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This is why the Dems and Repubs are the same party...

Source: Blue Oregon and Western Democrat
As the Dems expand their big tent they will include the following:

"At a recent Democratic Party of Oregon meeting, state leaders voted to approve the formation of the party's Gun Owners Caucus , which joins the party's Faith Caucus and Motorcycle Caucus, among others."

"The perception that Democrats are anti-gun also hurts the party badly among our natural constituencies like hunters, most of whom consider themselves environmentalists, and rural residents in general."

People with guns are a natural constituency? I don't see where killing the environment is helping it.

I do see however where human impact has caused a great deal of imbalance on the environment. Maybe killing just helps restore harmony.
Pacifing ourselves into powerlessness.... 24.Sep.2006 10:28

free cascadian

The concept that those of us who are left of center must also be anti-gun is silly at best, ignorant of history at worst.

First, it smacks of urban-centrism. When you live in an economically depressed rural area, as I do, your rifle puts food on the table that otherwise wouldn't be there. It provides my family and I with meat, with leather, and lastly with protection. When you live as far in the boonies as some of us do, if you need protection, you don't even bother calling the cops. Not that they're here to protect us (that's a different argument), but even if they were it would take them at least 2 hours to get here. As for environmental, taking a deer ain't ain't environmental. See, we actually still *have* functional ecosystems out in the hinterlands and we try our hardest to take care of it. If you'd like to assist us in that effort, you could help us a bunch by stopping the big logging companies, stopping the carpetbagging yuppies from extending their suburbs into prime farming area (making it next to impossible to pay for your land and farm fulltime), and cleaning up your own urban mess.

Secondly, it is ignorant of history. You honestly think that in an america where we are creeping closer and closer towards facism (and I would argue that it is already here) that it's a good idea for "enemies of the state" to voluntarily disarm? Yeah, right, any student of history knows how that turns out. Ask germans who opposed hitler and the jews of nazi germany how the gun laws of the weimar republic allowed the nazis to seize their weapons and render them toothless in the face of overwhelming oppression. Oh, that's right, you can't. Because the nazi's used the weimar gun registry to round up all the leftists and jews and murder them.

All one needs to do is look at the guns laws that have passed in the past 100 years and what they were in response to (example: National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Gun Control Act of 1968). It's almost always a response towards radical leftists or the poor or people of color arming themselves. Look at the states with the most restrictive gun laws (New York, New Jersey, Mass, Illinois, California). All places where wealthy white people live in close proximity to people of color and the poor. This isn't a coincidence this is state policy. It's why the NFA put on the 200 dollar excise tax for automatic rifles (no working class person in 1934 could afford to comply). It's why the GCA mandates background checks (not a lot of Black Panthers would be able to pass an FBI background check). Wow, funny how that worked out ain't it? Two guns laws that benefitted the state and disarmed those who opposed it... hrm... must have been an just a side effect, as opposed to the actually *purpose*.

I could care one wit about the democrats, they've rendered themselves impotant and haven't been the opposition in years (if ever). What I do care about is this pathological fear of looking at all the tools in the toolbox of resistance. We may never need them, and I pray to the goddess that the day we need them never comes, but to refuse to even entertain the idea that we should work to maintain a constitutionally protected right, smacks of priviledge, is ignores history and tactically, is plain old bad idea. In a country where peaceful resistance is ignored (or worse), where the media is controlled by the wealthy, where the government is unresponsive and unaccountable, where the elections are a sham and where there is no real opposition party, to *not* be in favor of keeping as many tools of resistance in our toolbox as possible is mind blowing.

obviously 'Pravda' has not done much environmental canvassing 24.Sep.2006 11:15

because

if you had,

you'd understand that there's frequently a strong correlation between hunting/gun ownership and respect for natural surroundings / "the environment". From a practical point of view I can see the campaigners' reasoning in the above strategy you mention.

(not always.... there's of course the hard-core fascist/ "let's have a spotted-owl barbecue" / gun-totin' shoot-first-ask-questions-later redneck variety....)

