Contrary to the prevailing views of the mainstream media, I do not believe for a second that Donald Trump called upon “Second Amendment People” to kill Hillary Clinton.
But let us suppose that, for argument’s sake, this is precisely what he meant. What makes anyone think that any Second Amendment person would do such a thing in the first place? No responsible gun owner is going to kill Hillary Clinton just because Donald Trump or anyone else tells him or her to do so.
Now I grant you that your average gun owner and defender of the Second Amendment does not have a great deal of affection towards the Democrats’ presidential standard bearer. But there’s a hell of a difference between not wanting Hillary to win the election and wanting Hillary to lose her life. The fact that liberals actually believe that your average gun owner and defender of the Second Amendment would wantonly murder Hillary Clinton or anyone else that doesn’t share their worldview is the real scandal here. When Connecticut Democrat Senator Chris Murphy tweets, “This isn’t play. Unstable people with powerful guns and an unhinged hatred for Hillary are listening to you,” it is a smear against millions of law abiding gun owners who dare to disagree with Hillary Clinton on the Second Amendment and a myriad of other issues.
Sadly, it is but the latest in a long line of smears by liberals against gun owners and those who defend the Second Amendment. Following the ISIS terrorist attack at the gay nightclub in Orlando this past June, New Hampshire Democrat Senator Jean Shaheen targeted AR-15s despite the fact it was not the weapon used in the shooting. This didn’t prevent Shaheen from claiming that those who owned an AR-15 were “buying it to do bad things.”
Well, there are between 5 to 10 million legally owned AR-15s in this country. Is Shaheen suggesting that every single one of these owners is out to do bad things? Presumably a portion of these AR-15s are located in New Hampshire. Does she really hold her constituents in such low regard? Surely she knows that that anyone who buys an AR-15 in the Granite state must go through a FBI background check. If a FBI background check isn’t good enough to satisfy Shaheen that AR-15s owners are on the up and up, then what is?
Then there is Hillary herself. During a CNN Town Hall in June 2014, Hillary compared gun owners to terrorists. She told Christiane Amanpour, “We cannot let a minority of people, and that’s what it is, it is a minority of people, hold a viewpoint that terrorizes the majority of people.” I’m not sure where Hillary gets this “minority of people” idea? The year she made this statement, Pew Research concluded that support for the Second Amendment was at a 20-year high.
Given this level of support for the Second Amendment, who exactly is doing the terrorizing? Was it “Second Amendment People” who terrorized 49 patrons killed at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando? Was it “Second Amendment People” who terrorized the 14 people killed at an office Christmas party in San Bernardino? Was it “Second Amendment People” who terrorized the five police officers executed in Dallas or the three police officers assassinated in Baton Rouge? For that matter, was it “Second Amendment People” who terrorized 20 schoolchildren and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary?
“Second Amendment People” have terrorized no one. How often have we heard about the NRA being the most effective lobby group from both supporters and detractors alike? The success of the gun lobby is because the NRA and other organizations know how to recruit and organize members and petition and persuade governments at the local, state, and federal level. If the NRA was an environmental organization, liberals would be saying, “This is how democracy works!” Given the effectiveness of the NRA and other gun rights groups in the legislative arena, why would any Second Amendment person have any reason to resort to violence? The idea that “Second Amendment people” are out to kill Hillary Clinton — Trump or no Trump — is absolute rubbish.
Most liberals love to caricature “Second Amendment People” as angry, white middle-aged Republicans. Yet some of the most passionate defenses of the Second Amendment I’ve heard are from Bernie Sanders’ supporters in Vermont. Which just goes to show that the divide over gun rights isn’t necessarily ideological as it is geographical. Of course, none of this prevented Barack Obama from telling limousine liberals in San Francisco during the 2008 campaign that reliable Democrat voters in small town Pennsylvania were bitter people who cling to guns and religion as if these were bad things.
So while I do not believe that Donald Trump wants Second Amendment people to kill Hillary Clinton, I do understand why many people aren’t prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt. This is, after all, a man who has encouraged violence at his rallies, has offered to pay the legal bills of those who commit violence in his name, and suggested there could be riots at the Republican National Convention if he wasn’t the nominee. But even if you believe Trump shouldn’t get the benefit of the doubt, surely law-abiding “Second Amendment People” should.