Twelve thousand Republicans have signed a potential suicide pact, petitioning their own party and candidates to allow guns into their political convention this summer. If ever the Republican penchant for gun rights and the rough and tumble world of political dealmaking should not mix, it would be at this summer’s GOP Convention. But that’s not stopping these Change.org petitioners from demanding their gun rights, and if the Republicans unwisely allow this, we might see the first ever political assassination broadcast live on national television during a political convention. Ohio is already an “open carry” state, but we all know how that worked out for Tamir Rice, and one can only imagine the nightmarish scenarios unfolding as armed Republicans jockey the prize of a Presidential nomination for someone other than the neo-fascist candidate who’s winning most of the GOP’s primary elections this year during what in all likelihood will be a brokered convention.
Ohio.com reports that the Secret Service is in charge of Republican National Convention security at Quicken Loans Arena this July 18th through the 21st, and that four years ago in Florida they banned weapons from inside that political arena. But, years of lobbying by the NRA has turned the Republican party into a nightmarish brew of racism, toxic ideologues and single issue voters and for these gun rights only voters, nothing, absolutely nothing is more important than being strapped to the gills with high powered weaponry. Nothing more vividly illustrates the Republican Party’s departure from reality in claiming that they need guns inside of what’s expected to be a hotly disputed political convention to, “DEFEND THEIR FAMILY.” From the petition:
This is a direct affront to the Second Amendment and puts all attendees at risk. As the National Rifle Association has made clear, “gun-free zones” such as the Quicken Loans Arena are “the worst and most dangerous of all lies.” This doesn’t even begin to factor in the possibility of an ISIS terrorist attack on the arena during the convention. We are all too familiar with the mass carnage that can occur when citizens are denied their basic God-given rights to carry handguns or assault weapons in public. EVERY AMERICAN HAS THE RIGHT TO PROTECT AND DEFEND THEIR FAMILY. With this irresponsible and hypocritical act of selecting a “gun-free zone” for the convention, the RNC has placed its members, delegates, candidates and all US citizens in grave danger.
The petition completely ignores private property rights too. The Gateway Economic Development Corporation of Greater Cleveland owns the arena which absolutely and clearly gives “The Q” – as it’s known to locals – every right to set sensible policies for the protection of all who attend the arena’s events saying, “The policies of the Quicken Loans Arena do not supersede the rights given to us by our Creator in the U.S. Constitution.” I guess in Republican la-la land, where people support a candidate who thinks eminent domain is, “wonderful” today’s GOP conventioneer sees nothing wrong with this picture.
Years of GOP establishment code-talking which slandered poor people as ‘welfare queens’ when the multi-billionaire Walton family gets over $3 billion a year in tax credit they don’t have to pay to their slave wage Walmart employees, and after years of dog-whistles to their base about the evils of the federal government and how much we should be afraid they can’t protect us from terrorists even though you’ve got a better chance of being struck dead by lightning than ISIS, finally, oh finally, the dogs have arrived. And they’re hungry. And they want to bring a suddenly lethal element to a convention hall.
Grant Stern is the Executive Editor of Occupy Democrats and published author. His new Meet the Candidates 2020 book series is distributed by Simon and Schuster. He's also mortgage broker, community activist and radio personality in Miami, Florida., as well as the producer of the Dworkin Report podcast. Grant is also an occasional contributor to Raw Story, Alternet, and the DC Report, and a senior advisor to the Democratic Coalition