Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Columns

June 11, 2014

House of Burgess: Heresy hunts in the gun world

Who gets to be in the club any longer?

(Continued)

“The Chipotle restaurant chain asked customers last month not to bring firearms into its stores after members of Open Carry Texas brought military-style assault rifles into one of its restaurants in the Dallas area,” reported Juan A. Lozano of The Associated Press June 3.

Later in the NRA-ILA piece, the author went on to denounce such practices, without naming any specific group.

“Let’s not mince words, not only is it rare, it’s downright weird and certainly not a practical way to go normally about your business while being prepared to defend yourself,” reads the piece. “To those who are not acquainted with the dubious practice of using public displays of firearms as a means to draw attention to oneself or one’s cause, it can be downright scary.”

As one might have guessed, Open Carry Texas took offense.

“The NRA has lost its relevance and sided with [gun control extremists] and their lapdog media,” stated a June 1 post on its Facebook page. “No one in NRA leadership has ever been to an OCT event, but feels competent to speak out against them.”

In the following days, the original NRA-ILA post was hastily deleted. Only a terse paragraph replaced it. A June 3 clip of Chris Cox, executive director of NRA-ILA, speaking with Cam Edwards on the Nosler-sponsored, NRA-produced Sirius-XM Patriot show “Cam & Co,” was also posted. In the video, Cox made quick work of distancing himself from the original post, calling it a “mistake” and a “poor word choice.”

“It shouldn’t have happened,” Cox said. “I’ve had a discussion with the staffer who wrote that piece and [he] expressed his personal opinion.”

These two stories aren’t examples of apostates to the cause in the slightest. I would classify them as True Believers, with impressive resumes to back them up. No, scarily enough, these are what pass for heretics in today’s gun world. That is, at least, according to the ones who actually call the tune: gun makers and those who feel their Chipotle Burrito Bowl just doesn’t taste the same without an AK-47 by their side.

If people like Metcalf and Cox can’t do the secret handshake correctly anymore, what hope is there for the rest of us? Who gets to be in the club any longer?

Rob Burgess, Tribune night editor, may be reached by calling 765-454-8577, via email at rob.burgess@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter at twitter.com/robaburg.

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