type that would like firearms!)

    When a group of people is demonized, it becomes easier to treat them as less then human and thus makes it possible to act against them in ways one normally would not.

    1. avatar Gregolas says:

      Good observation, Bill. As Hitler said, “If there had been no such thing as a Jew, I would have had to invent one!”

  10. avatar Sanchanim says:

    Oh man now they are hurting my feelings!!! sniff snifff…..
    I get it, and I agree… this country have been divided badly coming up on this last election and continues to be. It is really sad…
    Then again I sit back and listen to these people sounding really dumb. Not sure what to make if it…

  11. avatar Billy Wardlaw says:

    The irony of Ms. Oates’ comments in the graphic above seems to escape her – there is a reason fewer gun owners are victims of violence than the general population.

    1. avatar Derek says:

      I saw some good ones like that. Something along the lines of “How about the next spree shooter go to the NRA HQ.”

      I don’t think he understands that there’s a reason spree killers don’t target groups of armed individuals.

  12. avatar Totenglocke says:

    If anyone is harmed as a result of this hate campaign, we expect them to be prosecuted under the hate crimes laws.

    That’s a joke. You know nothing would happen to someone who killed a gun owner.

    1. avatar Silver says:

      Something would definitely happen…they’d be congratulated and invite to the White House.

      1. avatar Totenglocke says:

        Sadly, that’s probably true.

  13. avatar Gregolas says:

    Let’s keep our cool, know the applicable laws and facts, and always have a non-lethal alternative! Remember, we’re in the right. The Constitution, logic, reason, and history are on our side. You’ll never persuade the anti-freedom ninnies like Piers Morgan. Just remember when your discussing the issue with some zealot twit, there’s always an uncommitted person nearby watching how you handle yourself.
    “A soft answer turns away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger.”Prov. 15:1

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      when your discussing the issue with some zealot twit

      And why in the name of the guy your just quoted would anyone discuss anything with some zealot twit?

      1. avatar Gregolas says:

        You’re right Ralph. Solomon says to minimize our time with this kind.”Do not answer a fool according to his folly or you will end up like him yourself.”Prov.26:4

  14. avatar tdiinva says:

    I have been reading Joyce Carol Oates for 30 years. I like her writing. She should stick to fiction and away from politics. Politically she is a bit of an airhead. In a 2004 interview she said she was voting for John Kerry simply because all her friends at Princeton were voting for him.

    My response to Ms. Oates is that many have tried to kill an NRA member. Most of them no longer walk the earth.

  15. avatar Ing says:

    When I was in grad school a few years ago, I was surrounded by people who acted just like this. “End hate” was their rallying cry. They were serious about ending hate, and they hated hate with all their hearts. They couldn’t see the contradiction.

    1. avatar Michael B. says:


    2. avatar Silver says:

      Ironically, the last thing they wanted to do was end hate. Without the hate, there’d be nothing to hate, and hate is all the left knows how to do.

  16. avatar Kelly in GA says:

    Umm, yeah. So some anti gun nuts are trying to rally up violence? You know, I bet that won’t work out too well…

    Could you see the irony? A flash mob protesting at a gun store with signs saying, “You don’t need more than 10 rounds” or, “Nobody needs assault rifles” suddenly turns violent and things get out of hand. The same folks who were protesting something “evil” turn evil and prove the point they were arguing against! I wish this upon no one. But it would be funny. Heavy dose of irony funny, not ha ha funny.

  17. avatar CA_Chris says:

    Being the victim of a violent crime is precisely the reason why many people buy a gun and join the NRA!

  18. avatar speedracer5050 says:

    Be calm be cool be factual an be prepared to defend yourself.
    Don’t rant and scream like they do. Be cautious when you are out and about.
    Although I have NRA and Hornady stickers on my back glass I won’ t hide who I am or my beliefs but at the same time I won’t shove it in their face either.

  19. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    All these attacks from gun control proponents reinforces an important point. Those hurling the insults and hate know that they cannot control themselves and that they are inherently vicious people without firearms. (If they had firearms, they know they would be shooting people left and right.) The problem: they assume that everyone else must operate just like them. Thus they assume that all armed citizens are wildly dangerous to everyone around them and, given a modest amount of time, are going to start shooting people. The technical term for it is projection. They project their behavior traits on everyone.

