The National Rifle Association has got this amazing thing going and they aren’t about to let President Obama mess it up.
It goes like this: Gun-related horror happens; Obama proposes policy the NRA once endorsed; the NRA pretends Obama is coming for your guns; gun sales skyrocket; no law-abiding citizen ever has any guns taken away. Repeat, as parents of first graders mourn.
It’s been the only predictable form of economic stimulus since 2009.
Obama tried something crazy Thursday evening — a town hall where he could confront the NRA’s talking points live on CNN.
The NRA wisely saw where this was headed.
Obama might ask trick questions like, “How many guns have I taken?” or “Why would I want your stinky gun?” or “Have you spoken to a doctor about your fantasy that a black man is coming for your phallic symbol?”
Anything he did that didn’t involve him backing an aircraft carrier up to Texas and starting to gun-grab wouldn’t help the NRA’s cause. So it didn’t show up.
What about the idea that only a good guy with a talking point can stop a bad guy with a talking point? Not when that talking point is the basis of the entire growth of your business.
The fear that someone is coming for your gun is a staple of candidates who are coming for your health insurance, reproductive rights, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, minimum wage, child labor laws, voting rights, grandma…
Conservative critics consistently cite a few spare comments Obama and Hillary Clinton have made to Australia, the nation that bought back one-fifth of its population’s shotguns and rifles and drastically reformed its gun laws in 1996 after a mass shooting killed 35 people. Guns are still legal, but you must license them and have a reason to use them that’s not self-defense.
The results have been horrifying: There hasn’t been a mass shooting in 20 years, gun homicides have been cut in half and suicides — which kill thousands of American gun owners a year — were reduced by 65 percent.
Australia also has a minimum wage of $17.29 an hour and law that requires all citizens to vote or be fined, which many analysts believe would instantly make America more progressive. So you can see why conservatives think Australia is hell on Earth.
But Australia doesn’t have a Second Amendment, which the Supreme Court ruled in 2008 states explicitly that an individual has a right to own a gun and the government has a right to regulate it. And since “regulate” rhymes with “confiscate,” that’s scary enough for the NRA.
So unless Cher’s Twitter account launches a coup, no one is coming for our guns. And that’s one piece of news that the NRA can’t ever let get out.