More on Liberalism: The Democratic Party and the White Working Class Vote

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  1. Avatar greginak says:

    The short version is that D’s need to loudly push for the many policies that actually help WWCV’s. The obvious retort is that people care more about other things then just dry policies and cultural factors work against D’s. Be that as it may D’s have to play to their strong suit instead of being wishy washy on their best aspects. They can work to ameliorate the cultural issues ( which is complex and related to race among other things) but you win be working your strengths.Report

  2. On the main topic, I think they need to listen to what they’re asking for economically and try to work it into their program. Right now Democrats are seen as at one and the same time raging welfare state spenders and business regulators – and corporatist benefactors of banks and big business (and they largely are the latter). It seems to me that, outside of a commitment to making the ACA work and/or reforming it, and to protecting entitlements, it’s the right time for a general review of the economic platform of the party. I don’t think that trying to broadly change the perception of the party’s social positions or cultural affiliations (being more in touch with NASCAR dads or what have you) offers much promise to the Dems in making inroads with working class whites.

    And it could be there’s just not much progress to be made here. The Dems might be best off focusing on building their young-female-minority-immigrant-profesisonal coalition and doing what they can with it. It seems to win them the WH lately. But the coalition does;t show in the midterms. If it doesn’t in ’16, obviously that’s when a reckoning with the white working class will have to take place. But just because it has to take place doesn’t mean it will amount to much. I don’t think, ultimately, there is much Democrats can do with this group. They’re pretty conservative; if you say you want to ease the burden on their small businesses, the Republican will always very credibly be able to say he’ll do it more and that’ll be that. If you say you only want very reasonable gun regs we all can agree on, the republican can credibly say that’s still more than this voter *wants*. These are basically Republicans, except some who are in play on the economy and external fears. But those persuadables are persuaded, I think, by conditions and performance, not by campaign positions. If the economy is good when a Dem is in office, they might vote for them; if scary shit is going down when he is, they’re less likely to. Certeris paribus, they’re more likely to vote Republicant than not because it’s simply come to be part of the cultural identity. Same for the members of the new Dem coalition. The partyism thing is, I think, real to some extent.

    On “Why is life-work balance [still] always treated as a woman’s issue?”, that’s one I really puzzle over. It makes no sense at all to me.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Michael Drew says:

      @michael-drew

      Amanda Marcotte and Erik Loomis both think that my #1 is the right solution because going after the white male vote is always going after the vote of people who are predisposed towards the Republican Party:

      http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2014/11/05/midterms_2014_64_percent_of_white_men_voted_republican.html

      I think both go a bit farther on the issue than I would but not by too much. I still think some minor tweaks to how employee-right issues are framed could either just end up being neutral or help but Loomis and Marcotte are clearly willing to write off the 64 percent of white guys who voted GOP as lost causes.Report

      • Avatar Kolohe in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        I like how Marcotte has the ability to read minds, even if we have data on what the voters were motivated by.

        (and I like her swing at ‘low information voters’, as its a line Limbaugh also uses all the time, and not particularly born out by those CNN exit polls (the less closely people said they were following the election races, the more likely they were to vote Democrat)Report

      • I’d only say that you can’t ignore it completely because a strategy aimed in part at women shouldn’t ignore white working class women. Dems don’t do well with white married women as I recall, especially rural & suburban, and working class. Doing better with them means at least exploring trying to make yourself a bit more palatable to their husbands. So there is a place for working on these issues within a New Coalition strategy. I think you work on this problem steadily to try to erode/control the margins of your losses, but you can’t go all-in on trying to win back large numbers of WWCVs, white males, etc. It’s clear what the future Democratic coalition is. By and large, you serve them as a party. You dress that up as nice as you can for those who you know you fundamentally don’t appeal to. Maybe you lose doing that in the long term, too. But attempting a major reshuffle and rebrand 1) goes against basic demographics and policy profiles that are way too ingrained in people’s minds to transform, and 2) would mean complete disarray for years in exchange for unlikely payoff.Report

  3. Avatar Doctor Jay says:

    Without a lot of prompting, I can get kind of ragey over the framing of work-life issues as “women’s issues”. I struggled with work-life issues for a long time as a parent and husband. I’m reasonably sure that my choices limited my career to some degree.Report

    • Avatar aaron david in reply to Doctor Jay says:

      When I was a single father (but not only parent) having many of these issues described as womans issues bugged me also. They are parent issues, regardless of gender.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to aaron david says:

        @doctor-jay @aaron-david

        I think they are more than parent issues but issues for all employees. Single people without children also deserve decent schedules.*

        *Though obviously it is easier for single people without children to have their free time truly be their own for the most part but not always. Single people could have partners, parents, or siblings in need.Report

  4. Avatar LeeEsq says:

    The real problem is that Democratic voters do not vote with the same sort of urgency that Republican voters do. Republicans show up reliably to vote. If Democratic voters could drag themselves to the polls than election dynamics would be a lot different.

    Many people on the left side of the aisle argue that the young don’t show up to vote because the Democratic party has nothing to offer them. I do not think this is the right analysis. As you noted recently, the good government types of Democratic politicians like Zephyr Teachout (I still can’t believe this a real name) do better with upper middle-class do-gooder types than people of color, who liked Cuomo just fine. There lots of young democratic voters like US citizens with undocumented parents or African-Americans or LGBT young people that face some very real consequences in the event of Republican victory. They just don’t have the motivation to vote in the same way Republicans do.Report

  5. Avatar j r says:

    The Second Amendment exists and I am willing to compromise that it does allow for individuals to own guns.

    That is might white of you.

    Where I draw the line is with open carry though and I think there should be a general respect for how local areas feel about guns.

    This is where you run into trouble. When you draw your line at open carry, it becomes pretty obvious that your opposition to guns is not rooted in the potential for them to fall into the wrong hands but is rooted in a cultural aversion to guns. And that’s fine. The sort of gun laws you want in a densely populated city are different than the sort of laws you can have in a rural area. Those calculations, however, ought to be made according to common sense and with respect to the spectrum of cultural norms that exist. In other words, stop pretending that your coastal, progressive effeteness is some sort of objective mark of superiority. People, even people who don’t have college degrees, know when they’re being looked down on and when they are being patronized.

    Separately, do you have any sources for the claim that there are more single-issue voters on the right?Report

    • Avatar Kim in reply to j r says:

      I haven’t seen ANY problem with open carry in Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.
      Saul, think a little and tell us why you dislike open carry.
      Even where it’s legal, few people really do it.
      Hunting’s legal in Pittsburgh, but you don’t see people hunting either…Report

    • Avatar Will Truman in reply to j r says:

      While I don’t know if “single-issue” is the right way to look at it, the passion asymmetry between pro- and anti-gun advocates was conventional wisdom in the early aughts and I think still holds up.

      I don’t have a problem with specifying concealment in the abstract. In the actual, though, while I think it might reasonable to tell someone in Seattle (for much of the year, anyway) that if they want a gun they should cover it up, that’s a tall order for someone in Tampa. I am also concerned about “Hey, you didn’t keep your gun 100% concealed, so it’s off to prison for you…” (I’d also question the consistency such a measure would be applied, and who would be on the wrong side of inconsistent enforcement…)Report

    • Avatar Michael Drew in reply to j r says:

      This is what I’m talking about above. I realize you’re not (I don’t think) a conservative or a Republican, but right here is were I have my doubts there’s any point to this handwringing about this group of people among Dems (until they absolutely have to, and even then I don’t know what the point or way forward will be).

      Those calculations, however, ought to be made according to common sense and with respect to the spectrum of cultural norms that exist. In other words, stop pretending that your coastal, progressive effeteness is some sort of objective mark of superiority. People, even people who don’t have college degrees, know when they’re being looked down on and when they are being patronized.

      This kind of quick slide from specific to general cultural resentment is always right there around the corner. And I think it’s more pronounced among the rural and exurban working class than it even is here in @j-r, who I’m going out on a limb to say is fairy elite, fairly coastal, just not Democratic. I actually don’t think this is a great example, as I think gun rights really are about gun rights for the majority of advocates. And I’m not saying they aren’t sincere about their issues. I’m just not sure it ultimately matters much, as a lot of these folks just ultimately don’t like Dems, or don’t like the coasts, or don’t like cities, or don’t like elites, or any combination thereof. They’ll find a way. And yeah, there might be causal reasons relating to political choices that were once real choices. but by and large those choices are way far-gone at this point. We are where we are; there’s no going back, at least there;s no choosing to go back through the actions or words of elites. If attitudes change, then they do, but just I don’t think it goes [politicians change their sales pitches -> people’s gut-level feelings about the parties and their candidates change] anymore.Report

      • slide from specific issue or policy questionReport

      • Avatar j r in reply to Michael Drew says:

        Not sure what you mean by “general cultural resentment.” Just for clarification, my comment wasn’t to some unspecified group of Democrats or progressive coastal elites. My comment was specifically to @saul-degraw.

        And if you call me the “fairy elite” again, we are going to have a problem.Report

      • By general cultural resentment, I mean

        In other words, stop pretending that your coastal, progressive effeteness is some sort of objective mark of superiority. People, even people who don’t have college degrees, know when they’re being looked down on and when they are being patronized.

        And if that was truly aimed only at Saul and you weren’t making a point about this being the undercurrent of attitudes about things like gun control among some part of the body politic, then I really don’t know what larger point you’re making with your comment beyond just having an issue with Saul. Which maybe is all you’re doing.

