Monday, August 17, 2009

News: Man Totes Semi-Automatic Weapon Near President

I just read this article from the Huffington Post, which includes a video, of a man carrying a semi-automatic assault rifle (AR-15) at a rally where Obama was speaking, in plain view of the President. Now, this is legal in the state of Arizona but I think it's a little horrifying. Regardless of one's feelings on gun control (personally, I'm staunchly against it), I cannot understand a single justification for bringing an assault rifle a. near the President and b. in such a crowded area. Furthermore, this one man was not the only person in the crowd with a gun. Really horrifying. I can't imagine being in that crowd and seeing that, the discomfort I would feel. I think there is a big difference between exercising your right to own a gun, regardless of how I feel about it, and displaying an intimidating weapon in a way that is meant to cause fear.

This also happened earlier this week, on the 11th, at another rally in New Hampshire. If you're interested, check out this article. Now, this guy was carrying a sign that says "It's time to water the tree of liberty" which is a reference to the Thomas Jefferson quote: "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants."

Now, this opinion may seem a little liberal but I don't care: if this were a middle eastern looking man near George W. Bush, wouldn't he have been rotting in some prison by now, without a court date? I respect that they're willing to protect, essentially, this guy's free speech but when tactics of fear-mongering and intimidation are involves, shouldn't we be a little more concerned with the President's safety? I don't support violence against any public figure, no matter what your opinion is no the matter. What do you all think?


Emily S said...

I'm a little confused on why this guy brought the gun in the first place, and then why the secret service didn't haul his ass out of there. Seriously, people, how stupid can they be? If that guy was white or arabic you can bet they would have sent him out of there SO FAST!

Lacey! said...

Well, the first guy, the one in NH with the sign, was white. I think its that they were technically breaking no laws because their weapons were not concealed and were legal in their respective states. What's so horrifying is that its somehow NOT legal to wield an assault rifle a. near the President or b. in a crowd! Hello! Like you have control of your weapon in a crowd if its just hanging strapped to your back!