Pro-gun demonstrators wanted to hold a mass shooting skit on the campus of the University of Texas on Saturday, but school officials told them they would be arrested and charged with trespassing. That didn’t discourage the groups – Come and Take It Texas and DontComply.com – from carrying out their demonstration at a nearby location. The turnout wasn’t particular inspiring – only about 20 supporters showed up – but the demonstration did succeed in garnering attention from the media, both local and national. It also drew a slew of anti-gun activists, who showed up to wave sex toys around.
The skit itself involved “shooting” people and outlining the mock victims in chalk.
“Our goal is to instill the importance of everyone to be able to defend themselves in any way they choose,” the group said on its website.
In defense of the low turnout, the group’s vice president – Jason Orsek – said they intentionally downplayed the publicity.
“In real events like this, you don’t know when they’re going to happen, you don’t know where they’re going to happen,” Orsek said. “We purposely did it that way.”
A new law will allow University of Texas students to carry their concealed handguns on campus if they are properly licensed. This has some worried that Texas schools will devolve into a kind of wild west atmosphere.
These Texas groups are known for their outspoken and sometimes extreme approaches to the gun debate, and even supporters of the Second Amendment have said that they do more harm than good for the movement.
That may or may not be true, but a cause like this needs people willing to stand on the fringes just as it needs people on the more moderate areas of the spectrum. It can’t always be about playing defense. You need people willing to go over the line every now and then just to move the conversation along. If the only “radicals” are those on the other side of the conversation, it moves the focus too far to the left.
It would be bad for the pro-gun movement if these groups grew to form the backbone of the cause. But as it stands now, these groups are invaluable. Maybe their skits are tasteless. Maybe they aren’t how most pro-gun Americans would like to be represented. But as long as our freedoms are under constant assault from Democrats, we need every pro-Constitution voice we can get. Better to go too far in your passions than to let the left win due to apathy.