Celebrating the National Day of Service, and the legacy of Martin Luther King, by brandishing assault rifles at the Capitol

    While thousands of good Americans turned out yesterday, at the President’s request, to commemorate the life of Martin Luther King by volunteering their time as part of our National Day of Service, devout gun lovers across the country decided to express their patriotic love for this country a bit differently. Instead of volunteering to help paint their local schools, or clean up their neighborhood parks, many of them decided to strap on their most impressive military-grade armaments, drive to their respective capitol buildings, and shout about God-given right… and pathological need… to be able to dispense lethal force at a moment’s notice. The following video, shot by our friend Bonnie Bucqueroux at the Lansing Online News, shows what transpired at the Michigan Capitol.

    And, here, if you couldn’t make out all of the words, is the speech delivered from the steps of the Capitol by the man calling himself “Dave from Westland”:

    “When I went to my first gun rally here in Lansing, in ’96 (or) ’97, we had no ability to conceal carry. No ability to open carry. No ability to buy a high-capacity standard semi-automatic rifle. No ability to buy a machine gun suppressor. And you had to try to retreat if someone broke into your home before you shot him. Those things are all changing. My last rally here, I was actually inside the Capitol with a rifle. I never would have believed it would have been possible, but it was through the efforts of people like yourselves, who took the time from their lives to fight for things that were important to them.”

    Yes, my friends, things really do seem to be getting better all the time… Sure, there were a lot of shootings at gun shows on this, our nation’s first annual Gun Appreciation Day, but no one ever said that freedom didn’t have a cost. If we want to live in a society, as I know we all do, where we’re all able to buy assault rifles without background checks, fill them up with dozens of armor-pirecing rounds, and carry them into our local JC Penney, then we should expect that, every once in a while, someone’s going to get a freedom hole in their chest, right?

    Sarcasm aside, how fucking stupid do you have to be to plan your ridiculous pro-gun action for the same weekend that sane people everywhere are commemorating the life of a great American civil rights leader who was, you know… SHOT TO DEATH?

    Did no one say, “Maybe we should put this off until next weekend?”

    But… who knows… maybe that’s exactly the message that they wanted to convey to this audience of angry white men. Maybe this wasn’t just about defending the 2nd amendment, but about reclaiming a weekend from that “sexual degenerate, (and) American-hating communist,” Martin Luther King. I hate to think it, but maybe it’s possible that the image of a threatening black man lying dead from a gunshot wound is exactly what these “patriots” want at the forefront of people’s minds.

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      12 Comments

      1. anonymous
        Posted January 20, 2013 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

        Speaking of guns, did you see this quote from Rush Limbaugh? “You know how to stop abortion? Require that each one occur with a gun.”

        http://jezebel.com/5977540/rush-limbaugh-you-know-how-to-stop-abortion-require-that-each-one-occur-with-a-gun

      2. anonymous
        Posted January 20, 2013 at 11:35 pm | Permalink

        Another gun story from today’s paper:

        They knew the Delano house far too well. It was where Christian Philip Oberender, then 14 years old, had murdered his mother in a shotgun ambush in the family rec room in 1995.

        Now, 18 years later, Carver County Sheriff Jim Olson was sending his deputies back to the home where Oberender still lives. Just two days earlier, Olson had scanned the day’s shift reports and froze when he tripped over Oberender’s name. A scan of a Facebook page then showed firearms spread out like a child’s trophies on a bed inside the home, along with notes about the Newtown, Conn., gunman who shot 20 children to death.

        What Olson’s deputies found in the home was chilling: 13 guns, including semi-automatic rifles, an AK-47, a Tommy gun, assorted shotguns and handguns, including a .50-caliber Desert Eagle.

        Even more disturbing was the letter Oberender had written recently to his late mother, Mary: “I am so homicide,” it said in broken sentences. “I think about killing all the time. The monster want out. He only been out one time and someone die.”

        Today, Oberender sits in a Carver County jail cell on a charge of being a felon in possession of firearms. And Olson, who investigated the 1995 murder as a young detective, finds his investigators at the center of a case that exposes the dangerous loopholes in the nation’s gun laws and Minnesota’s system of criminal background checks.