        But regardless, as I said, the point wasn’t really you saying this, it was just that that progression illustrates something that I think is there and applied to groups (liberals, coastals, urbanites Democrats) among this group of people (working class whites, especially rural and exurban), whom it is in fact documented that the Democrats have a hard time connecting with in general. So whatever your intent was is not so much the point; I was using your words as an illustration of something that I think is out there regardless of your intent in that passage. (I could, of course be wrong that it’s out there to the degree I suggest.)Report

    • Avatar James Hanley in reply to j r says:

      Where I draw the line is with open carry

      Are you okay with concealed carry? And if so, why is that better than open carry? For a false sense of security, the obliviousness of not knowing who’s packing?

      Personally, I think I’d be happier knowing who has one, and I wonder if maybe we wouldn’t be smarter to ban concealed carry and require open carry.Report

      • Avatar Marchmaine in reply to James Hanley says:

        Yes, this is something that confuses me as well.

        One needs a permit to conceal the weapon because if everyone can see that you have a gun… well, you have a gun.

        Concealing the gun so that people think you don’t have a gun is not the same thing as saying we don’t want guns in Seattle.

        So, in a weird way we are advocating that everyone conceal-carry without a permit… so that for the sake of not seeing a gun, anyone might have a gun?

        You are better of suggesting Guns be painted hunter orange and requiring to wear them outside their clothes holstered in an orange holster with reflective tape that says “GUN” on the holster. Then at least you could arrest all the people packing heat for illicit purposes and laugh at the gun nerds.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        For me, it’s simply I know the people who want to open carry. To quote Dilbert, I wouldn’t trust them with a piece of string.

        Obviously my small sample is not representative. But frankly, the movement has seemed less about standing firm on their rights and more about using the gun to coerce people into adhering to their social norms. Make sure the wrong sort learn to act right, or stay away — even if they’re behaving perfectly legally.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        Concealed carry makes more sense if you are carrying to protect yourself. If a deranged maniac or robber sees you have a gun they will shoot you first. A concealed weapon can be used if the situation warrants but keeps you safe from people knowing you are a potential threat.

        Open carry seems far to much about showing off your piece to other people with the implied threat.Report

      • Morat, is it your view that if you make them conceal their gun that they will decide it’s not worth having/bringing one?Report

      • If I carried a gun, I’d probably do it openly for the same reason that I carry my smartphone openly. It’s convenient. There’s also the matter of having to wear a jacket, or not.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        To add: I don’t think that’s reason to ban open carry, that’s just why I find the open carry folks more worrisome.

        The ones I’ve met, representative or not, strike me as zealots quite interested in the coercive power an openly displayed gun holds.Report

      • Avatar Damon in reply to James Hanley says:

        Most people who advocate “open carry” allegedly espouse the belief that if the general population is exposed to open carrying they’ll get less hysterical about guns and such. Whether that’s the case or they are going about it the best way is up for debate.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        Yeah Damon i’ve read that. Open carry people will teach us the right way and get rid of our wrong beliefs. And if they have to do that by overriding what other people think or like, well they are willing to suffer that burden. How noble of them. They will fix those people.Report

      • Avatar Kim in reply to James Hanley says:

        I’d have figured most people who like open carry are hunters. But I assume concealed weapons actually only applies to handguns. (it’s probably illegal to carry a weapon in a violin case, yes?)Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to James Hanley says:

        @james-hanley @j-r @will-truman @kim

        My problem with open carry is very much what @morat20 and @greginak wrote. I see it very much as bullying and a kind of implied threat of don’t you dare disagree with me because I carry around a big-ass gun. I think it is part of the same neo-reactionary movement that causes noxious gamergaters to release the private information of people who critique videogames and to issue threats of violence and rape against women who dare criticize their little world. I don’t know how many gamergaters exist but they are enough to cause people to be concerned.

        Why do people feel the need to walk around the food court with an AR-15 strapped to their back is just as valid a question as why do liberals not like open carry?

        And if what Damon writes below is true than they are being hardcore culture warriors about their values and worldview and I don’t see why I have to concede they are right.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        Morat, is it your view that if you make them conceal their gun that they will decide it’s not worth having/bringing one?
        No, my view is the cynical one that most people wanting to open carry explicitly want people to know they’re armed to intimidate and coerce. “I’m armed, you better not mess with me punk”.

        Where “punk” is sadly defined as ‘people not like me’. Teenagers. Strangers. The suspiciously ethnic.

        I’m talking open carry in daily, civic life here. Not gun ranges and deer leases and the like. Everyone I’ve met personally that wants to open carry wants to convey a suspect message, a threatening one — despite leading utterly peaceful lives. They’re quite aware that carrying a gun implies force backing their every move, and that’s why they want to openly carry one.

        I won’t pretend they’re representative of the movement as a whole. But quite obviously the people I meet personally are going to color my impressions heavily.Report

      • That might be why they carry the gun on the outside, but it might be that they carry the gun on the outside for the same reason I carry my phone on the outside.

        If you’re going to carry an AR-15, it seems likely that it’s a lot more convenient to carry it on the outside than wear a jacket over it. Especially if you’re in Tampa.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        Wait shouldn’t this thread on open carry be in Sam’s Gilmore Girls post? Isn’t that the more appropriate place.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        Will: Most people have no need for an AR-15 in a burrito joint. Or at Target. And if they did need a gun, they’d use the much more portable “hand gun”. Which can be concealed.

        You know, like most police do — who actually have an actual, daily reason to have a gun handy. (They keep shotguns and such in their car, because why would you carry it around unless you felt you were going to need it VERY soon?)

        I think you’re just avoiding the obvious here: People into ‘open carry’ wandering around suburbs and into stores carrying long rifles are NOT carrying them for any reason except to make sure everyone knows they have a big, honkin’ gun.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to James Hanley says:

        My problem with open carry is very much what@morat20and@greginakwrote. I see it very much as bullying…

        Yeah, but you also think that people sport Truck Nutz to piss off progressives.

        More to the point, the reasonable objection to too-lax gun policy is that guns will end up in the hands of criminals and laws against open carry really does nothing to stop that. So, it comes across as if your objection to guns isn’t based in actual criminal activity, but in demonizing gun owners.

        On this thread, I am seeing a bunch of people saying that anyone who wants to open carry is probably trying to threaten others, cause there is no good reason to open carry. This is precisely why y’all are having a problem getting through to white working class males.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to James Hanley says:

        If you’re walking around carrying an AR-15 as you go about your dialy business, I assume you’ve chosen to no longer be a member of society.Report

      • Morat, I agree that it is pretty dumb to carry an AR-15 into a burrito shop (as do a lot of my pro-gun friends). That has no bearing on my position on whether there should be a requirement that such armaments should be concealed.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        Morat, I agree that it is pretty dumb to carry an AR-15 into a burrito shop. That has no bearing on my position on whether there should be a requirement that such armaments should be concealed
        That’s because I haven’t addressed your argument, nor do I plan to. I live in Texas — I’ve yet to find any burning need to make finely nuanced decisions on my stance on gun ownership and carrying, because Texas laws are not and will not in my lifetime ever begin to approach a point where I will have to think about it.

        In short, there’s a lot of fuzzy grey area that probably needs to be finely parsed. I cheerfully admit that. But from the state in which I stand, that grey area is about sixteen miles down the road.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to James Hanley says:

        Let me get this straight. When you guys complain about supposedly lax gun regulation, you are not trying to decrease the levels of violent street crime, or school shootings, or gun suicides, or domestic violence incidents involving guns? What is really irking you is the statistically tiny group of idiots who periodically walk around in front of cameras carrying rifles?Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to James Hanley says:

        Perhaps if the Democrats did a better job with gun control, they’d have won this most recent election?Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        Eh, that sounded provocative and I didn’t meant it to.

        Basically, the open carry people I meet are all bug-nuts crazy and not the sort of people I’d trust carrying a gun in public. Since Texas gun laws are considerably gun owner friendly, I’ve really never needed to develop that stance further. It’s moot to me, as a practical matter.

        About as far as I’d go is the fact that open-carry is a provocative, deliberately intimidating and coercive thing to do virtually everywhere. (Deer leases, gun ranges, gun stores, and places like that being the obvious exceptions). I am in general against coercion, intimidation, and provocation — especially involving weapons.

        Concealed carry neatly allows the gun owner to HAVE his gun without doing all that coercion, intimidation, and implied threat of violence stuff.

        (Obviously one can’t conceal a long gun, but I’m comfortable with the “if you can’t holster it, don’t carry it around in public, idiot” legal concept. With the aforementioned class of exceptions, of course. )Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        Well yeah there were those hundreds of draconian new gun laws the D’s tried to put in effect….wait wha?Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to James Hanley says:

        In short, there’s a lot of fuzzy grey area that probably needs to be finely parsed. I cheerfully admit that. But from the state in which I stand, that grey area is about sixteen miles down the road.

        Just so you know, this exactly mirrors my position from the other side of this divide. I live in New York City. And I would like to have exercise my legal right to bear arms by keeping a handgun in my apartment and occasionally transporting it to and from a range in a locked box. I cannot legally do that and, yet, I continually hear people talking about how lax our gun control laws are.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        Let me get this straight. When you guys complain about supposedly lax gun regulation, you are not trying to decrease the levels of violent street crime, or school shootings, or gun suicides, or domestic violence incidents involving guns?
        Nope, when I complain about lax regulation, I am indeed trying to stop those things.

