No one ever really thought Beto O’Rourke really understood the American gun culture. Not really. Even while campaigning against Sen. Ted Cruz, he made his anti-gun beliefs abundantly clear, and this was in Texas of all places. He was never going to be confused with a pro-gun Democrat by any stretch of the imagination.
However, while backtracking from his mandatory AR-15 confiscation talk, O’Rourke betrayed his complete ignorance about hunting and guns in the United States.
On Friday, while speaking in Des Moines, the former Texas congressman seemingly backtracked on his position, which had become more radical in recent weeks.
O’Rourke was responding to a question from a high school student, who informed O’Rourke that rifles like the AR-15 are effective hunting tools. O’Rourke said it was the first time he had heard of AR-15s being used for hunting purposes — and then backtracked on mandatory confiscation.
“Perhaps a way to address a legitimate concern or need is to ensure that those who have or want to use an AR-15 are able to keep it at a hunting club or at a gun range so that there is some control and safeguards still placed on that firearm,” O’Rourke said.
Keep our AR-15s at a hunting club or gun range?
How elitist can one politician sound on guns, anyway?
First, Mr. O’Rourke, allow me to explain to you a bit about most hunting clubs in my neck of the woods. They exist, of course, but generally not as entities with permanent hunting land and facilities for gun storage. They generally lease land from people like farmers and set up temporary stands and blinds but aren’t able to build anything else. After all, it’s not their land.
They pay to have permission to hunt for the year or for however long the lease lasts. There’s no clubhouse or armory on these piece of property because the farmers or other landowners don’t allow that kind of construction. The places that do have such facilities are either private hunting lodges where people pay for a weekend or they’re high-end clubs that your rank and file hunter simply can’t afford.
Gun ranges aren’t very different.
Most gun ranges in my area are either publicly owned or are simply open to the public. They might be owned by a gun store or something like that. They’re not in the business of storing people’s guns. They’re not private clubs with a handful of members, they’re open to anyone with a firearm who is willing to do what’s required to use the range.
Hell, even the gun clubs I know with private ranges aren’t remotely set up for someone to store firearms on-sight.
Again, those that are set up for that also tend to be expensive gun ranges that cater to the wealthy, not the average Joe who wants to take advantage of their Second Amendment rights.
But what would Beto know about any of that? He’s a caricature of the out-of-touch Democrat. He went to an elite boarding school, then an Ivy League university. The only hunting clubs and gun ranges he would likely know anything about are the kind that he and his fellow elites attended.
He wouldn’t know a damn thing about how the rest of us hunt or shoot. He wouldn’t know about the challenges of hunting public land with a couple hundred other people on opening day of deer season or of trying to find a club to join so you can kick in a few bucks on a lease. He wouldn’t know anything about having to travel the better part of an hour just so you can zero a deer rifle or squeeze off a few rounds with your AR-15 because there’s nowhere else to shoot it. He wouldn’t know about not being able to conduct drills you desperately feel the need to do because the public range won’t allow that kind of shooting.
He doesn’t understand any of that.
Why would he? He’s not someone who has ever had to struggle in his entire life, and a comment like that just proves it to us all.