Shocking, I know, that supporters of an overbearing authoritarian regime that executes women for defending themselves from rapists would be big fans of gun control. The Tehran Times, which has strong links to Iran’s Foreign Ministry, sounded more like Moms Demand Action this week with an an editorial blaming U.S. gun laws for the current crime spike. In fact, the paper even approvingly cites Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety in its anti-gun and anti-US propaganda.
Following a spate of mass shootings earlier this year, President Joe Biden described gun violence as an “epidemic” and “international embarrassment”. The facts on the ground suggest he is correct. No place in the United States is immune to this “epidemic”. According to the U.S. President, every day in America, 316 people are shot and 106 of them are shot dead. According to the Every town for Gun Safety Support Fund, every year, gun violence is estimated to cost the United States $280bn. Money that could go to helping the nearly 600,000 homeless Americans.
I’d rather be homeless in the United States than live in a palace in Iran, frankly. I’ve got nothing against the Iranian people, and in fact I would love to see the protesters who sporadically take to the streets in opposition to the mullahs eventually overthrow the regime. Revolution at the ballot box is foreclosed, however, and thanks to Iran’s repressive gun control laws, the people are at the mercy (or lack thereof) of their rulers. As Human Rights Watch reported just this week about the brutal crackdown on protesters in the Iranian province of Khuzestan:
Since July 15, 2021, Iranians have protested deteriorating living conditions in Khuzestan and several other provinces, including Isfahan, Lorestan, Eastern Azerbaijan, Tehran, and Karaj. As of July 28, human rights groups have verified the identities of at least nine people who were shot dead or died of injuries during the protests, including a 17-year-old boy, in Khuzestan and Lorestan provinces. Iranian government officials have announced the death of three protesters and a police officer during the protests. Videos shared on social media from protests in cities in Khuzestan show security officials shooting firearms and teargas toward protesters.
On July 15, people in dozens of towns and cities in Khuzestan province, which has a large ethnic Arab population, took to the streets for several nights to protest not having clean water for days. Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) identified six victims and at least 171 people arrested during the protests. Unconfirmed reports indicate the number of deaths and arrests may be higher. Amnesty International and Radio Zamaneh news outlet have published the names of three more people who were killed during the protests.
It’s odd, but I can’t find any mention of these deaths, much less an op-ed excoriating them, at the Tehran Times website.
No, instead the Times’ editors are much more interested in bashing the NRA and the “Zionist” lobby, as well as pushing for gun control activist David Chipman to be confirmed as ATF director. Seriously.
The NRA has millions of members and spends millions of dollars lobbying lawmakers. Once you are on the payroll of the NRA, which many representatives are, then it’s difficult to see changes in the foreseeable future.
Unfortunately, lobby groups are the heart of American politics, in essence, they are the one who shapes future policy, not the lawmakers themselves. The congress members are just the face of the lobby groups. A good example here is the very aggressive Zionist lobby in Washington DC that shapes American foreign policy in West Asia, nothing is going to change when it comes to Washington’s approach to the mass killings and massacres occurring in occupied Palestine. The Zionist lobby obviously doesn’t care about the genocide of Palestinians in their homeland. Likewise, the NRA doesn’t care about the families of victims of gun violence who are being killed on their own soil.
At the moment, Biden’s nomination for the head of the ATF, the U.S. agency that plays the biggest role in overseeing gun rights, David Chipman, is in doubt. Gun control advocates had hoped Chipman who himself is a strong supporter of stricter gun laws would take the position and play a crucial role in the fight against gun violence. Standing in the way of this nomination which looks like it’s doomed to fail; is none other than the NRA and Republicans in the pocket of the lobby group.
Railing about the NRA and the “gun lobby,” backing the nomination of David Chipman… I swear, if it weren’t for the snarking about “the Zionists,” this could have been written by Shannon Watts herself, which just goes to show you how inherent authoritarianism is to the ideology of gun control. Ultimately, for both the editors of the Tehran Times and the leaders of the U.S. gun control lobby, their idea of public safety revolves around stripping the public of one of our most basic human freedoms; the right of self-defense. And with the government slaughter of civilians in Iran this week, we know exactly what “safety” can look like when gun control activists succeed in depriving the people of their right to keep and bear arms as a defense against tyranny.