Home / Trending / Gehrke: Even if you like weapons, Utah Gun Exchange’s tactics against March for Our Lives is a poor strategy

Gehrke: Even if you like weapons, Utah Gun Exchange’s tactics against March for Our Lives is a poor strategy

Every accountable gun proprietor — and there are literally thousands of them on this nation — is aware of that proudly owning a firearm is a severe accountability, so exercising that Second Amendment proper is to not be taken flippantly.

Neither is exercising a First Amendment proper to gather and protest.

Both issues are it appears that evidently misplaced at the homeowners of the Utah Gun Exchange, who appear to care little about exercising both proper in a good way.

Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune The Salt Lake Tribune workforce portraits. Robert Gehrke.

It has been provocative, to make sure. In New York, the landlord of the automobile, Bryan Melchior, used to be arrested since the turret-mounted gun on most sensible in their black automobile wasn’t obviously a copy, as required by way of town ordinance.

It used to be an unlucky (and admittedly cowardly) resolution by way of the Miller Group, but in addition comprehensible, in mild of the extremely charged setting, the inflammatory nature of the problem, and other folks from the Utah Gun Exchange who’re insistent on being a lightning rod in the ones bad stipulations.

The First Amendment completely promises the fitting of the Utah Gun Exchange other folks to talk out at the polarizing gun factor, no query. But simply because you CAN say one thing, doesn’t imply that you must.

For instance, Belchior most likely would were well-advised to not say: “The hostile environment created toward gun advocates in the Northeast is not unlike the hostile environments a black man would have experienced in the South hundreds of years ago.”

Yes. Being a gun proprietor is precisely like being a slave.

Of route, the Utah Gun Exchange has a proper to take a look at to prepare a protest to the Florida teenagers pushing for new gun restrictions. But their tactics — reputedly supposed to intimidate and instigate — are doing extra hurt than just right to their purpose.

That’s now not simply my opinion.

Charles Hardy is coverage director of Gun Owners of Utah, which expenses itself as “Utah’s uncompromising” gun homeowners’ community. These guys were at the frontlines of Utah’s gun debate for many years they usually don’t fiddle.

Hardy, for instance, believes the Parkland scholars on the core of March for Our Lives are “well-meaning but misguided young people” co-opted by way of anti-gun advocates. But he additionally acknowledges gun homeowners have received their battles in Utah — way more regularly than they have got misplaced — by way of organizing and instructing, now not by way of intimidating.

“If they’re trying to intimidate or shout people down or grab someone else’s 15 minutes of limelight, it’s not what we’re supposed to do. Quite the contrary,” he mentioned. “I don’t think it’s a good idea to encourage folks of passion and disparate views to show up at the same place at the same time to yell at each other. … I think they’re horribly misguided.”

State Sen. Todd Weiler, R-Woods Cross, were given a 93 % score from the National Rifle Association when he used to be up for re-election in 2016 — he’s no softy on gun rights.

“I understand that organizations are very concerned that their Second Amendment rights are at risk,” he mentioned. “But this type of advocacy is not helpful, and is probably counterproductive.”

State Rep. Lee Perry, R-Perry, subsidized gun advocates “Constitutional Carry” bill just lately, which sought to present non-restricted adults the fitting to hold a hid firearm with out a allow. He additionally is a lieutenant within the Utah Highway Patrol.

“I’m going to stand up for my rights under the Second Amendment,” Perry advised me. “I’m willing to have a discussion about gun laws. I’m not afraid of that. But I’m not the kind to show up and do a reverse protest. … To me, that’s animosity and I don’t see anything productive out of it.”

And then there is Clark Aposhian, chairman of the Utah Shooting Sports Council and one of the crucial famous gun recommend in Utah’s Capitol. He says he doesn’t see the rest adverse within the Utah Gun Exchange’s movements and he additionally plans to wait the March for Our Lives tournament to provide a pro-gun point of view.

But if other folks need to take a look at to unravel the problem of gun violence, he mentioned, “it’s going to have to be done out of the limelight. It has to involve trust. … Otherwise it’ll just be a constant clash.”

“I think the big vehicle with the big gun on top and the t-shirts are to get attention,” he mentioned.

The Utah Gun Exchange surely were given consideration. National media has picked up on their antics and now they’re a point of interest of Saturday’s tournament. Like any trade, the Utah Gun Exchange flourishes on that unfastened exposure, so their stunt has most likely paid off.

They were given their consideration, to make sure, like a spoiled brat throwing a tantrum. And on Saturday, on the March for Our Lives tournament, anywhere it is held, we’re prone to as soon as once more see kids performing out, whilst those Florida youngsters anxious for their protection are talking up.

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