        What is really irking you is the statistically tiny group of idiots who periodically walk around in front of cameras carrying rifles?
        I am not sure how this follows the previous. Am I not allowed to find these people obnoxious AND find lax regulation something to fix?

        Because it seems pretty simple. If I find, say, a movie starring Ben Afleck to be an entirely awful film with no reedeming qualities AND i find Afleck to be a horrible actor always, I can hold that the movie sucks AND Ben Afleck sucks. I don’t have to pick one. I can even believe that the movie would suck even if Aflcek had been replaced.Report

      • My view on the legality of concealed vs open gun laws mostly breaks down to this:

        If you agree with the right to concealed carry, but think that open carry should be illegal, you essentially support arresting someone for taking their jacket off based on what you perceive the default/generalized motivation of the carrier to be. I don’t really see how the law can make a distinction between that guy and the guy who wears a gun because he wants everyone to see what a Tough Dude he is.

        (It should be noted, this does not apply if one is merely registering their disgust for Tough Dude people, but does not wish to make it illegal.)Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to James Hanley says:

        Well yeah there were those hundreds of draconian new gun laws the D’s tried to put in effect….wait wha?

        Bloomberg’s gun laws had an impact on the Colorado elections.

        Perhaps Colorado is the only state where they did, of course.Report

      • @will-truman

        The law wouldn’t need to make the distinction. Whether you don’t wear a jacket because you’re looking to intimidate people, or you take your jacket off because you’re hot and your exposed piece make people fearful, the point of the law is the same: allowing people to feel safe in public places.

        I’m not saying my position is ‘concealed okay, open not okay,’ but if one had that position, one really wouldn’t have to target and tailor to the intent of the open carrying. I think most people’s concern is with the effect of making spaces feel less safe. So you say, if you want to carry (in X places), you have to keep your jacket (or something) on. That the law also impedes people ability to intentionally intimidate could just be a salutary knock-on effect.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        If you agree with the right to concealed carry, but think that open carry should be illegal, you essentially support arresting someone for taking their jacket off based on what you perceive the default/generalized motivation of the carrier to be. I don’t really see how the law can make a distinction between that guy and the guy who wears a gun because he wants everyone to see what a Tough Dude he is.
        Why not? If I’m wearing boxers, removing my pants in public is quite legal. Yet illegal if I’m going commando. The law can easily differentiate.

        Or take the fighting words exemption (or even the ‘fire’ in a theater) exemptions in free speech. Or incitement to violence.

        But then again, I’m of the mind that you don’t have some weird unlimited right to carry whatever weapons you want anywhere and everywhere you go, so I don’t find minor restrictions (like, say, requiring you to gain a permit before carrying it in public or requiring it to be concealed) to be any different than requiring your car to meet certain emissions standards.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        Ahhh Bloomberg, former mayor and rich guy with a PAC……that does equal massive new laws and limits.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to James Hanley says:

        This thread has gone in a slightly absurd direction and I take responsibility for that. At the same time, it is instructive in the reasons why Democrats might have problems with certain demographics.

        @saul-degraw starts talking about gun control and immediately goes to the issue of open carry. Why? In any jurisdiction where it is legal to carry a weapon, the restrictions on concealed carry are much tougher than on open carry. There are reasons for that. From a law enforcement perspective, open carry just is not that big a deal, because the people who do it are licensed (or they live in a state where a license isn’t needed) and these are not the people responsible for gun violence. And if you are worried about people buying guns legally and then trafficking them to areas where they are illegal, again, not much to do with open carry.

        If you want to talk about gun control and your first instinct is to go straight to talking about open carry, that is a sign that you are less interested in gun violence and more interested in guns as a cultural signifier. And if your part of your political worldview is built on signifying against certain demographics, don’t be surprised when those demographics don’t support your world view.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to James Hanley says:

        Greg, are you aware that there were recalls in Colorado earlier this year that successfully recalled two (democratic) state senators who voted for Bloomberg supported gun laws?

        I mean, maybe you didn’t.

        Have you heard of “Mayors Against Illegal Guns”? It might be worth googling.Report

      • @michael-drew My point is that, without that distinction, which I don’t believe can be made, I’m pretty steadfastly going to be against a concealment requirement even though I otherwise have no particular interest in defending the right of people to carry guns openly instead of concealed. (That and uncertainty over how concealed a gun has to be.)Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        @j-r FWIW…I’m apparently one of those evil anti gun people but i think you should be able to do that. It sucks you can’t. However NY is an outlier as far as i know. Here is AK there are really good reasons to open carry if you are out in bear country in which case you should have your gun quickly accessible instead of in a pack. However bears rarely rampage through Costco or Walmart so people carrying guns there isn’t quite the same deal.

        I think most of the open carry folks i’ve heard from are the trying to look tough and are show off their guns type. Are they a small but loud group, yes of course they are. I’m not sure how the law should treat that since Will gave a good example of how difficult that could be. In the end while you may be getting a raw deal, guns are super plentiful in this country and easy to get in most places. I could pick one or five up at the food market tonight. It is also almost effortless for someone who isn’t legally allowed to buy a gun to get around the law.Report

      • Or, to put it another way, I’m actually very sympathetic for the desire for people with guns to conceal them. I don’t actually think that’s unreasonable. And I’d even support (or at least be indifferent to) a law requiring it… if it didn’t require people carrying guns in 90 degree weather in Texas to wear a jacket or put their gun away. That’s where I find myself in opposition.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to James Hanley says:

        yes jay i’m aware of those things. the mayors group is simply a activist group, they havn’t actually passed any laws. there have been pro-gun control groups around for a long time. yeah there was a fight in colo which was won by who again? my point is that there has been almost nothing done in the pro gun control direction and a lot of movement in the anti gun control direction. The ant GC side has been winning strongly for years with few moves towards any pro gun measures. ( although apparently a couple pro gc measures won in WA) The pro gun side has won big time yet seems to sound more scared even while winning.Report

      • Avatar morat20 in reply to James Hanley says:

        Or, to put it another way, I’m actually very sympathetic for the desire for people with guns to conceal them. I don’t actually think that’s unreasonable. And I’d even support (or at least be indifferent to) a law requiring it… if it didn’t require people carrying guns in 90 degree weather in Texas to wear a jacket or put their gun away. That’s where I find myself in opposition.
        So seriously, the minor inconvenience of choosing another holster (they make ones that can be hidden by your shirt) should carry the day?

        If we’re gonna hold ‘minor annoyance’ as a reason to get rid of laws, I’ve got a seriously long list…starting with those fun voter ID laws that have become all the rage and ending with many traffic laws that I find annoying, however safe it might make others.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to James Hanley says:

        yeah there was a fight in colo which was won by who again?

        Do you define “winning” as “getting the law passed and keeping it on the books” or as “getting the law passed and then having politicians keep their jobs”?

        I can see why the former might be seen as a better definition. If we use that definition, you get a different answer than if we use the other.Report

      • Avatar zic in reply to James Hanley says:

        My issue with open-carry is typically the folk who open carry. One dude I know is scathing on FB; he’s going to carry his gun because some bad people (usually people with darker skin than he has) are out there to hurt him, his wife, whatever. He’s not the only one, either. There’s this insane level of paranoia that makes him a threat to anyone who he doesn’t like the looks of for whatever reason.

        So it’s not the open carry; it’s that the people who opt to open carry often have really, really impaired sense of risks.Report

      • Greg, I’m pretty sure the gun control laws passed are still in effect in Colorado, except the part that was supposed to prevent Denver from having more stringent laws.

        So, not only did the law pass, but it went further than it was intended to.

        At what point do laws cease being the imaginary construct of paranoid minds?Report

      • Morat, when the payoff of said law is only really a feeling of safety, and when the consequence of using the wrong holster is arrest, then… yes. So I end up supporting open carry.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to James Hanley says:

        Part of what is confusing me about this thread is that are a bunch of gun control advocates essentially arguing in the wrong direction. You guys do realize that in just about every jurisdiction, the rules for concealed carry are stricter than the rules for open carry?

        If you’re starting from a position of it being illegal to carry a gun at all, then I guess open carry seems like a move away from gun regulation. In places where open carry is allowed, however, it is generally illegal to conceal carry without a conceal carry permit. So, it’s actually not legal for the guy open carrying a pistol on his waist to cover it up with a jacket or tuck it under his shirt.

        And the reason why it is legal to open carry and illegal to conceal, without a permit, is because, from a law enforcement standpoint, the guy open carrying is generally not a threat when compared to the guy concealing.Report

      • Avatar Damon in reply to James Hanley says:

        @ greginak

        Yeah, I don’t really see it as beliefs as such. It’s more desensitization. Case in point: My “VERY LIBERAL”, her description, anti gun friend were in northern virgina, very near DC, walking along the street. I pointed out the couple ahead of us and told her that he was open carrying. She had a snit. Me, not so much. I’ve been around open and concealed carry folks quite often, and tools don’t scare me. I really view the open carry thing like gay rights. “We’re here, we’re carrying, deal”. Folks got used to the idea of gay folks in society and getting married. Some concept. You aint’ got to like it, but maybe in the future, your kids will think you were weird for opposing such an obvious civil right.Report

      • Avatar LWA in reply to James Hanley says:

        @damon
        Your friends were walking along the street, carrying “tools”?
        What were these tools to be used for?
        Why did they need them?
        In what future universe will signaling your intention to kill someone not going to be shocking and provocative?Report

      • Avatar Damon in reply to James Hanley says:

        @lwa
        So let me correct your misinterpretations first:

        “Your friends were walking along the street, carrying “tools”?
        What were these tools to be used for?
        Why did they need them?
        In what future universe will signaling your intention to kill someone not going to be shocking and provocative?”