P.S. the Democrat party can fuck off and die as far as I'm concerned (and we'll see true results of this after Republican-owned-electronic-vote-fest in Nov.)

i'm sorry 24.Sep.2006 13:18

lyle

but i don't think i'll EVER understand how someone can, on one hand, say they love the environment, love the beauty of the animals that exist in the wild, and then as a symbol of their love for these animals, blow them away essentially. how does that rationally make any sense? it's delusional. what's wrong with going out in the wilderness and watching animals if you love their beauty so much? why do you have to kill them, repeatedly, unnecessarily? what part of your psyche are you repressing by finding such joy in killing? it is killing. and worse, it's killing a completely defenseless animal that had no intention of ever causing YOU harm. or even acknowledging your existence, really.

i'm not naive enough to think that, in some instances, animal populations don't need to be thinned out for ecological balance reasons. but the whole culture of essentially killing things (whatever those things are) is just so eternally disturbing to me.

quite frankly, the only way i can see things changing, for this culture to be diminished, is to call it out onto the floor and not appease it by trying to score cheap political points... as is obviously the case here.

you can say the same exact thing about the humanity of people who aren't hunters but who love guns because subconsciously they are lacking in self-respect and think owning a gun, damn the consequences, will make them feel better inside.

Natural Systems 24.Sep.2006 20:04

Verdant

I don't know if it's a good idea to condemn the idea of hunting animals for food. Humanity has had a long history of that sort of thing, and you can't separate it simply because we're so separated from nature that it seems morally reprehensible now. Aside from the natural disconnect, it's the sort of thing that drives the urban and rural populations further apart, despite the similarities that are present (Take a look at the Spanish Civil War; the anarchist groups primarily arose from the rural settlements, who favored egalitarianism, small-group politics and freedom.)

Personally, I'm a vegan. But I'm a vegan for environmental and health reasons. I'm also a vegan because I have the opportunity to do so. If I eat lower on the food chain, that means someone else gets to eat, period. But for 18 years of my life, I was an omnivore. Denying that part of my past, seeing it as inherently wrong, in an ethical sense, seems like spiritual suicide. That's where fundamentalism arises from. When the concept of hunting can be carried out in a sustainable manner, I'd probably take it back up, but for now, I'm good where I'm at.

Finally, an armed, informed and dangerous citizenry is what makes a government scared. Free Cascadian had a perfect example with the Black Panthers. Because they began policing their own neighborhoods, California (That lovely state of liberalism), passed laws banning the public possession of firearms except with permits (And you know where that goes).

The truth is, we are omnivorous. We have the capability to choose to kill for food, for survival. In this supermarket world, I don't have a need for it, and health-wise, it is possible to live a life without it. Until food supply stabilizes, I would advocate veganism. But it's not fair to condemn others for their choice of substinence, when it can mean the difference between malnutrition and healthy functioning. To go that direction means coercion, concentration of power and so on.

That said, the Democratic party leadership are indeed by-and-large fuckers, and I don't see much, if anything, good coming out of this.

free cascadian 24.Sep.2006 23:08

max

thanks for the info. very insightful.

More to the point 25.Sep.2006 05:16

Mike Novack stepbystpefarm <a> mtdata.com

More to the point than discussing this particular instance of the parties not differing on some particular issue is the question in general. The question whether there is a resonable expectation that if political factions do not disagree down the line on EVERY issue they sould/should be said to be "the same". Or whether we could/should do this even when the issue involved is the one WE consider most important (but they may not).

Does ANYBODY here consider "gun ownership" vs "strict gun controls" to be THE big issue in our society? Obviously not, so the particular example was silly. But the argument is not. Let's try another issue.

Capitalism --- well certainly both these parties agree on the merits of capitalism even though they may disagree in detail. Does that mean that they "are the same party". Well it does but only from a socialist perspective since the socialist considers socialism vs capitalims to be THE issue. To somebody else who has other fish to fry, the parties might be different as night and day. THAT is what I am trying to say here.

It makes no sense to utter "the parties are the same" EXCEPT when you add a statement "in regard to" -- making clear your point of view about WHAT issues are to YOU "the vital determining issues". To do otherwise is to be making a covert (and flase) argument that the "other" to whioc you are speaking is agreeing with your premises about "what it's all about". PLEASE -- I am not saying that you are wrong in your judgement about what is important, just that it is YOUR truth and you cannot proceed as if others agree with you WHEN YOU KNOW THEY DO NOT.

OK -- back to this case. CLEAR LYING (worse than what I just descrbed). I do not believe that the person who wrote the orginal argument believes "gun ownership" IS a driving force in American politics, one of the current "top issues". It COULD perhaps become one. If and when that happens we get to make statements about whether the two major parties are or are not "one" on THAT issue.

guns and abortion -- distractions 25.Sep.2006 18:55

SE Progressive

If the democratic party wants to save itself, it should stop making guns and abortion the only issues that separate themselves from the other big money party. These two things are distractions from very serious economic and militaristic issues.