John Hawkins lays out, clearly and succinctly, the sheer hatred of conservatives that is currently manifesting itself on the left side of the aisle.
There’s no talk of changing their agenda (other than making it more radical), no talk of appealing to people who didn’t vote for them, no wondering what they did wrong.
That’s the problem. They don’t believe they did anything wrong. They believe the real issue is that you’re racist, sexist, subhuman pieces of garbage who need to be punished.
John’s article wraps up with these sobering words: “I wish it wasn’t that way, but that is what the modern Left has become and if we don’t acknowledge that reality, we’re kidding ourselves.”
Sadly, I agree. During the Democratic presidential debates last year, Hillary Clinton proclaimed that she was proud to consider the National Rifle Association as one of her enemies.
A candidate for President of the United States was proud to count millions and millions of her fellow citizens as an enemy.
Think about that for a second.
In that light, it’s only natural that the NRA would respond, and respond they have, with this recruiting commercial featuring Dana Loesch.
I had a hard, hard time putting my finger on what I didn’t like about that NRA ad. Yes, everything they say about violence from the radical left is true and correct, but what was bothering me was the fear-mongering that was going on in the ad itself.
Well that, and the “freedom’s clenched fist” tagline at the end, which treads way too close to “jack-booted thugs” territory for my liking.
Fear is a powerful, powerful emotion, and it works well as a motivating force. It works on me: I bought my first AR-15 in the autumn of 2007 because I knew I would eventually want to have one, and I was afraid (there’s that word again) that Obama would re-instate the assault weapons ban and make it more difficult to own one.
However, by its very nature, fear is a defensive mechanism, and not something you use to move forward. Fear is something you use to pull back, to retrench. Since the days of the Clinton-era Assault Weapons Ban, gun owners have had many, many reasons to believe that the government wants to disarm them, and the NRA has been very successful using that fear to motivate its members.
But the tide is turning. We’re winning. The majority of gun owners view their firearms as a necessary tool for the self-defense, just as a fire extinguisher is viewed as a necessary tool for fire prevention. Gun owners now know the confidence of effective self-protection, and fear tactics no longer work well with us.
So how do you tell the NRA’s message, but without the fear? What if the same images were used, but the words were different, perhaps something like this?
I am one of the millions of people who are NRA members, and I carry a firearm with me wherever and whenever I can. I understand that that when I carry a concealed firearm, I give up my “right” to be upset at the actions of others, but Igain the power to save my life and the lives of my loved ones when they and I need it most. That power lets me, and millions of responsible gun owners just like me, weather the storm of political violence that is upon us now, and that confidence will continue to keep us safe and drive us forward once this storm has passed.
Now it’s no longer “We, the NRA, are the Clenched Fist of Freedom”, it’s “We, the NRA, know that there’s hatred and violence out there, and we won’t let it affect us, We are safe, happy and secure, and we want you to be this way as well. Join us. You are not one the people who condone such actions, you believe, as we do, in free speech and the right live free from fear. We are the NRA, and we stand on your side.”
Conservatives are facing an angry mob of leftists, and it is tempting, very tempting, to give into to that anger and fight fire with fire. However, one of the first things you realize as an armed citizen is that Spider-Man was right: With greater power (like a sidearm on your hip) comes greater responsibility in your personal life. This is why serious self-defense instructors teach de-escalation and avoidance rather than violence as the solution to most potentially violent encounters, and it’s a lesson that we need to apply to to the real and potential violence that’s coming from the left right now. Should we give in all the time, in all situations? No, but we should be very, very picky about where we choose to say “Upon this rock, I will make my stand.”
We are not responsible for the actions of others (including the radical left). We are, however, 100 percent responsible for our own reactions.
What will our reaction be?