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Steve Kerr on Chinese human rights abuses: What about gun violence in the U.S.?

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The competition has been stiff and there are still hours to go before close of business but I feel like this guy has already clinched the distinction of NBA China Cuck of the Week.

Congrats to the Warriors on their first title of 2019.

Also, I want to take this opportunity to thank Daryl Morey again for revealing how deeply unserious every woke dipsh*t in the league actually is about human rights and social justice.

Charles Cooke reframes the exchange: “Do you have views on mass concentration camps?” “No, but I’m pretty upset about the Bill of Rights.”

I’ve watched that clip three times and can only conclude that what we’re seeing is a Pavlovian response in action. The subject of injustice is raised and, like a well-trained dog salivating at the sound of a bell, this chump simply cannot help but think of gun violence and American abuses. A few days ago he pleaded ignorance when asked about China — he doesn’t know the history, it’d be unfair to comment without being fully informed, etc. But the media kept ringing the bell by asking him about human rights. He was destined to start drooling on himself eventually.

The best part — besides the classic whataboutist line, “none of us are perfect” — is Kerr noting that Chinese fans and media have never pressed him about injustice in the United States. Any theories about why that might be? Why wouldn’t inhabitants of a totalitarian state, which is right now carrying out a program of mass internment, be eager to start visiting westerners chattering about human rights?

You know who he sounds like here? Our “America First” president, who made a similar point in defense of his wish for warmer relations with Russia in 2015. “He’s running his country and at least he’s a leader, unlike what we have in this country,” Trump said of Putin in an interview with then-friend Joe Scarborough, adding, “I think our country does plenty of killing also, Joe.” Kerr should try that in his next interview. “At least Xi Jinping’s a leader.”

I think this makes Trump officially “woke” now. He long ago reached the fourth stage of NBA-style social consciousness that’s now been attained by Kerr: Woke; extremely woke; ludicrously woke; whataboutist apologetics for foreign fascism.

By the way, with the PR disasters now coming daily, the NBA is officially done talking about all this:

The National Basketball Association (NBA) said Friday it had cancelled all remaining press events for its current China tour, citing the “complicated and unprecedented” controversy over Hong Kong protests and free speech…

“We have decided not to hold media availability for our teams for the remainder of our trip in China,” the NBA said in a statement.

“They have been placed into a complicated and unprecedented situation while abroad and we believe it would be unfair to ask them to address these matters in real time.”

It’d be unfair to ask players to answer difficult and complicated questions like, “Are concentration camps bad?”

But don’t worry, there are still plenty of opportunities for the NBA to kiss Chinese ass. Russell Westbrook is reportedly being hailed as a hero in China today for showing up to a press conference in Japan dressed in a traditional Chinese coat. Maybe if the Rockets can convince James Harden to start wearing a Mao suit this flap with Morey will blow over.

By the way, you’ll be pleased to know that the NBA is perfectly capable of taking a moral stand on foreign affairs when the spirit moves them. In lieu of an exit question, try to guess which country has offended the Portland Trail Blazers’ strong sense of social justice. Right.

The post Steve Kerr on Chinese human rights abuses: What about gun violence in the U.S.? appeared first on Hot Air.

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Schumer lies: I don’t know of a single Democrat who supports Beto O’Rourke on gun confiscation

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He doesn’t know Kamala Harris or Cory Booker, both of whom support O’Rourke’s gun-grabber fantasy?

I mean, they’ve been in the room during Senate Democratic caucus meetings for years now.

Between their mid-single-digit presidential polling and their frequent absences from the chamber to campaign, I suppose it’s understandable that they’d slip Schumer’s mind. Or … is he deliberately misleading the public about this because he knows O’Rourke’s “take the guns” plea is a political calamity for gun-control and for the party?

When he says “any other Democrat,” does he mean any other Democrat *in Congress* or any other Democrat anywhere? Because each of those claims is a lie even if you exclude Booker and Harris. The Squad hasn’t spoken up about Beto’s plan yet, likely because they don’t want to risk giving his candidacy a boost with progressives that might undermine Bernie or Warren, but I’d bet good money that they’re all aboard with a mandatory buyback. How could they not be? Their politics is to take the maximalist left-wing position on every issue. That’s what Beto did.

If Schumer meant Democratic voters generally, well…

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Supporting confiscation is a safe-ish issue in very blue jurisdictions. In a national campaign with a purplish electorate, it’s not so safe, as O’Rourke is discovering. In a red state it’s political poison, of course, which explains why Joe Manchin from West Virginia sounds like he wants to fight Beto:

“Beto’s one human being,” Manchin said. “He gave his own opinion, OK? I think it was very harmful to make it look like all the Democrats. I can tell you one thing: Beto O’Rourke’s not taking my guns away from me. You tell Beto that OK?”