        Even though Oberender killed his mother with a firearm, even though he was committed to the state hospital in St. Peter as mentally ill and dangerous more than a decade ago, he was able to obtain a permit to purchase firearms last May. That piece of paper gave Oberender, now 32, the ability to walk into any licensed Minnesota retailer and buy any assault weapon or pistol on the rack.

        Dozens of other Minnesotans judged by a court to be mentally ill have also found that designation no barrier to obtaining deadly weapons.

        http://www.startribune.com/local/west/187610601.html

      3. Ken
        Posted January 20, 2013 at 11:37 pm | Permalink

        Freedom Hole. You need to trademark that.

      4. Edward
        Posted January 21, 2013 at 7:37 am | Permalink

        I love the part in the video where the man says that he has the right to own personal nuclear weapons.

      5. anonymous
        Posted January 21, 2013 at 7:51 am | Permalink

        Also on Gun Appreciation Day.

        “Teenager Reportedly Used AR-15 to Kill Five in New Mexico”

        http://www.theatlanticwire.com/national/2013/01/teenager-reportedly-used-ar-15-kill-five-new-mexico/61199/

        The price of freedom?

      6. Topher
        Posted January 21, 2013 at 8:22 am | Permalink

        Where is my freedom to own and drive a tank? Why can’t I have one? I want it. I don’t mean the cheap wanna-be tank Hummers that people drive around. I want to drive an actual tank. Then I want to drive it to work and get the city to make roads big enough for my tank. I’m going to call them Freedom Tanks.

      7. Mr. Y
        Posted January 21, 2013 at 9:10 am | Permalink

        Facts are dangerous things.

        Here’s another one for the arsenal.

        “Gun deaths in America since only 1968 exceed the casualty totals of all U.S. wars by 212,994 deaths.”

        Source: http://www.addictinginfo.org/2013/01/20/more-americans-have-died-from-domestic-gunfire-than-all-wars-in-u-s-history-is-that-true/

      8. Alice Krum
        Posted January 21, 2013 at 10:02 am | Permalink

        A message for the men at the Capitol.

        “I have decided to stick to love… Hate is too great a burden to bear.”
        ― Martin Luther King Jr.

      9. Eddie Jackson
        Posted January 21, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

        Something else to ponder.

        http://truth-out.org/news/item/13890-the-second-amendment-was-ratified-to-preserve-slavery

      10. Bob Krzewinski
        Posted January 22, 2013 at 1:04 am | Permalink

        Tank, somebody wants a tank??? I want a nuclear bomb. Isn’t it my God-given right to be able to have one since they exist? Isn’t my right to have such a weapon protected under the 2nd ammenement?

      11. anonymous
        Posted January 27, 2013 at 9:08 am | Permalink

        Every time I read about someone being shot at a gun show, I’m surprised to find that I’m not terribly upset.

        http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/01/26/1500431/for-the-sixth-time-in-one-week-man-shot-at-gun-show/?fb_comment_id=fbc_123511497820655_106821_123724954465976#fc8b2e328

      12. Meta
        Posted January 27, 2013 at 9:20 am | Permalink

        The New York Times on the campaign to market guns to kids.

        Threatened by long-term declining participation in shooting sports, the firearms industry has poured millions of dollars into a broad campaign to ensure its future by getting guns into the hands of more, and younger, children.

        The industry’s strategies include giving firearms, ammunition and cash to youth groups; weakening state restrictions on hunting by young children; marketing an affordable military-style rifle for “junior shooters” and sponsoring semiautomatic-handgun competitions for youths; and developing a target-shooting video game that promotes brand-name weapons, with links to the Web sites of their makers.

        The pages of Junior Shooters, an industry-supported magazine that seeks to get children involved in the recreational use of firearms, once featured a smiling 15-year-old girl clutching a semiautomatic rifle. At the end of an accompanying article that extolled target shooting with a Bushmaster AR-15 — an advertisement elsewhere in the magazine directed readers to a coupon for buying one — the author encouraged youngsters to share the article with a parent.

        “Who knows?” it said. “Maybe you’ll find a Bushmaster AR-15 under your tree some frosty Christmas morning!”

        Read more:
        http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/27/us/selling-a-new-generation-on-guns.html

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