According to right wing firebrand Tomi Lahren, the fact that people who want gun control don’t know what the ‘AR’ in ‘AR-15’ stands for means they cannot demand gun control. She tweeted this breathlessly idiotic statement on twitter yesterday:
Hey Lefties, “AR” does NOT stand for “assault rifle.” It stands for “ArmaLite rifle.” You want to take our guns but you don’t know jack about guns. See the problem?
— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) March 1, 2018
Lahren was then correctly raked over the coals by Twitter users who failed to understand why not having a military level knowledge of high powered assault rifles precluded them from asking for gun control:
"Civilians should not be able to buy ArmaLite rifles."
— Rez (@RezaVn19) March 1, 2018
Ohhhh it was ArmaLite! Can someone tel the dead kids they don’t have to be dead anymore? Whew Tammy! Thanks for clearing that up! You’re a modern MLK
— TaylorBold. (@TaylorBold) March 1, 2018
The name doesn’t have anything to do with it. The AR-15 was designed by ArmaLite for military use, making it an assault rifle, dummy.
— dylan (@dyllyp) March 1, 2018
Then, there was this stinging rebuke from a survivor of the Parkland massacre:
The problem is that you think people not knowing what AR stands for is a problem. But the real problem is that a 19 yo purchased an AR 15 legally, and then proceeded to kill my friends and classmates. Once again, please stfu tomi. https://t.co/ufD12jI4xk
— Kyra Parrow (@longlivekcx) March 1, 2018
Following Lahren’s logic, those who lose family members and friends by mass shootings only have a right to speak out about it if they understand the geeky terminology gun manufacturers use to name their weapons. This is what passes for intellectual conservatism in America — a 25 year old loud mouth lecturing parents who have lost their children on gun nomenclature.
Conservatives like Lahren have attempted to reframe the debate on gun control in this disgusting way for decades now, and finally it appears the tactics are failing to work. The uprising in America’s high schools may at long last tip the balance in favor of effective gun control that cannot be undone by right wing fear mongers.
Just don’t expect these guys to do anything about it.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.