Eh. If Beto’s stunt at last week’s debate didn’t kill off the gun-control talks in Congress, Trump’s squeamishness about committing to anything would have. The Times has an update on that mysterious background-check proposal Bill Barr was shopping around on Capitol Hill yesterday. It came from the White House, yet Trump aides were adamant in telling reporters that the president hadn’t signed off on it or anything else. It was, in other words, a pure trial balloon, likely aimed at gauging how the right-most side of the Republican caucus would react to it. Answer: Not well.

Republicans who favor gun rights said they wanted more specifics, and several said it was pointless to even talk about Mr. Barr’s plan at this point. As the nation’s chief law enforcement officer, the attorney general will be a central figure in the debate over gun legislation, but senators agree that the president will have the final say.

“My question was: ‘Where is the president on this?’ And I asked this question directly: ‘Is this something the president supports?’ And they didn’t have an answer for that,” said Senator Josh Hawley, Republican of Missouri, who met with Mr. Barr on Tuesday evening. “That’s an important piece. If the president doesn’t support it, then there’s no point.”

And Senator Ted Cruz, Republican of Texas, who also met with Mr. Barr on Tuesday evening, warned against any legislation that “raised the specter of confiscation” and said he was not interested in a bill that would “restrict the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens.”

So, yeah, it’s not happening. Trump could almost certainly get the bill passed over Hawley’s and Cruz’s objections if he endorsed it but then he’d have other prominent Republican pols to his right on a nuclear-hot cultural issue. And that’s an uncomfortable place for President Populist to be.

Here’s Beto yesterday on CNN doing a little damage control by emphasizing that only “weapons of war” would be confiscated under his administration, not weapons designed for self-defense. That plan would last about five seconds after it was implemented, of course, as Democrats quickly realized that confiscating assault rifles will do next to nothing to reduce total gun violence in the United States.

The post Schumer lies: I don’t know of a single Democrat who supports Beto O’Rourke on gun confiscation appeared first on Hot Air.

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First post-debate poll: No bounce for Beto O’Rourke after call for gun confiscation

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I’ve been in suspense since Thursday night wondering how his call to take everyone’s AR-15 would play with the Democratic base. There’s nothing that might singlehandedly place a struggling candidate on voters’ radar like a passionate call for radicalism on one of the left’s top cultural priorities. Especially since Beto has the field more or less to himself in staking out this position. This isn’t a “Medicare for All” scenario in which one candidate (Bernie Sanders) calls for a bold policy stroke and the competition immediately begins lining up behind him to try to capitalize on the idea’s popularity with progressives. Even a rival as left-wing as Pete Buttigieg wanted no part of O’Rourke’s mandatory buyback scheme. Kamala Harris and Cory Booker have endorsed it, granted, but nearly 100 percent of the political and media energy behind the idea is coming from Beto.

Is this the gimmick that would finally spring him into the second tier in polling, at least?

Why, no, per Morning Consult:

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Four percent is a whisker better than O’Rourke has done in most polls lately, although he was at five percent in a CNN poll taken last week before the debate. His polling average has barely moved after this new result, from 2.8 percent yesterday to 3.0 percent today. The good news for Beto fans, I guess, is that the polling for the entire field apart from the top three is now such relentless garbage that he’s essentially tied for fourth place — along with everyone else. If the next few polls do show him with a modest bounce (e.g., he rises to seven or eight percent), that might be enough to land him by himself in the de facto second tier. And once that happens, the media is destined to start writing pieces about how *maybe* Beto’s poised for a big bounce if, say, Biden falters or whatever.

But for now? The gun-grabbing, the feel-my-passion profanity, it’s all added up to essentially nothing.

Another minor surprise here: Andrew Yang has also seen no movement in the polls despite his own newsy gimmick at the debate, announcing a $12,000 giveaway as a simulacrum of Universal Basic Income to 10 lucky entrants in his new contest. That was a shrewd stunt to help him expand his email list enormously, creating a new supply of potential donors, but I thought that Yang being onstage with the top tier and doing something flashy to promote UBI might get him a closer look from undecideds as the normal “un-politician” guy in the race. Nope. Three percent here, which is where he is in most polls.