        First off, I didn’t say they were my friends. I said that I’d been around folks carrying both concealed and open. Second, a firearm is a tool. As to why did they need them? One guy was a lineman in the desert. Might be handy for snakes not to mention criminals. However, who are you to demand they have a reason you approve of to carry them? And frankly, I’ve never been in fear of my life because someone was carrying openly, nor is that the message they are trying to convey.Report

      • Avatar Kim in reply to James Hanley says:

        The only time I’ve felt intimidated by a guy who was “open carrying” was when he was ALREADY breaking the law. (again, I think the rules on hunters are different..)Report

      • Avatar Kim in reply to James Hanley says:

        LWA,
        there’s a group of people in my city that wear guns, and are sort of “assisting” the cops. They dress up in something like band uniforms, and go and harass the on-the-street drug dealers and other good for nothings.

        Nobody’s dead so far, so there’s that.Report

      • Avatar LWA in reply to James Hanley says:

        @damon
        A lotta snakes on the streets of northern Virginia are there?
        Yes, a gun is a tool. A tool for killing things. Carrying a gun signals a sincere desire and belief in the need to kill someone or something.

        Yes, I and the rest of the citizenry have every right to insist upon there being a demonstrated need for deadly firearms, before we allow them to be carried in public.
        If you are in the wilderness, fine. But in crowded cities, not so much.

        Again, I don’t believe there is any unfettered right to carry a deadly weapon. We can and should place restrictions on it when we believe public safety is at issue.

        Its stunning to me, the absurdity of the argument-
        1. A gun is necessary to be carried everywhere in public, to defend one’s life from a real threat of deadly violence;
        2. It is merely a tool, a harmless little thing; this tool and its implied intent to kill should shock and frighten absolutely no one.Report

      • Avatar Kim in reply to James Hanley says:

        LWA,
        Are you against the rampant proliferation of fireworks too? How about fertilizer? Or diesel fuel, for that matter?

        Besides, guns make horrid psychological weapons. They just don’t work nearly as effectively as knives.Report

      • Avatar Damon in reply to James Hanley says:

        @lwa

        A lotta snakes on the streets of northern Virginia are there?
        Yes, if you consider politicians as snakes.

        Yes, a gun is a tool. A tool for killing things. Carrying a gun signals a sincere desire and belief in the need to kill someone or something.
        No it doesn’t indicate a sincere desire and belief in the need to kill something. It signals a willingness to defend oneself with lethal force SHOULD the need arrive-not to mention being legal to do so-in certain jurisdictions.

        Yes, I and the rest of the citizenry have every right to insist upon there being a demonstrated need for deadly firearms, before we allow them to be carried in public.
        If you are in the wilderness, fine. But in crowded cities, not so much.
        Opinion statement. Irrelevant to those jurisdictions where “the people” have already decided it’s ok/legal to open carry.

        Again, I don’t believe there is any unfettered right to carry a deadly weapon. We can and should place restrictions on it when we believe public safety is at issue.
        Opinion statement. Others differ.

        Its stunning to me, the absurdity of the argument-
        1. A gun is necessary to be carried everywhere in public, to defend one’s life from a real threat of deadly violence;
        2. It is merely a tool, a harmless little thing; this tool and its implied intent to kill should shock and frighten absolutely no one.

        It’s not the tool that is a danger, it’s the tool bearer. And remember we’re talking about rights, no “need”.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to James Hanley says:

        Yes, I and the rest of the citizenry have every right to insist upon there being a demonstrated need for deadly firearms, before we allow them to be carried in public.

        Constitutionally, no, you have no such right at all. If you want to start referring to some basis of rights outside the Constitution, then you’ll just have to contend with the natural rights crowd and their insistence on a natural right to always be able to defend oneself.

        Or in other words, an argument can be made from your direction, but it’s not as easy, obvious, or knockdown as I expect you imagine it to be.

        That’s not to mention that once again we see your automatic retreat to the people trumping the individual whenever someone’s doing something you–as an individual–don’t like.Report

      • Avatar LWA in reply to James Hanley says:

        There isn’t – even now- an unfettered right to carry weapons- the restrictions on automatic weapons, explosives, and such are perfectly constitutional.

        So what’s the argument, that guns shouldn’t be intimidating because only good people are carrying them? And they pinky swear to only use them for good purposes?

        The Constitutional restriction on the government to ban weapons can’t possibly mean that the public has no power to place restrictions on public order and safety.

        Further, I am arguing that there is no natural right to even possess a deadly weapon, barring a demonstrated need.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to James Hanley says:

        The Constitutional restriction on the government to ban weapons can’t possibly mean that the public has no power to place restrictions on public order and safety.

        Aaaannnnnnd nobody said anything remotely like that, so once again an attempt at a serious conversation with you has taken an immediate left turn off the clear thought highway into idjitsburg.

        I shouldn’t have even tried.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to James Hanley says:

        Its stunning to me, the absurdity of the argument-
        1. A gun is necessary to be carried everywhere in public, to defend one’s life from a real threat of deadly violence;
        2. It is merely a tool, a harmless little thing; this tool and its implied intent to kill should shock and frighten absolutely no one.

        Perhaps it is so stunning to you, because no one is actually making that argument. So, yeah it is absurd.Report

      • Avatar LWA in reply to James Hanley says:

        #1 and 2 are exactly what open carry advocates are saying.
        They demand to be allowed to carry guns into bars, churches, grocery stores, everywhere. And yet tell us that we are silly for being alarmed and intimidated over their “tools”.

        And they aren’t above brandishing their guns outside a meeting of moms asking for legislation, as a way of intimidating the moms into silence.

        See, you are defending nutcases, and getting angry with me for comparing you to nutcases. Sure you are reasonable- but your fellow travelers aren’t.Report

      • Avatar Damon in reply to James Hanley says:

        @lwa

        “And they aren’t above brandishing their guns outside a meeting of moms asking for legislation, as a way of intimidating the moms into silence.”

        You really need to think about the words you write. Brandish has a specific meaning: “to shake or wave, as a weapon; flourish” and it’s illegal…..every frickin place in the US, absence a legal reason to defend yourself. A rifle slung over your shoulder isn’t brandishing. Carrying a pistol in a holster on your hip isn’t brandishing.Report

      • Avatar Citizen in reply to James Hanley says:

        @ LWA
        There is a blind spot here also. Those mothers pushing for legislation could be seeking to keep the right to carry their guns. Some folks solution to The Big Man carrying the scary intimidating guns is not to be scared and intimidated.

        I know at least two women who voted republican for just this reason. The notion that most women (especially moms) cower to coercion displays a fair amount of ignorance on your part about a wide swath of the population.

        I’ve attempted to converse with several liberals in the past about how guns on display could be modified in appearance/function or carried in less frightful manner. Maybe concealed is the answer to this, if so any minor slip ups should not be grounds for jail sentences.

        There is another issue about barrel length and accuracy that should modify this discussion, but is repeatedly dismissed.Report

    • Avatar LWA in reply to j r says:

      I think most of the purpose of carrying a gun openly is to frighten or intimidate others. There really isn’t any rational or reasonable reason to carry a gun to Kroger otherwise, unless you are looking for really, really, fresh free range chicken.

      Which is exactly why its time to start a discussion about repealing the 2nd Amendment. I know, it isn’t going to happen anytime soon, but neither was same sex marriage. Until it did.

      There isn’t a naturally occurring logic about the existence of a right to carry a deadly weapon in public areas, absent a clear and reasonable anticipation of violence.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to j r says:

      @j-r

      I find something troubling about your comment because it seems to be wanting to have it both ways.

      You are accusing me of both being white (and therefore betraying minority votes) and also of being a cultural elitist who irrationally hates a certain aspect of gun culture.

      So the options you leave for me is to go all out for gun control or to go out all out for what ever the nuttiest gun nuts want.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        The “mighty white of you” comment is just a joke, man. It’s a sarcastic way of saying thank you for conceding that the Second Amendment says what it does.

        My point about gun control is that you decided to focus on “gun culture” as opposed to focusing on regulations that might possible be related to stemming gun-related crimes. It is just plain odd to focus on open carry as opposed to licensing, registration and gun safety issues, unless you care more about guns as a symbol than guns a means for facilitating violence.Report

    • Avatar Road Scholar in reply to j r says:

      “There is ‘no reason why, on the streets today, a citizen should be carrying loaded weapons. ‘”

      “Guns are a ‘ridiculous way to solve problems that have to be solved among people of good will. ‘”

      Who said these?Report

  6. Avatar j r says:

    The question of why work-life balance is often presented as a gender issues is really a bit of a trick question. It’s because the type of people who generally present these sorts of questions are usually women or are usually talking to an audience of women. Men care about work-life balance. We simply tend to approach the issue as an individual matter and not as a collective action problem.Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly in reply to j r says:

      @j-r “Men care about work-life balance. We simply tend to approach the issue as an individual matter and not as a collective action problem.”

