Because, um, because he’s a DEMOCRAT, right?

First, let me apologize that I’ve been missing in action all day. Some kind of horrific stomach bug. I’m somewhat better now, but then I haven’t eaten since breakfast.

But just to say I’ve posted something, let me share this…

Back on this earlier post, a reader named Rose wrote:

I don’t know why Republicans think Democrats don’t own guns. Most of my family members are moderate Democrats (although we do unfortunately have a few loony Tea Party cousins) and we own guns. Shotguns, rifles and handguns. We hunt. We shoot targets. And I guarandamntee you that I’m a helluva better shot than Haley.

So I don’t understand why Southerners think only Republicans like guns.

Well, as it happens, Rose, Vincent Sheheen is a regular Southerner, as he noted in a story by Yvonne Wenger:

Sheheen said he also supports gun rights.

“As chairman of the South Carolina Sportsmen’s Caucus and gun owner, I have repeatedly worked with the NRA to protect the gun ownership rights of South Carolinians,” Sheheen said in a statement. “There is no candidate that is a stronger supporter of Second Amendment rights and as governor, I will make sure the rights of citizens to own guns are never infringed.”

So how come this “Gun Owners of America” (of which I had never heard before Nikki touted their endorsement; had you?) didn’t endorse Vincent? Yvonne wondered, too, and asked. Here’s what she didn’t learn:

The group’s director of communications Erich Pratt said Monday that the reason why Sheheen did not receive the endorsement wasn’t immediately available.

Don’t you love it? “Wasn’t immediately available!” Of course, the answer most likely is that the folks making this decision probably didn’t know squat about Vincent Sheheen or his positions on issues, and didn’t care. They just went with the Republican who mouths extremist slogans. So, if she’s one o’ US, he’s gotta be some gun-hatin’ hippie liberal weirdo, right? Stands to reason…

This kind of reminds of the national media’s ecstasy over the idea that South Carolina might elect an “Indian-American woman.” It never occurs to them that as a Lebanese-American Catholic, Vincent would also score two firsts as governor. As if that sort of thing mattered. And like the “Gun Owners of America,” they don’t care, either.

Maybe they’d care if Will Folks claimed to have had an affair with him.

Uh-oh. I shouldn’t have had that thought when my stomach was already queasy…

19 thoughts on “Because, um, because he’s a DEMOCRAT, right?

  1. j

    Brad, I could not agree more with your observations. There are many of us who are political realists and who have CWPs. Glad you’re feeling better – watch out for those bugs!

    Reply
  2. Kathryn Fenner

    Good points, Brad, and I hope you feel better. I’ve been a bit crampy since that delicious Seawell’s lunch. (urp)

    FWIW, though, in the rest of the country, Catholicism isn’t the exotic curiosity it is in the South. It probably didn’t occur to the national press to care, 50 years after we had our first Catholic President.

    Reply
  3. Matt

    “This kind of reminds of the national media’s ecstasy over the idea that South Carolina might elect an “Indian-American woman.” It never occurs to them that as a Lebanese-American Catholic, Vincent would also score two firsts as governor. As if that sort of thing mattered.”

    It occurs to me that unlike Nikki Haley, who has repeatedly talked about her Indian heritage (and would not really be able to hide it from even a casual observer, anyway) Vincent Sheheen doesn’t openly talk about any sort of Lebanese ancestry that he might have. Why doesn’t he talk about that? I’m sure you can figure it out.

    Most people would have as much reason to think that Vincent Sheheen had a partial Arab-American background as they would to think that about Jim Hodges or John Courson. You certainly wouldn’t know it from looking at Vincent’s bio on his website–actually, for that matter, you wouldn’t know that he’s Catholic, either. Haven’t heard him talk openly about that one.

    Oh, and if you wanted to take the whole “once a Catholic, always a Catholic” axiom to its extreme, then we’ve already had a Catholic governor, of course: James F. Byrnes. All right, all right–I don’t actually consider that to be the case, but at least we can say that we’ve had a governor who was born Catholic…

    Reply
  4. bud

    This is the problem with the 2 party system, especially in SC. I’m not a big second ammendment guy. At least not in the sense that it’s used by the Tea Party right. I think it would be a good thing to have strict control over guns, including specific tests to determine who is suitable to own a gun. To ignore the whole militia clause in the second ammendment has always been a bit humorous to me but that’s the right wing for you. Swear by the constitution when it suits your purpose then pretty much ignore anything you don’t like about it, that’s the GOP way. Then, just for complete hutzpah slam the dems for being interventionist whenever something they do may not fit exactly with their interpretation of the constitution.

