OPINION: It was never about guns

Photo of Alexander Thornhill.

Photo of Alexander Thornhill.

Alex Thornhill

Just as the Free Speech rallies of Berkeley and Portland were not about free speech, the event that took place on September 29 was not about guns.

I remember the last gun rally that occurred on this campus last spring, where the organizers were able to stand around and get their video clips. Not much happened.

That is because it was actually about guns for that event.

It stopped being about guns the second that the organizers decided to invite far-right activist Joey Gibson. For those who do not know him, Gibson is the founder of the alt-right group Patriot Prayer, who have been involved with white supremacists groups like the Proud Boys.

This is where the event turned into something other than guns. This is where the rally turned into an attempt at becoming a far-right rally.

After Gibson was announced, more and more far-right groups began to join in, saying they’ll be attending. Including the neo-Nazi group American Guard. If this rally was about the idea of campus carry, why would these hate groups speak in support of the organizers? What do these ideas have to do with guns at all?

They don’t. Once they invited Gibson, they allowed a floodgate of hate to open for the rally and change the meaning behind it all.

Counterprotesters showed up on Sept. 29 to oppose white supremacy and the various hate groups that were supporting the gun rally. There were even some counterprotesters there who were armed.

In fact, there are many on the left that believe in arming the oppressed. Karl Marx in fact has a quote about the idea, “Under no pretext should arm and ammunition be surrendered; any attempt to disarm the workers must be frustrated, by force if necessary.”

So the idea that leftists want your guns is not the goal here. Personally, I could care less about your guns. I just hate Nazis and their ideology. In 2018, that is a controversial opinion.

The issue was never about guns, the group was never about guns. The sole purpose of organizations and groups like these are to create a show and then try to profit of it. Whether it is by having GoFundMe pages set up or selling t-shirts, the end goal of these events are to make a profit.

At the end of the day, we have to realize that they aren’t telling the truth about their intentions and their goals for whatever it is they do. At the end of the day, they want your money and they want your attention.

Alex Thornhill is a columnist and co-chair of the Kent State chapter of Young Democratic Socialists of America. Contact him at [email protected].