      I’m not so sure I agree.

      Can’t speak for the blue collar world, but in almost every white collar job I’ve worked, a man who wanted a work/life balance was seen by his peers and his superiors as a weak link on the team, regardless of that man’s actual productivity. Especially in the larger companies I’ve worked for, I’ve seen top salesmen, managers and VPs be moved out over time because they didn’t come in early, stay late, and work weekends the way that other men who underperformed did.

      For whatever reason, I’ve never seen this standard be held to women. Mind you, they didn’t promote women as often, but there was always an unspoken agreement that spending time with family and taking care of kids (in any way other than bringing home a paycheck) was what women were going to do anyway. But men are largely expected to sacrifice work/life balance. (White collar men, anyway.)

      As to @saul-degraw point about the Dems, well… Good luck trying to make the case to the base that men are a victim-y group that need some help.Report

  7. Avatar Jesse Ewiak says:

    Is there where I point out that outside of the South, the GOP actually does OK with white working class voters?Report

  8. Avatar Kolohe says:

    Most voters over 60 are not really ‘working-class’ in the sense that a great majority of them don’t work for a paycheck anymore. Political issues that are important for people that go to work everyday (or want to) do not resonate as much for the retired and semi-retired (willingly or otherwise).

    So it’s kind pointless to try to hone the message to appeal to the ‘white working class’ – as Landis’s own figures show, those people, more literally defined, are already voting for Democrats. They are, for some reason, simply not showing up unless the White House is on the line.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to Kolohe says:

      @kolohe

      I think you are conflating two different groups into one but there is probably overlap on a Veen diagram. People over 45 seem drawn to the GOP more than the Democratic Party and the white working class are the same.

      Now there are also plenty of people who are older than 45 that are liberal and Democratic because this is a very big and diverse country.Report

      • Avatar Kolohe in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        But don’t you see how talking about ‘work-life balance’ means nothing to the man or woman that is working 10 or fewer hours a week, either because they want to, or because their circumstances won’t allow them to? Ditto any sort of education policy when their kids are past college age? Healthcare when they have Medicare?

        The appeal to older people is always necessarily small c conservative – e.g. the Democrats win on this when they’re against ‘reforming’ SS/Medicare.Report

  9. Avatar Saul Degraw says:

    So I linked to a Marcotte article above that showed 64 percent of white men voted for the GOP.

    Over at LGM, Erik Loomis wrote that the only white men who voted majority Democratic either lack a high-school degree or have graduate degrees. So workers, professionals, and intellectuals.

    I find this interesting.

    There are probably other factors which cause the 36 percent of men to vote Democratic like being GBT and/or Jewish and/or Union members (who still tend Democratic).Report

    • Avatar zic in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      Over at LGM, Erik Loomis wrote that the only white men who voted majority Democratic either lack a high-school degree or have graduate degrees. So workers, professionals, and intellectuals.

      This seems like the group of men who can imagine themselves as becoming part of the 1%; even the 10%. They don’t want to tax the earnings they imagine they might have in the future.Report

      • Avatar Kolohe in reply to zic says:

        Or it could be a general but vague dissatisfaction with the way things are going right now. But completely mischaracterizing the likely voter is how the Democrats got the results they did yesterday, so I’ve ceased being surprised by all the claims on this board that it’s billionaires and the men who love them that made everything happen yesterday.Report

      • Avatar zic in reply to zic says:

        so I’ve ceased being surprised by all the claims on this board that it’s billionaires and the men who love them that made everything happen yesterday.

        I wasn’t claiming, I was questioning. I’ve heard endless commentary about the women’s vote, about what women want. The black vote. The rural vote.

        But here, there’s a group that’s relatively well educated and successful; and most particularly, a group that’s been raised to the notion that they’re supposed to partake of the American Dream; the entrepreneurial class, if you will. What I wonder is why their motivations are off limits, when my own sub-groups are full bore what-makes-them-tick material.Report

      • Avatar Kolohe in reply to zic says:

        So instead of rejecting the false framing that ‘women want this’ and ‘black people want that’ (and ‘47% of the people who will vote for the President no matter what.. who are dependent on the government’) you wish to expand it to everyone?Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to zic says:

        @zic

        I am not getting what you are saying. It seems to me that white men with graduate degrees are really likely to enter the 1 percent or 10 percent but they are the ones who end up voting majority Democratic (not Republican) along with white men without high school diplomas.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to zic says:

        I don’t think they’re thinking much in terms of being the 1 or 10%. Speaking purely anecdotally about people I went to high school with and conservative students I’ve had, I think a lot of them dream of being small business owners. Not getting rich at it, just being their own boss. Regulation, regardless of its net value, is much harder for small businesses to comply with. Just the other day, for example, there was an article about proposed FDA regs intended to reduce incidents of food borne illnesses that targeted handling of produce at the farms. Not a bad goal, but small farmers freaked out because these regs were something an ADM or Cargill could afford to comply with, but maybe not a family farmer.

        I’m not suggesting that explains all of it. But I think that massively dominated dreams of being in the economic elite.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to zic says:

        @james-hanley

        Re: Small Business and Regulation

        So we might be getting into historical issues here because IIRC, the small business owners and the lower-middle class have always tended to be conservative. This is true in the United States and Europe. Marx had more contempt for small-business owners and the petite bourgeois than any other group or most other groups.

        The trick here is how do you stand up for the rights of workers and employees while not scaring small business owners too much? The answer is you might not be able to.

        I still think legislation protecting the civil rights of minorities is more necessary than not and this includes for employment discrimination. You also need to allow private suits because the government is not going to be handle all wage and hour and other work place claims on their own. I also think worker’s compensation and workplace safety laws are more necessary than not.

        So this goes and proves Loomis and Marcotte right more so. The GOP will always be able to play the business regulation game better and harder. The Democratic Party should swing left and go for employees and workers rights.*

        *I still expect many Democratic types to go for the business vote instead of the worker vote.Report

      • Avatar zic in reply to zic says:

        I skimmed through a decade’s worth of small business writing in my portfolio. While this is anecdotal, based on my reporting experience, a few things jumped out at me.

        First, women tended to talk about the challenges regulations created for their specific business, men about the challenges of regulation for business in general.

        But.

        Men tended to bring stories to me when they sought regulatory change that would give them competitive advantage; women less so.

        More misinformation came from men (faked degrees, pointing out ‘problems’ of competitors, etc., and claims of success in businesses that were actually falling apart); men also tended to be less willing to discuss the challenges their businesses faced. Women, on the other hand, were much quicker to call out perceived violations of existing regulations by competitors, and to express frustration that the systems in place didn’t take those things as serious problems.

        I’ve never reviewed my work in this way before, but I got a sense of women trying to figure out how to succeed in the environment they found themselves in vs. men trying to shape the environment so that they could succeed.

        Perhaps that is the difference we’re seeing in voting patterns?Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to zic says:

        Yes, re: history, Marx, and the difficulty of appealing to labor and business owners both. Possibly, to the rest (not arguing those parts, just don’t think I know).Report

      • Avatar Gabriel Conroy in reply to zic says:

        So we might be getting into historical issues here because IIRC, the small business owners and the lower-middle class have always tended to be conservative. This is true in the United States and Europe.

        I’m aware of a historian who would disagree.Report

      • Avatar DavidTC in reply to zic says:

        @james-hanley
        I think a lot of them dream of being small business owners. Not getting rich at it, just being their own boss. Regulation, regardless of its net value, is much harder for small businesses to comply with.

        And a lot of what motivates conservatives is somewhat misunderstanding the levels that things work at all. That’s not to say regulations can’t be burdensome, but a lot of conservatives seem to be unaware that, for example, a lot of regulations don’t kick in until you’ve got 15 employees, or do $X amount of business, or something. Their concerns about regulations are *legitimate*, and they can really cause problems for small businesses, but by the time they actually reached a point that they’d have to deal with the regulations, they’ve basically already made it to the level they’re imagining.

        The hard part is getting anywhere *close* to the point that regulations kick in, which, statistically, almost no small business does.

        And the same thing works at a personal level, also. I’ve run across middle-class white people worried about the estate tax. And I’m standing there thinking…you own approximately a third of a $300,000 house and the bank owns the rest. I pretty sure you won’t be paying estate tax.

        It’s not helped that the media tends to be moderately wealthy, and at the least tends to live in cities where their paycheck (and cost of living) are higher. So they report on things that effect people making $75,000 as relevant issues, when in actuality 80% of their viewers would not be effected by it. They report on things that effect people making $400,000 as an issue of the well-off, instead of the rich. Their baseline is skewed. (And this is ignore the media that does that *deliberately*.)

        But, anyway, the ‘White conservatives all dream of being rich’ is an over simplification. It’s closer to ‘White conservatives all dream of being upper-middle class, and they’re somewhat misinformed about the burdens of that.’Report

    • Does the LGM link have a source for that stat? Sounds right, but would like it for future reference.Report

  10. Avatar James Hanley says:

    When in Rome basically and this means respecting that people in liberal places like the Bay Area and Portland do not like open carry.

    Without going quite as far as arguing that open-carry is a constitutional right, this unavoidably reminded me of the conservative arguments that pornography’s legality ought to be based on community standards, and their argument that religion in public schools ought to be ok as long as the majority in the community support it.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to James Hanley says:

      @james-hanley

      Well doesn’t this make an argument against decentralization? 🙂

      Rights have to be centralized to have any meaning or we will be a very weird country.