As for the top tier, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren continue to duck each other but that may change soon. The Working Families Party, a lefty outfit that backed Sanders in 2016, endorsed Warren today; Berniebros are mad, alleging that the small group of national committee leaders may have handed the endorsement to her over the wishes of the party’s rank-and-file. (The party won’t release vote totals.) As we get closer to Iowa, pressure will build on the left for undecideds to choose one or the other in order to clarify who the consensus progressive choice is. It’d be unimaginable to the DSA crowd to have Biden win the early states narrowly because the left ends up split equally between Sanders and Warren.

One more note on Beto’s gun ploy. Trump is holding a rally in New Mexico tonight, seemingly a strange place for a Republican president to be. He lost the state by eight points in 2016; his approval rating there is now -13; both of its U.S. senators are Democrats; the governor is a Democrat; both houses of the state legislature are controlled by Democrats. What’s he doing there? Well, New Mexico is a better candidate than most other blue states to flip next fall. It’s still a long longshot, but between the libertarians who broke for Gary Johnson in 2016, the somewhat conservative trend among New Mexico Democrats, and the low cost involved to campaign in the state, it’s worth a little effort since it could potentially deliver a second term for Trump if he can turn it red. And there’s an X factor: New Mexico has an extremely high rate of gun ownership at nearly 50 percent, good for seventh among the 50 states. If Beto’s confiscation plan turns into a liability for Dems, odds are the effect would be outsized in New Mexico. Trump’s trying to take advantage. No doubt O’Rourke will be mentioned from the podium tonight.

The post First post-debate poll: No bounce for Beto O’Rourke after call for gun confiscation appeared first on Hot Air.

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Buttigieg: Yes, Beto’s playing into the hands of Republicans with his gun confiscation push

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I’m surprised to see him let O’Rourke get to his left on a cultural flashpoint this hot, especially since Buttigieg has spent the past few months urging Democrats not to let the right spook them by calling them “radicals.”

“If it’s true that we embrace a far left agenda, they’re going to say we’re a bunch crazy socialists,” said Mayor Pete in July. “If we embrace a conservative agenda, you know what they’re going to do? They’re going to say we’re a bunch of crazy socialists. So let’s stand up for the right policy, go up there and defend it.”

Well, if you’re a gun-grabber, that’s exactly what Beto’s doing. And if you believe the polling on gun control, most of the party is with him on buybacks. So why shouldn’t they follow the Boot Edge Edge approach to guns by “standing up for the right policy” and letting the chips fall where they may?

This is surprising in another way too: Buttigieg has worked hard to present himself as the face of generational left-wing change within the party. That was shaping up to be Beto’s role in the primary until Buttigieg swooped in this past spring and stole his thunder, bouncing out to a steady 5-8 percent in Democratic polling that O’Rourke himself hasn’t approached in months. Beto’s “f*** it, let’s confiscate assault weapons” pitch is an obvious attempt to reclaim some of that thunder by signaling to young lefties that he’ll fight unapologetically for their cultural priorities. You would think that would be Mayor Pete’s cue to go easy on O’Rourke on a question like this, e.g., “I’m not sure America’s ready for a buyback plan yet but I share Beto’s frustrations and want more aggressive action in Congress.” But no, he’s very clear here that he thinks this is a mistake, letting the perfect be the enemy of the good by giving Trump a reason to bail out of gun-control negotiations when there’s at least a glimmer of hope of passing red-flag laws or expanded background checks.

Even stranger, he almost (sort of) credits Trump and McConnell in his answer for engaging on the subject, claiming that they’re at least “pretending” to be interested in it. Rule one of Democratic politics in 2020: Do not credit Trump or McConnell with good faith in anything ever. Not even with “pretending” in good faith. Beto noticed that and slammed Buttigieg in a tweet, writing, “Leaving millions of weapons of war on the streets because Trump and McConnell are ‘at least pretending to be open to reforms’? That calculation and fear is what got us here in the first place. Let’s have the courage to say what we believe and fight for it.” Then for good measure he posted this clip replete with his signature love-your-passion profanity:

All Buttigieg means when he credits Trump and McConnell for “pretending” is that their pretense is evidence that they’re feeling meaningful political pressure to do something on guns. Even Republican leaders seem compelled to pander (a bit) to gun-grabbers right now by holding themselves out as open to proposals. Beto swooping in and demanding confiscation instead of background checks risks blowing that up by giving gun-rights supporters new reason to fear giving an inch to the left, which could kill any small momentum towards compromise. Even the lead sponsor on the House’s assault-weapons-ban bill, Dem Rep. David Cicilline, thinks Beto crapped the bed by taking the extra step towards outright confiscation. If gun-control legislation collapses in Congress, as everyone expects it will, I wonder how much blame Beto will take and whether that’ll kill any polling bounce he may or may not be getting from his call for a buyback.,

