A Texas lawmaker was forced to take down his death threat to Beto O’Rourke over AR-15 buybacks

The American epidemic of gun violence was a prominent topic during last night’s Democratic debate, and the nation was surprised to see several candidates take refreshingly hard stances against civilian ownership of assault rifles like AR-15s and AK-47s. Former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke took the unprecedented step of calling for a mandatory gun buyback program, which elicited the usual posturing and bravado from gun-nut right-wingers who immediately began threatening to use the rifles against anyone who tried to take their guns away.

A Texas lawmaker, Rep. Briscoe Cain, immediately found himself in hot water for telling O’Rourke that his “AR-15 was ready for him,” which almost everyone, including Twitter’s staff, interpreted as a death threat against a presidential candidate. Twitter removed the tweet for violating its rules governing violent threats, but screenshots remain:

O’Rourke’s team added that “clearly, you shouldn’t own an AR-15—and neither should anyone else.”

It will come as no surprise to learn that this is not the first time that Briscoe Cain has found himself in trouble for gun-related shenanigans or inciting violence against Democrats.

Social media immediately erupted into mockery of Briscoe Cain, who likes to talk tough on Twitter but looks…shall we say, quite less intimidating in person.

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There is no rational reason for any civilian to own an assault rifle beyond “it goes bang real loud and I wanna have it.” The Founding Fathers certainly could not have predicted the development of assault rifles, and would likely be absolutely appalled at how the Second Amendment is enabling the endless slaughter of innocent Americans going about their day-to-day lives. The right-wing fetishization of their weapons and the zealotry of a tiny proportion of gun owners must not be allowed to keep up from the obvious solution to America’s gun massacre epidemic. We thank for Beto for having the courage to finally open the door to a mandatory gun buyback program, knowing that it means he likely never gets elected in Texas again.

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