      I would say that there is a difference because viewing and buying pornography is usually a very private act (though I have seen people watch it in public at Starbucks). Wearing a gun around is very public act and in my experience generally is meant for someone to show what a bully they are or to “enlighten” the rest of us.Report

  11. Avatar Dand says:

    Three thoughts if I have time I’ll post more later:

    1) Most working and middle class white they motivation for doing so is in large economic. While there is debate among economists in the effects of immigration on native born earning their thought process isn’t crazy. Most upper middle class and above liberals are very dismissive of these concerns.

    2) A large number of liberals born after WWII seem to believe that working class white are a bunch of Archie Bunkers who are holding America back.

    3) Among upper middle class liberals there seems to be a belief white people who achieved less than them are loser while minorities who achieved less than them a victims.

    4) Videos like this don’t help:Report

    • Avatar Dand in reply to Dand says:

      BTW Alexandra Pelosi followed up that video by mocking blacks at the welfare office in NYC (imagine the outrage of one of John Boehner’s children made that video):Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Dand says:

        Alexandra Pelosi is (while almost certainly liberal) is something of a free agent, or free spirit anyway. I found Journeys With George to be reasonably sympathetic to GWB on a personal level (politically it was pretty mum).Report

    • Avatar greginak in reply to Dand says:

      3- That is far more a convenient stereotype and R messaging then the truth.

      Those don’t really explain why D’s spent so much political capital trying to get health care reform which benefits those poor whites, or fought R’s to extend unemployment benefits or fight to keep the safety net together.Report

      • Avatar Dand in reply to greginak says:

        That went in the wrong place let’s try again

        3- That is far more a convenient stereotype and R messaging then the truth.

        I’m around these people all the time don’t tell me it’s not true.

        Those don’t really explain why D’s spent so much political capital trying to get health care reform which benefits those poor whites, or fought R’s to extend unemployment benefits or fight to keep the safety net together.

        They might favor policies that help those people but on a personal level they hate them.Report

      • Avatar LWA in reply to greginak says:

        I’m going to half agree with Dand here.

        There is a class divide in America, even among liberals. And class, as much as race, explains a lot of behavior.
        For instance, what DougJ at balloon Juice calls “totebaggers” the upper income liberals who listen to NPR, (in my experience) may pride themselves on their liberal outlook, but they also have little empathy or understanding of the working class, on a personal level.

        The concern for the working poor tends to be an abstract thing, and is easily swamped by closer more immediate concerns such as capital gains taxes. This explains the indifference of the media (almost all of whom are totebaggers) to issues like the minimum wage.

        The entire DLC Third Way stuff was an attempt to make the New Deal compatible with conservative ideology, or at least erase the inevitable costs associated with a government that defended the interests of workers (There is a Third Way! We can have nice things, AND low taxes! Win-win! Synergy!).Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to greginak says:

        Greg, we have a few #3s here.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to greginak says:

        @lwa

        I agree and disagree.

        By all accounts, I am a totebagger. But I’ve seen a lot in the liberal totebagger media over the past two years about income inequality and I think the reporting is sincere and true like the piece in the New York Times about the troubles wrought by swing-shifts and clopening on working mom.

        I think it is easily possible to have sympathy and compassion for people even if you can’t relate to their experience directly.Report

      • Avatar Dand in reply to greginak says:

        @saul-degraw

        The issue is being concerned about income inequality of the very poor the issue is how you relate to people who are below upper middle class on a personal level. I live in a neighborhood that’s about 70% non-white*, and I often get interesting responses when I revel this fact the people who are in theory more liberal than me. Would you personally ever consider living in neighborhood of primarily blue collar workers?Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to greginak says:

        @dand

        When I lived in Brooklyn, I was between a street filled with boutiques and a street with a huge public housing complex.

        My current neighborhood in San Francisco is an equal mix of bougie and reminders of when this was one of the most dangerous parts of the city.

        And what is interesting to me here is how we are really just talking past each other and which group is considered deserving of most sympathy. As I said above to James, I don’t know how one defends the interests of blue-collar or lower-middle class small business openers while also protecting workers from things like clopening which really does drain physically and emotionally.Report

      • Avatar Citizen in reply to greginak says:

        What is the republican totebagger called? I figure we are about to see some of that.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak says:

        “Fiscally Conservative, Socially Liberal”, I think. I’m going through my databanks and the only term I’m coming up with for these guys is “RINO”.Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to greginak says:

        “Country Club Republican”Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to greginak says:

        This seems like a fun game. I wanted to play, but damn if I can think of any significant group on the contemporary political landscape who are actually fiscally conservative.Report

      • Avatar Kim in reply to greginak says:

        jr,
        Bear Hunters?
        “Privatize the Profits, Socialize the Losses?”Report

      • Avatar Kolohe in reply to greginak says:

        I think most people are getting the axes wrong for “Country Club Republican” and “Rockefeller Republican”. (The latter of which was never really a thing imo as much as people think it was). They were and are generally socially *conservative* – they were Republican as a reaction to the changing role of women and minorities in America – but are not as orthodox on economic conservatism, having both a sense of noblesse oblige and a predisposition for government being involved in private sector business (just on business’s terms)Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        I think most people are getting the axes wrong for “Country Club Republican” and “Rockefeller Republican”.

        As long as they’re sharp, they should do just fine.Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to greginak says:

        Well, if I’m wrong about CCR’s, so’s Wikipedia, which describes them more or less as I do.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak says:

        Perhaps there is a bad moon on the rise.Report

      • Avatar DavidTC in reply to greginak says:

        Will is right, and Kolohe is half right.

        Rockefeller Republicans are socially conservative (But not necessarily religious-based), fiscally liberal-ish. They supported unions and infrastructure projects and stuff.They are (were?) basically the opposite of ‘Goldwater Republicans’. People used to call themselves this.

        Country Club Republicans are fiscally conservative, but socially…well, not ‘liberal’, but not actually conservative either. Fiscally conservative, socially apathetic. Depending on who you ask, these are either the friends of the 1%, or the 1% themselves. And no one calls themselves this, it’s a pejorative.

        At least, that’s what I understand the terms to mean. Or that they used to mean…I’m not certain ‘Rockefeller Republicans’ really means anything anymore.Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to greginak says:

        When Country Club Republican was a thing, the “social liberal” aspect mostly meant “Pro-choice (especially if it’s my daughter)” Today it would more likely mean “Pro-choice and pro-SSM” along with maybe “and embarrassed by the evangelicals.” It is correct to say that they weren’t particularly socially liberal – most likely conservative on crime issues that were a bigger deal back then – but “socially liberal” was kind of a part of the kitsch.Report

      • Avatar ScarletNumbers in reply to greginak says:

        @dand

        Missing footnote?Report

  12. Avatar greginak says:

    Will, Jay- I had a response to the thread up above but i think the tubes monster ate it so i’ll jump down here quickly. If i’m misremembering the Colo gun issues then thats on me. There were recalls which are a pretty powerful message. In general though the pro gun crowd has won. There is little or no national level push by D’s to do anything on gun control. There was a ballot measure in WA which passed but i don’t know much about it. The pro gun crown has won yet acts as if they are about to be buried. Heck we have debates about people openly carrying guns into quick service burrito parlors now. The Overton window has been moved really far.Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to greginak says:

      Greg, the recalls were this last September (!) and the laws were passed in March of 2014.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to Jaybird says:

        Jay, Well my memory was a bit off which i can’t, yet, blame on legal pot here. However i think my overall point still stands. The Pro gun side has won and won and won and the gun control side has little to show and nothing much at the national level. We are at the point where there are just as many pixels spilled on open carry as anything else. Yet the pro gun side is close to hair on fire panic mode at least based on NRA ads.Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Jaybird says:

        Wait, the recalls came before the laws were passed?Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Jaybird says:

        Like, two months ago. (It feels like longer but…)

        Greg, I’m just saying that the Democrats were still passing gun laws in 2014 and keeping them on the books. I don’t know that we’re quite yet to the place where we know that the Democrats won’t keep trying to pass them.

        At the very least, I’d like to get, oh, two years out from the last time they were attempted before we start saying “Yeah, Democrats have learned to not touch that particular third rail. They’ve decided that spending political capital on ending the death penalty would be a better use of their time.”Report

      • Avatar Jesse Ewiak in reply to Jaybird says:

        I’ll believe we should stop touching that “third rail” the moment our murder rate is closer to the rest of the Western world than closer to large portions of the undeveloped and partly developed world.

        BTW, we here in Washington successfully touched the third rail and passed background checks pretty easily.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Jaybird says:

        Jesse! Don’t tell me! Tell Greg!

        I agree with you!Report

      • Avatar Michael Cain in reply to Jaybird says:

        Two Democratic state senators that were recalled in special elections in September in which the usual mail-in ballots were not allowed, and Republicans were elected in their place (one by a reasonable margin, one narrowly). Both of those Republicans lost to Democrats in the general election this week.

        Prior to the laws being passed last spring, closing the background check loophole was polling at around 80% support statewide. The law that got the Democrats in trouble was limiting magazines to 15 rounds.Report

  13. Avatar Dand says:

    3- That is far more a convenient stereotype and R messaging then the truth.

    I’,m around these people all the time don’t tell me it’s not true.

    Those don’t really explain why D’s spent so much political capital trying to get health care reform which benefits those poor whites, or fought R’s to extend unemployment benefits or fight to keep the safety net together.

