Remember how the self-destructive left got masses of normies to sing Don’t look back in anger after the May 2017 terror attack in Manchester. There is not so much of that going around after the Parkland shooting last month. There is, in fact, a lot of anger, and a lot of it is aimed the wrong way. The aftermath of the tragic shooting offers an interesting insight into the left’s political playbook.
Mass murder, cops take no action, left blames the gun.
Justified law enforcement shooting, cops take appropriate action, left blames the cops.
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) February 25, 2018
Using kids as a human shield
The most notable development has been the propping up of a couple of high school kids into a very heated and polarized national debate. The left is pushing these kids onto every platform they own, to spew rhetoric they know they wouldn’t get away with themselves. But now they have something to hide behind, denouncing any criticism as an attack on the poor, traumatized children.
So they get David Hogg to equate the NRA with child murderers on national TV, without any rebuttal or nuance. But gun rights advocates are not to respond to that, even with significantly milder language, because when they do the left paints that as the most immoral harassment imaginable. The left has turned the anti-gun Parkland shooting survivors into a human shield, pushing them into the fray to do their dirty work, while they must be aware of the pushback that would provoke.
If the right would push survivors of Islamic terrorism into the spotlight non-stop in the weeks after an attack, to criticize Islam and call for restrictions and regulation, the left would denounce them as the vile, opportunistic parasites that they are being themselves right now. But the contrary is true; we rarely ever hear from survivors of islamic terror attacks, except when they pardon the attacker, or Islam as a whole.
These kids are being exploited to further the left’s political agenda. It is abusive towards the kids, and amounts to emotional blackmail of the rest of the population. It is a tactic that depends on compassion, which will then be exploited as a weakness – but it may have an opposite reaction. These kids are being pushed so hard by the mainstream that it is hard to keep seeing them as victims, especially since those with the same experience are being ignored.
Their fellow-student Kyle Kashuv, who supports gun rights and the second amendment, is not getting anywhere near the same airtime. And do you think the left would care about kids who have been affected by islamic terrorism if they criticized islam afterwards? Do you think they would give those voices a platform? They wouldn’t, because it’s politics, and David Hogg, Emma González and the others are just pawns on a chess board.
-One of these Marjory Stoneman Douglas students is pro #2A
-One of these Marjory Stoneman Douglas students is still not verified pic.twitter.com/hUWlAofckm
— Chet Cannon (@Chet_Cannon) March 3, 2018
Professional activism presented as a spontaneous, grassroots uprising
David Hines of The Federalist pointed out the (in hindsight) obvious role of professional activist groups in organizing the many protests and press moments surrounding the Parkland high schoolers.
For two weeks, journalists abjectly failed in their jobs, which is to tell the public what’s going on. And any of them who had any familiarity with organizing campaigns absolutely knew.
The response was professionalized. That’s not surprising, because this is what organization that gets results actually looks like. It’s not a bunch of magical kids in somebody’s living room. Nor is it surprising that the professionalization happened right off the bat. Broward County’s teacher’s union is militant, and Rep. Ted Lieu stated on Twitter that his family knows Parkland student activist David Hogg’s family, so there were plenty of opportunities for grown-ups with resources and skills to connect the kids.
Hines offers a well-documented illustration of the machine behind the “magical kids”. From Rep. Debbie Wassermann Schultz who helped with lobbying, $ 500,000 donations from Oprah Winfrey and George Clooney to George Clooney’s publicist booking media gigs for free and Michael Bloomberg and Women’s March groups working to organize and promote the planned protest for March 24. But the mainstream media, celebrities and other social media ‘influencers’ continue to hype the movement as a spontaneous uprising helmed by a group of incredibly talented kids. Because it sells better, and evokes more sympathy.
A list of companies, most after some public pressure, severed their ties to the NRA, ending special deals for flights to NRA events or discounts for NRA members. But why? The NRA agenda hasn’t changed. The NRA had no involvement in the shooting. No distasteful response to the shooting after it happened (even after outright calls to “kill the NRA”, threats to spokeswoman Dana Loesch – and her children – and the aforementioned comparison to child murderers.
What has changed is the increased partisan political pressure, and the public shaming and emotional blackmail, intensified by plastering kids’ faces all over the media. By giving in, these companies are implying that the NRA is somehow complicit in the Parkland shooting. They are radicalizing their positions so that they can justify (to themselves) ignoring the NRA’s arguments or proposed solutions. They are paralyzing the debate, because they know a lot of pesky facts will get in the way of their agenda (there is no such thing as an ‘assault rifle’, 98% of mass shooting occur in gun free zones, low gun crime rates in other countries with high gun ownership, high gun crime in countries with strict gun control, America’s murder capitals having some of the country’s strictest gun regulations). Paradoxically, their hysteria is why the left is so effective at getting companies behind their causes: the pushback from the right is never as extreme, as vocal and as emotional as it is from the left.
