Reps. Thomas Massie and Lauren Boebert have managed to outrage millions. How? They simply shared pictures of their families holding firearms.
Oh, many claim it’s that they did so just days after a mass shooting at a Michigan high school, but they never can tell anyone just how long one should wait before sharing a photograph of you and your family holding firearms.
Writing at USA Today, one writer is clearly triggered by the images.
Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., and I have a few things in common.
We are both white women. We are both mothers. We have both lived in Florida and Colorado (she is from the former; I am from the latter). But that is where the similarities end.
When I saw one of my state’s representatives in Congress post a Christmas card from hell with a picture of her and the kids around the tree and clutching their military-style weapons after a deadly school shooting in Michigan – I had to say something.
No, you really didn’t have to. You chose to, which is fine. You have that right, but you could have also opted not to say anything and show the entire world that you’re an idiot.
Like the old knight at the end of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade said, you chose poorly.
Mass shootings are a ubiquitous part of American life. But we don’t have to accept that as the status quo. Similarly, we must not accept that our representatives in government threaten other members of Congress and taunt traumatized families with their armed tyranny.
These displays of wanton disregard for peace and security must have consequences.
Except, how do they show disregard for peace and security?
In both photographs, but particularly Boebert’s, the children are exercising proper gun safety. Their fingers are off the trigger and the weapons are pointed in what appears to be a safe direction. There’s no threatening imagery or gestures present. There’s just a family exercising their Second Amendment rights.
Every time a Republican posts a picture of themselves and their families snuggled up to the muzzle of a semiautomatic rifle immediately after a mass shooting, I wonder what the Founding Fathers would think if they knew that this was what was to become of the Second Amendment.
I think they’d have realized that if people like the author didn’t get the vapors over every appearance of a firearm and if people didn’t try to restrict gun ownership in the wake of these shootings, there wouldn’t be any reason for anyone to post such images.
However, you’re also deluded if you think the Founding Fathers wouldn’t have taken similar pictures. It’s likely the only reason they didn’t was that there was no photography. With pictures being such time-consuming things in their day, holding a firearm for hours or days wasn’t particularly attractive. Getting a quick shot with a cell phone? That’s a whole other matter.
And let’s remember that our Founding Fathers didn’t try to disarm people who sided with England after the Revolution. It wasn’t just gun rights for those who favored independence. In the wake of the Civil War, Confederate troops were allowed to remain armed as well. These were people who actively opposed to the American government of their day, and there was no effort to disarm them.
The truth of the matter is that photographs like Boebert are desperately needed.
No, they aren’t without their problems, but it’s important that people like this writer come to understand that gun owners have no reason to restrain themselves because of what someone else did. We shouldn’t feel obligated to hide our gun ownership simply because some people think we should.
The fact that she’s clearly just upset by the image–she admits that the Second Amendment protects our right to keep and bear arms, but seems upset simply that the picture was shared–doesn’t mean we should change anything.
So gather your families together and take photos of everyone holding a gun if you want. It’s not anyone’s place to tell you that you can’t do it.