    They might favor policies that help those people but on a personal level they hate them.Report

    • Avatar greginak in reply to Dand says:

      Ohhh so you are around which people?

      I’m around professional middle/upper class libs all the time. Never heard this hatred you speak of. In fact several of the middle class libs i know best were poor and working class as kids and adults and don’t actually throw darts at pix of poor people at the merlot bar.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        Only because there’s no merlot bar in Alaska, because there aren’t enough upper middle class liberals to support one. 😉Report

      • Avatar Dand in reply to greginak says:

        Ohhh so you are around which people?

        Bobo/hipster types I doubt you have many in Alaska.

        Never heard this hatred you speak of.

        Ask a Manhattan liberal what they think of living in Omaha, or Howard Beach.

        In fact several of the middle class libs i know best were poor and working class as kids and adults and don’t actually throw darts at pix of poor people at the merlot bar.

        The ones from poor backgrounds are less likely to thin that way it’s the ones that were upper middle class growing up that think this.Report

      • Avatar Dand in reply to greginak says:

        The people i know who hold these attitudes would never even consider moving to Alaska.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to greginak says:

        You win this round Hanley. I tip my moose hide fedora at you.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        How can I get one of those? I’ll pay a finder’s fee!Report

      • Avatar Saul DeGraw in reply to greginak says:

        @dand

        I’ve talked about this before but as a New Yorker who currently lives in San Francisco.

        1. How many of those people were born in places like Omaha and fled as soon as they could and for a variety of reasons?

        I know a lot of LGBT people still flee to the Bay Area because of homophobic experiences and feeling like bullied outsiders in their small towns. There is a long history of Midwesterners fleeing to New York for cultural and artistic reasons. I mentioned this in my essay on Partyism and whether it is a problem. I knew a lot of people who fled to NYC because they always felt like their midwestern hometowns were cultural and economic wastelands. The most die hard New York parisans tend to be born in other places and fled to NYC.

        FWIW I almost took a year long internship with a theatre company in Juneau called the Perseverance Theatre Company. The only reason I did not take it is that I applied to late to get the weekly stipend.

        More anecdotally, I know a few Bay Area liberals who moved to rural areas to start their own farms and/or to work as commercial fishers.Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to greginak says:

        James….ahhhh HAA, now the ice worm has turned…advantage Burns…..no wait….me…. Actually i knew a guy years ago who made all sorts of hats out of moose and various other fur bearing critters. But don’t’ know where he is now. However if you are interested in some genuine Alaska duct tape underwear i might be able to look into it.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        Bah, I’ve watched the Red Green Show enough to make my own duct-tape tighty-whities.Report

      • Avatar Dand in reply to greginak says:

        @saul-degraw for the record I’m from an area near Boston that culturally and economically similar to Staten Island.

        1. How many of those people were born in places like Omaha and fled as soon as they could and for a variety of reasons?

        There are lots of reasons why people would leave but a lot of people have very negative attitudes towards the residents of those places. That’s what drives me crazy. That said Omaha is a fairly large city with a growing economy.

        There is a long history of Midwesterners fleeing to New York for cultural and artistic reasons.

        That’s fine as long as you don’t have a negative view of people that live in the place you left.

        I knew a lot of people who fled to NYC because they always felt like their midwestern hometowns were cultural and economic wastelands.

        If it’s economics fine; I’m not sure how to interpret “cultural wasteland” other than “those stupid rubes don’t share my superior tastes”. There is nothing that annoys me more than elitism.

        The most die hard New York parisans tend to be born in other places and fled to NYC.

        Really most native new Yorkers (yes I know some) tend to think of all transplants as non-New Yorkers, there was a similar attitude towards upper middle class transplants where I grew up outside of Boston.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to greginak says:

        Oh man, I love The Red Green Show. Crazy Canadians.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        Saul,

        “fled” “flee,” “cultural wasteland.” Think about those terms and what they signal to people who like those regions.

        I remember once in Oregon, standing in line for something or other, I heard the person behind me say something about being from the Midwest. I turned around, smiled, and said, “me, too, where?” The response, whatever state was mentioned, concluded with, “thank god I got out, the people there are horrible.” I turned my back immediately.

        I grew up in a small farm town, I lived in Haight-Ashbury, I lived in L.A. county, and I lived in Eugene, Oregon. It was great for me to get out of the small town and see other places, but I don’t mind being back in a small town, living next door to a janitor and a factory worker who rides a hog and likes the Blue Man Group. I’ve been in 47 states, and I’ve been in Dubai, Beirut, and Damascus. There are great people and shitty people everywhere. I like to bag on Texas, but I’ve known some really great people from that state. I’ve known both generous and intolerant people in small town, and generous and intolerant people in big cities.

        I’ve ripped on a student who’d never been out of the Midwest but who sneered at California for being full of nothing but fruits, nuts, and flakes, and I’ve ripped on city folks who’ve never been any place smaller than San Francisco who’ve sneered at flyover country.

        I’m going to go out on a limb and say I know the cities and the rural areas both much better than 99% of the people you know. Your words about rural areas are repeatedly insulting and devoid of any first-hand knowledge of the areas about which you speak. It is most illiberal and intolerant, exactly on a par with the rednecks sneering at elitists that so offend you. Every time you return to this line of discussion I wonder what would be the response if I started speaking so condescendingly of New York Jews. Because, brother, you are talking about my people, and while they are far from perfect, and while I’ve met just as good of people in the city as I have in my old farmtown, they’re not worthless cultureless scum, and I tire of hearing you insult them in a manner that is almost indistinguishable from racism.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        Let me add this. The town I live in is small (20,000), and the biggest city in the county by a factor of 15, 30-45 minutes from the closest cities (Toledo, and Ann Arbor, if you call it a city), 1 1/2 hours from Detroit. We’re rural. And we’re conservative. Our Congressman is a religious right winger, and our state Rep is a tea partier.

        30 years ago in this kind of area it wasn’t safe to be gay. Today, I know a number of openly gay people in our town, and there are openly gay students in the high school. One of the folks I know is an actor and director who lived in New York for years, then moved back here. My daughter informed just yesterday that in the high school one of the “male” students came out as female, and the school administration just calmly made arrangements for her to be able to begin using the women’s restroom. No fuss.

        Is it paradise for gay people? No, but it’s not the hell you imagine it to be. Meanwhile, in New York.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to greginak says:

        @james-hanley @dand

        “I remember once in Oregon, standing in line for something or other,”

        I didn’t think libertarians stood for that kind of Communist thing!

        And Glouchester? Lowell? for Dand obviously.

        My word choices were extreme and probably wrong to a certain extent. They are also picked because I know a few people who were horribly, horribly bullied in their small towns for being different and bookish/arty and not really into sports and I sympathize with them and don’t really see why they should look back at their towns with sympathy based on how they were treated. Maybe they shouldn’t treat all small towns via collective punishment but I think I understand their experience.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to greginak says:

        @james-hanley

        I think you are being overly defensive here. Do you think that sort of no fuss thing would have happened if it weren’t for thirty plus years of gay agitation for civil rights. Most of which happened in big cities. There are plenty of cities and inner-ring suburbs where the same thing would happen as happened in your daughter’s school. And homophobic attacks can happen anywhere as can attacks based on race, gender, religion, etc.

        You’ve mentioned with sympathy how the Jewish professors at your college live in Ann Arbor because it has a higher Jewish population because of the University of Michigan.

        New Yorkers can be horribly provincial (and I’ve gotten defensive about being from Long Island as well and having people in NYC be snide towards me). San Franciscans can be horribly provincial. People from Alabama can be horribly provincial. I don’t think I’ve claimed otherwise. I am not defending people who said they fled Omaha for NYC but just noting their view point to defend New Yorkers. I know native New Yorkers and San Franciscans who would be considered as nice as midwesterners.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        Saul,

        They don’t have to remember their towns fondly. Yes, some people get treated badly for being different. Yes, some people itch for the greater excitement of the city. And they should go there. Everyone should, ideally, have the opportunity to live where they are happiest.

        I’m only saying that your repeated damning of everything outside the urban ring lumps everyone and every place together into one presumed horrible hellhole. But lumping all rural people into a single class labeled “bigoted assholes” really isn’t any different than lumping all Jews together as “shylocks.” And racism, homophobia, sexism, and ignorance of high culture exist among some people in the city as well.

        Just, stop, please. It’s not just irritating, it’s very offensive. We’re real people out here, not stereotypes.

        Hell, all that time I was a bike messenger in San Francisco, I was still a country boy at heart. My best friend grew up on a farm in Iowa, became an executive in the shipping industry living in Seoul, Korea, and now teaches at a community college back in his home state and lives in a town of less than 500 people, where he’s happy as a hog in slop. And when he works up enough time off, he goes back to Asia and wanders around for a while. Some of us who leave, and who need to leave when we’re young, come back, because we recognize there is goodness here.

        Tell me, do you leave your doors unlocked? There’s almost always a door unlocked in my house. We could get robbed, it’s not impossible. But in 8 years in this house it’s never yet been a problem.

        How well do you know your neighbors? If you had a kid, would your kid be able to run to their door in an emergency, knock on it, and know they would be recognized, known by name, and welcomed in to get all the help they needed? (I know that sometimes occurs in the city, but I’ve hardly ever known it to not occur in small towns.)