    But I digress. My point here is that on many issues (guns, death penalty, military spending) there really isn’t a good choice among GOP or Dem candidates for a good ole liberal like me. It’s a shame too because I earnestly believe a good dose of liberalism would move the country and state in a positive direction.

    Reply
  5. Joanne

    THANK you, Brad. My gun-lovin’, Sheheen-supporting brother who works in a factory appreciates the correction to the stereotype that many Repubs cling to.

    Reply
  6. Greg Jones

    Don’t you wish somebody would endorse one or the other because of what the candidate says they’ll do….Wait, has either candidate really siad what they’d do if they were elected?

    Reply
  7. Juan Caruso

    “The group’s director of communications Erich Pratt said Monday that the reason why Sheheen did not receive the endorsement wasn’t immediately available.”

    Brad, until Vincent acknowledges he has a concealed weapons permit,
    the Gun Owners of America’s director is legally correct to claim ignorance, unless SC
    permitees are a matter of public record.

    In order for Vincent to retain traditional liberal voters, his best option is the one he has chosen — silence on the matter.
    Liberals will assume he does not have a CW permit.

    Hypocritical or shwred? Perhaps.
    Lawyerly? – Definitely.

    Reply
  8. bud

    Juan, I think you’ve mis-judged the liberal voters. Whether Vincent does or does not have a concealed weapons permit is not of great concern to me. Liberals aren’t going to bail on him either way. I think it would actually be a better strategy to just come clean about it. Liberals would applaud his honesty for making such a move and moderates who may like him except for their belief that he doesn’t have a permit are likely more inclined to support him. Sheheen is hardly a liberal and certainly no one even close to being a liberal could ever be elected governor in this state. But if he’s at least honest and hard working I’ll support him.

    Reply
  9. Kathryn Fenner

    I should hope that the endorsement would be based on the candidates’ positions and not their gun-toting status. For example, some smokers are in favor of restrictions on smoking–they wish to quit and would like social support, and others view it as their God-given right to smoke.

    People may have a concealed weapons permit without wanting everyone and his drunk brother to have one. Likewise, people who do not choose to carry guns may nonetheless support the rights of others to do so.

    Reply
  10. Mark Stewart

    Juan, Making a litmus test of whether a politician has, or does not have, a CWP (or even stranger to ask that they admit it) really isn’t fair to any of them; like lawyers they do come across the random lunatic in the course of their business. But unlike lawyers who have been shot and shot back, sadly, I can’t remember when a politician has shot back.

    I am struck more by the willingness of people to believe what they want to believe – and how narrow that worldview can be. Everyone believes the Second Amendment is good for the country; and the vast silent majority believes that some reasonable limits on this right ought to be imposed for the good of society. Then there is the fringe on both sides – but really they exist more on the pro-gun side of coin.

    So Hailey racks up another meaningless endorsement from the fringe. That’s all it would be if we all just yawned. Neither candidate is likely to ever make one single post-election comment about firearms – barring a tragedy.

    Reply
  11. Doug Ross

    Wasn’t it Texas Senator Phil Gramm who said “I have more guns than I need but not as many as I want”?

    Until a gun is used to commit a crime, I don’t care who has them, how many they have, or what type. However, if a gun is used in a criminal activity, the person should lose the right to own one and face a mandatory sentence. I am opposed to any mandatory jail sentences for simply owning an unlicensed gun. It should be a misdemeanor.

    Reply
  12. Juan Caruso

    Very good points all. Should have been clearer. My initial comment was an explanation of Brad’s question:

    “So how come this “Gun Owners of America” (of which I had never heard before Nikki touted their endorsement; had you?) didn’t endorse Vincent?”

    Specifically:

    Brad, until Vincent acknowledges he has a concealed weapons permit,
    the Gun Owners of America’s director is legally correct to claim ignorance, unless SC permitees are a matter of public record.

    Reply
  13. martin

    bud, I totally agree with you about ignoring the militia part of the 2nd Amendment.

    I’ve wondered how our Supreme Court would deal with it if a state or city that wanted to regulate guns required verification of membership in a militia of some kind before registering or selling a gun. If they are the strict constructionists they claim to be, how could they rule against it?

    Reply
  14. Juan Caruso

    martin,

    To answer your question…

    “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” [Part II-A of the Opinion of the Court in District of Columbia v. Heller; the Supreme Court cited this version of the Second Amendment.]

    Is not equivalent to:

    A well regulated Militia is necessary for the right of the people to keep and bear Arms.

    It just could not be any simpler.

    Reply
  15. bud

    I don’t know. The wording of the second ammendment is very confusing to me. Seems like the militia part of it renders the modern second ammendment arguments as advanced by the NRA and the Tea Party incorrect. But again, to me the language is very muddled. Why couldn’t they just come out and clearly say what they wanted?

    Reply

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