by Michael Krieger, Liberty Blitzkrieg:
I want to start this post off by taking a closer look at what Donald Trump actually said in his now infamous “2nd Amendment speech” yesterday. Here’s the part that generated all the controversy:
If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is. I don’t know. But — but I’ll tell you what. That will be a horrible day. If — if Hillary gets to put her judges — right now, we’re tied. You see what’s going on.
First of all, I agree that this is an incredibly stupid and dangerous thing for a Presidential candidate to say. So while I don’t think he should’ve said it, I also don’t think it’s the biggest deal in the world. Moreover, mainstream media and pundits across the land are unanimously interpreting it as a call for the assassination of Hillary Clinton. I didn’t read it that way at all.
For instance, he starts off his thought by creating a hypothetical scenario “if she gets to pick her judges.” So at that moment he seems to be thinking about a post-Clinton presidency; a time after which she has already picked the judges. If the judges are already in place, what would an assassination of Clinton accomplish? Absolutely nothing.
As such, I interpreted Trump’s subsequent words to reflect his opinion that “2nd Amendment people” might resort to armed resistance in the face of gun control measures implemented under a Hillary Clinton administration. While I don’t think this is a wise thing for him to publicly ponder, it’s not a remotely outlandish scenario. For example, should “assault weapons” be banned during a Clinton presidency, there remains that lingering issue of the millions upon millions of such weapons already in the public domain. Thus, if legislation is eventually passed to confiscate these weapons, I have no doubt that armed resistance to confiscation would be widespread. This isn’t a call to arms, it’s just stating what I believe to be an obvious fact.
However, if that was the point he was trying to make, he chose a really stupid way of doing it. If you’re going to use that type of language you’d better be really smart about clarifying exactly what you’re trying to express. Nevertheless, I still think it’s significant that Trump’s comments appear to be him blabbing about what response might be considered by “2nd Amendment people,” in a world after which aggressive gun control has already been passed and signed off on by the Supreme Court.
Further evidence to back up my interpretation can be found a few moments later when he says the following:
You know, when the bad guys burst into your house, they’re not looking about into Second Amendments, and, do I have the right to do this? OK, the bad guys aren’t going to be giving up their weapons.
But the good people will say, “oh, well, that’s the law.” No, no, not going to happen, we can’t let it happen. We can’t let it happen.
As you can see, he’s clearly thinking about a hypothetical post-2nd Amendment world. This is clear when he says “the bad guys aren’t going to be giving up their weapons.” Trump’s mind seemingly wandered into an imagined future world where gun confiscation is a reality, and he muses that only 2nd Amendment people can stop it. Personally, I don’t think a Hillary assassination ever crossed his mind, he was just being flippant about a potential future confrontation.
Moving along, what bothers me so much regarding the media uproar about his statements is not just that what he said seems to have been intentionally misinterpreted, but that we are focusing on words as opposed to actions. All the while, there are plenty of things Trump has actually done that make him a highly offensive candidate who isn’t really as anti-status quo as people think. I’ll give you two examples. First, let’s look at the man who Trump picked to head his campaign finance team: Steve Mnuchin.
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