        Just stop with the bigotry, please. I like you, and meeting you for dinner in San Francisco made me like you better. But this makes me like you much less.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        I think you are being overly defensive here

        Dude, folks here have repeatedly pointed out how defensive you are about comments about coastal elitists. Is this a special privilege reserved for you? You keep damning my friends and family, and, yeah, that makes me a bit defensive.

        I’ll rip on them, too, but there’s the classic insider-outsider thing going on. You don’t have status to say these things and get away with it.Report

      • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to greginak says:

        @james-hanley

        I’m sorry. I actually like a lot of small towns and can see living happily in the Hudson Valley and Western Mass. I personally like being fairly close to salt water/ocean though. I thought the article I think small towns in the Northeast and Northwest are quite romantic looking in many ways and quite and peaceful. I thought the Daily News article was a bit of a unfair dig though.

        I grew up in a very safe suburb of NYC and we still locked our doors and alarmed at night. My parents currently own a house up a very steep hill (and the hill is off a side-road) in the East Bay and they lock and alarm at night. They don’t have to. No one is getting up and down that hill easily to burglarize but they do. Even if I lived in a small town, I would probably lock my doors at night but would probably keep a window open for fresh air.

        I liked having dinner with you too.Report

      • Avatar Will Truman in reply to greginak says:

        Moving away from the water was really, really tough. Even though I’m not a boater, I have a lot of memories that involve a pier. I did find that if I’m away from water, then mountains make a decent substitute. (Put me in the Pacific Northwest, with both, and wow… but ugh, cost of living.)

        When we were last looking at opportunities, one of the most perfect places I found was Sioux Falls, which has neither water (in sufficient quantity) nor mountains. I kind of grumble at how difficult it was to get over that. Especially when it met my wife’s and my own divergent needs: Enough people for me, few enough people for her, good jobs, low taxes, access to airports. It was still gonna be a tough sell, though.

        (Where we are now actually works surprisingly well. Small town but an hour and a half from two major cities and within an hour of smaller cities, mountainy terrain, near rivers. Not thinking we’re going to stay, but it does check off a lot of boxes.)Report

      • Avatar greginak in reply to greginak says:

        City people have been looking down on country folk and country folk have been looking down on city people for, approximately, ever. Its what people do. Oh it’s stupid and irritating but still, its the way people are. I see each sneer as wrong headed. Neither started it and both like to blame the other. Trying to say its just those liberals or square fly over state types do it just missing boat. People do it every wear. There are good things about all places, its part of the art of life to appreciate the place you live and figure out how to find the best place for you.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        @will-truman
        I know what you mean about water. For me, though, rivers are almost as good as being on a big lake, so I think Sioux Falls would be a fine place. YMMV.

        @greginak
        I agree. I was thinking last night about all the stories about rubes being taken in by city slickers, and all the stories about city slickers being bamboozled by the surprisingly canny rubes, and about all the stories of country mice scared by the big tough city mice, and about city folks scared by the strange tough rural folk. But it really is a bit like racism or sexism, and we’d come down pretty hard on folks on this blog for that. I think it’s both true and perfectly sufficient to say that country life wasn’t suitable for Joe X so he eagerly moved to the city when he grew up without resorting to the pejoratives that make it sound as though nobody decent lives out in the rural areas.Report

      • Avatar Michael Drew in reply to greginak says:

        your repeated damning of everything outside the urban ring lumps everyone and every place together into one presumed horrible hellhole. But lumping all rural people into a single class labeled “bigoted assholes”

        So am I right to determine that the proximate provocation on this in this thread was Saul saying that some people he’s met in his cities have (presumably by their own account) fled the Midwest for more welcoming social, intellectual, cultural terrain? Which would mean that some people in the MIdwest mistreated them, so they left. I don’t see damning of everything outside the urban ring there, and I don’t see lumping anyone in with those who did the mistreating. Possibly there is an implied statement that for these people there was not enough intellectual, cultural, or professional freedom and opportunity to allow them to have a fulfilling life, so flight was necessary. Does anyone think this isn’t a common occurrence? Is that a damning of the MIdwest/non-urban ring? I don’t think the use of the words “flee” says anything about that part of the country other than things we have to acknowledge: it can be a bit culturally stifling, and sometimes people mistreat people there, and there’s not always a welcoming community of supports to find refuge with 9which is what distinguishes it from cities, where obviously mistreatment happens, but there is nearly always a community to take refuge in).

        I understand the context is other things Saul is believed to have said in other threads, but let’s be clear what he said in this thread. After all, maybe he’s improving.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to greginak says:

        You’re right, Michael Drew. Just because a person has said “nigger, nigger, nigger,” over and over doesn’t mean that when they say “urban problem” they actually mean anything bad by it.Report

      • Avatar j r in reply to greginak says:

        Only because there’s no merlot bar in Alaska, because there aren’t enough upper middle class liberals to support one. 😉

        Bobo/hipster types I doubt you have many in Alaska.

        Obviously, you guys have never been to Bernie’s Bungalow bar.Report

      • Avatar Michael Cain in reply to greginak says:

        Since I sometimes complain (and worry) about rural folks, I feel obligated to say something about why I complain (and worry). My views are no doubt affected in that I’ve spent most of my adult life around the edges of the Great Plains; “rural” means something different there than it does in the South or the Northeast.

        The cost of most of the trappings of contemporary society are inversely proportional to density. As a result, rural areas receive subsidies from the urban/suburban areas for electricity, telecom, roads, schools, medical services, etc, etc. I don’t complain about the subsidies per se, but I am annoyed by rural people who deny the existence of the subsidies. I worry that the subsidies will be cut off someday. Sometime in the last couple of legislative sessions Colorado updated its telecom laws; the rural members demanded increased subsidies, but didn’t get them. IIRC, the suburban Republicans wanted to reduce the subsidies but the urban/suburban Dems voted to maintain them.

        Rural areas haven’t produced enough jobs to employ all of their kids for decades. I worry about the rural areas when I listen to the questions companies considering relocation/expansion to Colorado ask the Governor’s Office of Economic Development. The companies are looking for, in approximate order of importance: skilled workforce (not just college, but skilled pipefitters, machinists, fabricators); good schools; QOL amenities like music, arts, outdoor recreation; communications network; transportation; low tax rates. I am annoyed at rural folks who don’t seem to want to hear any of that except low tax rates.

        I am a long-term energy pessimist. I believe that one of the things that needs to be done to deal with the issue is electrification of transportation. I worry about rural areas, where that’s a much harder problem (Exercise for the student: How do the suburbs survive $8/gal gas and diesel fuel? How many of those methods work in rural areas?). I am annoyed by rural people who fight tooth-and-nail against electrification anywhere because it doesn’t directly apply to them.Report

      • Avatar Citizen in reply to greginak says:

        No worries Michael, most rural areas are aware of the shet sandwich that this race to the bottom is leading to.Report

  14. Avatar LWA says:

    @citizen
    You appear to be making the NRA argument, that only good guys with guns, etc.
    Except that doesn’t address the problem.

    The point and purpose of the open carry advocates, what Damon referred to in his comment about how in the future no one will be alarmed by the carrying of weapons, is to normalize the carrying of weapons, to make it seem ordinary.

    Which is exactly the absurdity I am aiming at.
    There is no reason to carry a weapon unless deadly violence is reasonably imminent.

    It doesn’t matter if someone is carrying in a “frightful manner” or not. The mere fact that a deadly weapon is necessary, is and should be alarming.Report

    • Avatar zic in reply to LWA says:

      I take it further, @lwa

      I think people who believe they need to carry a gun in places where there are a lot of other people are yellow-bellied chicken shits. They are cowards.

      I do not need to carry a gun to be safe. I know that owning a gun increases the chances that I or someone I love will be unsafe. As a woman, I have a higher risk of being abused by my partner. As a wife and mother, I know there is a higher risk that someone in my family will use that gun to commit suicide. I have never seen any satisfactory evidence that guns are used by citizens to prevent crime in any statistically meaningful way, particularly when measured against the loss of life they cause.

      I think most gun-rights advocates think of hunting. But the nuts on the fringes who think they need to carry a gun to prevent rape and robery? They’re chicken shits. They’re so afraid that they’ll be raped and robbed that they fail to measure just how much danger that gun creates in their own household; and that’s what they should really be afraid of.Report

      • Avatar Citizen in reply to zic says:

        I’m glad you have it all figured out zic. Therefore we have no reason to converse further.Report

      • Avatar zic in reply to zic says:

        Ha. Do you have any idea I’ve had gun advocates ask my why I’m so afraid? They mean afraid of guns, of course. (And I’m not talking my grandpappy’s hunting rifle and deer season or taking out the occasional groundhog kind of gun, either, do don’t bother strawmanning those people with the dude who’ll get his wife a gun so that nobody can rape her or carjack her car; my friend’s daughter-in-law, down south, who keeps a loaded gun in her bedside table because of teh blacks, with two small children in the house.)

        The thing is, I’m not afraid. I don’t need a gun to feel safe; they do. And when you point that out? They get so insulted. It’s like because they’re the one who’s got a gun, I’m supposed to be too afraid to call them cowards; I’m supposed to show them the respect their due, and once in a while I get the feeling they’d be comfortable enforcing that respect with their gun instead of, you know, actually earning it.Report

    • Avatar Citizen in reply to LWA says:

      Damons probably right. I was just checking for middle ground…there isn’t any.Report