    The most important thing we can do is remain civil. And after giving them enough proverbial rope to hang themselves, illustrate how we remained civil in spite of the repeated hatred that they directed at us. At that point we have demonstrated unequivocally that we do not operate as they do.

    Note: remaining civil means controlling yourself. It doesn’t mean that we cannot respond assertively. I for one will almost immediately point out attacks and demand that they remain civil.

    1. avatar Silver says:

      –The most important thing we can do is remain civil. And after giving them enough proverbial rope to hang themselves, illustrate how we remained civil in spite of the repeated hatred that they directed at us. At that point we have demonstrated unequivocally that we do not operate as they do.–

      This only works if the majority or even close minority of the people in the country are actually civil, moral people. It’s pretty obvious after this whole debacle and the elections that that’s not true.

  20. avatar Silver says:

    I hope many, many hate-filled antis attempt their hate crimes and are killed by the armed intended victims, as they deserve.

    I meant this seriously — not ironically.

    Do you expect any less from the antis? They base their lives around depriving others of their rights and seeking total control over others. Being a sociopath suffering from moral overcompensation brought on by repressed violent desires is a requirement of being an anti. There’s no such thing as an anti who is also a decent person.

    It’s people like the antis who make self-defense so critical in these times. There’s your irony, antis. I arm up because you exist.

    1. avatar Phil says:

      Whoah, that’s a bit over the top. There are plenty of anti’s that are decent people basically, they are just ignorant and have been fed nothing but garbage. I converted one at work over the last week. It can take some time, but facts will win over some. Others….not so much. But you don’t have to win all of them over.

  21. avatar Greg Camp says:

    Punishing “thought” crimes is un-American. Punishing murder is what every civilized society does.

    I sent a bunch of messages to Ms. Oates. We’ll see if anything comes of it.

  22. avatar Lance says:

    I agree time to nail jerks who spread hate against conservatives like Piers Morgan they only seem to prosecute hate crimes for liberal causes well not they can prosecute for us!!!

  23. avatar Casey T says:

    I’m going to walk around with clothing that identifies me as a gun supporter. I think it’s important to show that you are not going to hide. If people want to come up to me and talk that’s fine. If they assault me, I will defend myself without using a DGU to avoid controversy and then press charges. We need to present ourselves as reasonable and explain why we can’t just let the Constitution get torn up. It’s not going to be comfortable but I’m not worried as they will be unarmed.

  24. avatar DisThunder says:

    I’d like to think that these morons with death wishes are much like our own morons that have their guns “go off” when they’re loading them up- These are just the very hard-to-miss village idiots of our respective communities. I think a lot of regular folks that aren’t fans of guns can be reasoned with to some degree. Which is why it’s been very good to see some of our unofficial spokespeople approach the subject very cool and collected-like.

    And besides, if you ever really ran across some some angry anti-gun protesters, that’s what pistol whipping is for.

  25. avatar APBTFan says:

    Quite simply the libs have free reign to spout every last bit of hate that comes to their idealistic little minds.

  26. avatar Mark says:

    We knew this was coming. I had an NRA decal on the rear glass of my car for decades, including when I lived in the SanFran Freakshow area but removed it the day I learned the obamanation had been re-elected.

  27. avatar JustAJ says:

    I seriously doubt any of these anti-gun mouthpieces would ever have the temerity to actually do any of the things they are spewing WRT actually attacking/killing gun owners. Many of htem are already convinced that every one of us legal gun owners are ticking time bombs, one fender bender away from mass murder. There’s no way they’d put themselves in a position which would justify them being shot. And the irony of what they’re spouting is certainly lost on them.

  28. avatar CanadianObserver says:

    After reading this I see the anti gun types screaming they do not hate because gun owners are not a legal protect group. Then i see commentaries about people not feeling safe if they wear a NRA hate or put a sticker on their car fearing slashed tires or violence.

    Blaming millions of people for the actions of one person is stereotyping
    Blaming millions of people for the actions of a person not affiliated or characteristic of that group is scapegoating (say a mentally ill kid hyped up on drugs…)
    Discrimination against millions of people for either of these two things in the form of taking away their rights to self defense…..

    ALL of these things are HATE.

    American school kids are taught this, young ones. I am shocked adults seem to have forgotten.
    See the pyramid of hate……

    It starts out small and gets worse with as you go up the pyramid. If you are already worried about having NRA stickers on your car you are damn well far up that pyramid.

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