Republican gubernatorial candidate Eric Greitens loves him some assault weapons. In fact he released a political ad in which he proceeds to blow the heck out of something in the distance with a military-style AR-15 carbine. Just a good ol’ boy having himself some fun blowing the beeswax out of what he calls “politics as usual.” Loves him some heavy-duty metaphors, too, it seems.
This weekend a troubled, homophobic, ISIS loving young man also made use of an AR-15. One Omar Mateen, who, despite having been investigated by the FBI for possible terrorist inclinations, flourished his Florida firearms license and concealed carry permit, walked into a gun store and, as Digby puts it, “walked out with a hand gun and an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle with the capability of mowing down a hundred people in a matter of minutes. And that is what he proceeded to do.” There was nothing metaphorical here, of course.
Given the nature of Greitens’ ad, the Orlando event gives rise to some questions for the aspiring politician (who, incidentally, seems to want to pretend that he’s no politician, but a NAVY SEAL):
- Should anyone (except for politicians who need gun props for political ads) be allowed to buy a military assault weapon, such as the AR-15, dubbed by Think Progress the weapon of choice of mass murderers? Such weapons, after all, were intended for the battlefield and are of little use otherwise – unless you want to kill lots of folks really fast.
- Should individuals on the terrorism watch list be allowed to purchase arms?
- If the answer is no, would Greitens voice support for a congressional measure to be reintroduced by Democrats – and which was previously rejected by his fellow GOP politicians – which would prohibit sale of firearms to those on the list? In the past GOPers have insisted that such a prohibition might inconvenience a few folks erroneously on the list and that inconvenience outweighs other security considerations. 2nd amendment, you know.
I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for answers. Heck, this being Missouri, I won’t even hold my breath waiting for the questions to be asked.