And when the right stands up for rape victims or women’s rights, when the right puts forward people with first-hand experience, don’t expect any courtesy from the left. They will hurl the same insults at these people with the same virulence as always. They will still not hesitate to attack these people verbally and physically – and to justify both. Note that the left’s women’s rights champion Linda Sarsour tweeted “I wish I could take [her] vagina away” about prominent Islam-critic Ayaan Hirsi Ali (who has been subjected to genital mutilation as a child). Or simply look at how eager the left is, united from extremists to mainstream, to attack women protesting sexual aggression against women during the Women’s March in Berlin.
Their mainstream media monopoly is certainly a significant factor, simply because that enables them to bombard us with their message and they can easily leave out or spin counterarguments. But ultimately, it’s that logic and reason don’t stick to brand names the way the insults and insinuations of the left do. The left engineers controversy, and that’s how they’re able to get companies (including Youtube, which has taken to demonitizing gun channels after the Parkland shooting) to do their bidding.
But it all only lasts until the financial impact gets too big. The lesson for the right is to not be afraid to play into people’s emotions, and to let our money do the talking.
Gun rights, self defense and gun free zones
If you’re wanting the other reason why we can’t have an honest debate about this one is because, quite frankly, I don’t think any of us, on this side of the aisle, believe you when you say that’s all you want to do. It will be bump stocks, it will be background checks, it will be a different kind of background checks that register the guns… Then, after that, it will be ‘We need to ban assault weapons.’ ‘What’s an assault weapon?’ ‘Something that looks scary,’” Freitas asserted. “Then after that it will be semi-automatic rifles, then it will be semi-automatic hand guns. Then it will be revolvers, shotguns… because when the policies fail to produce the results you were promising your constituents, you will be back with more reasons for why we’ve got to infringe on Second Amendment rights.
Speaking of walk-outs, Virginia House of Delegates member Nick Freitas triggered his Democrat colleagues this week to the point of them walking out. Because why listen to a politically opposing standpoint in a political arena when you can just make a theatrical statement and then use your mainstream media cronies to sling mud?
The idea that schools could be a popular target for shooting sprees because they are designated gun free zones, and the subsequent suggestion to end that designation, are met with derision and abhorrence from the left. They are not taking on the debate for two obvious reasons. First: they don’t so much want to end school shootings as they want to ban guns. Second: the facts are not on their side and there is a good chance it would have at least a positive effect, if not ending school shootings altogether. 98% of all mass shooting take place in gun free zones. And there already are schools that allow their teachers to carry a fire arm, and that train their teachers accordingly.
TX passed the "School Marshall Law" in 2013. Now 172 districts with armed teachers/administrators. Not one problem. Teachers take their 80 hours of training free of charge, or at a steep discount. Around 20% of staff armed in each school.
Did I mention, "not one problem"?
— Ty Nordic CSCS (@TyNordic) February 24, 2018
My friend sent me this photo of the school where his son goes. Melissa High School in Texas pic.twitter.com/hw9AFibE9y
— Joe Biggs (@Rambobiggs) February 27, 2018
It works. Because guns with responsible owners are not innately dangerous objects. They do what they are supposed to do: keep people safe.
It’s not an actual argument, since it’s anecdotal, but I’ve been in several gun debates on Twitter in the past couple of weeks. And as someone from a country with no gun culture debating Americans on the subject it was striking that the arguments of my opponents kept boiling down to “guns are dangerous” and “a gun ban would magically make all guns disappear”. There was no room for logic, facts or arguments. There were only their two broad and wild assumptions, to be taken as truth. Gun control advocates at a higher level may be more eloquent and better prepared, but the entire stance on their side of the debate seems to rest on emotion – which is not a very reliable source for sensible policy. But for those with the means to drown out opposing viewpoints, for instance because they own the mainstream flow of information, it is an effective way of shutting out a debate.
But if you think the left’s approach to solving mass shootings through, you inevitably come to the conclusion Bill Whittle drew in his “Virtual State of the Union” In 2013:
No one watches a leopard chase down a gazelle and denies that the gazelle has a right to use its hooves and horns to protect itself from the predator. But there are people in this room tonight, and all across the country, who would deny that same right to self defense to other human beings. Such people seem to think that the way to stop the leopard is to cut the horns off of the gazelle.
~ Bill Whittle
School shooters don’t care that bringing guns into a gun free zone is illegal. School shooters don’t care that murder is illegal. But the left seems to think that they would suddenly stop at the precise law that just happens to fit their political agenda.