As for Mayor Pete, his caution here may be evidence that he’s turning more realistic about his chances at the nomination. He’s a man of the left but he’s also native to Indiana. If he doesn’t end up in a new Democratic president’s cabinet he’ll be stuck looking for routes to higher office in a reliably red state where gun confiscation would be destined to play poorly. His best opportunity may be to challenge Todd Young for Senate in 2022 *if* Trump wins reelection and the next midterms start shaping up to be even more Democrat-friendly than the last ones did. (That’d still be no guarantee in Indiana; remember that GOP challenger Mike Braun unseated Dem incumbent Joe Donnelly there last year, winning by six points.) A basic prerequisite for a statewide Democratic candidate in Indiana is *not* to be radical on guns, so that’s the box Boot Edge Edge is checking here. On this issue and maybe only on this issue, Beto’s the radical, not Mayor Pete. Maybe Indiana swing voters will remember.

The post Buttigieg: Yes, Beto’s playing into the hands of Republicans with his gun confiscation push appeared first on Hot Air.

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Beto O’Rourke: Police wouldn’t go door to door to confiscate guns under my plan

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The money quote: “Much like we don’t go door-to-door to enforce almost any law in the United States, in fact I don’t think we do that for any law in the United States, this would not be something that we would do.” Presumably he’d treat an assault rifle like any other form of contraband. No one will come looking for it, but if you’re caught with it in your possession, you’re cooked.

But I don’t know that he’s thought that far on the subject. He keeps coming back to the point that he has faith that Americans will comply with the law after it’s passed and surrender their AR-15s without a fuss, which is sweet and all but unrealistic. Some will comply. Most, perhaps. Not all. What happens one day when a cop pulls some guy over for speeding, sees that he has an AR-15 in the backseat, demands it, and the guy says no? If a shootout follows, how many cops nationwide will want to risk confronting people about their guns after that? Conversely, how many gun-control fans will begin demanding a more aggressive effort to seize contraband AR-15s than just waiting around and hoping owners hand them over?

Another hypothetical: There are so many assault rifles in circulation that it’s a fait accompli some will be used to carry out new mass shootings even after a buyback plan takes effect. What’s the political fallout from that when it happens? Gun-rights advocates will say, “See? We told you the buyback wouldn’t end mass murder.” Gun-grabbers will say, “See? We told you the policy of asking people nicely to give up their guns wouldn’t work.” What then?

To make the hypothetical extra zesty, imagine that a mass shooter turns out to hail from a rural area in a red state where local cops have effectively decided that they won’t enforce the buyback. Reporters sniff around and find out that no one caught with an AR-15 is being arrested by the sheriff’s office as a matter of policy. What’s the White House’s reaction to that? Does President Beto call for quadrupling the size of the ATF and sending agents out into those rural areas to compel compliance?

I think it’d end up like Prohibition, which is … not known as one of America’s shining policy successes.

Watch to the end of the clip below and you’ll see that he’s asked about Chris Coons’s criticism that Beto has set back the gun-control movement by pushing such a radical idea. I’m not a radical, O’Rourke insists, I’m where most Democrats are on this issue and it’s time our leaders in Congress caught up. Is he right? Some Dems agree with Coons that mainstreaming the idea of a buyback does the party more harm than good

By all accounts, Trump needs to run up the score in rural areas to win reelection next year. The 2020 outcome is expected to depend heavily on a trio of Rust Belt states — Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — that have large numbers of rural voters, many of whom are gun-owners or sympathetic to owners on this issue. And Democrats’ hope of winning control of the Senate rests on states with high rates of gun ownership, like Arizona and Texas…

“The lines like, ‘We’re gonna come and take your AR-15,’ just play into the fears that the NRA has been stoking, and a proposal like that is just going to make rural Iowa and I think probably rural areas elsewhere more red,” [Democrat Warren] Varley said. “I think that’s just a bridge too far for most rural folks, and it conjures up images of the government coming in and invading your home and images of big government trampling over the rights of individuals.”

…but then again, polls like this keep trickling out:

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Sixty-three percent of Democrats claim that it’s “mostly accurate” to describe the NRA as a domestic terrorist organization. Yesterday I flagged a WaPo poll from earlier this week that showed 74 percent of Democrats(!) favor a mandatory buyback. Last year after the Parkland massacre, one poll found 74 percent of Dems in favor of banning all semiautomatic rifles (not just “assault rifles”) while another found 82 percent support for banning all semiautomatics. Not just rifles — all semiautomatics.

They’re pretty farking radical. Which is not to say that Coons et al. are wrong: Getting crazy with the gun-control cheez whiz may play spectacularly well in California, say, while killing Democrats in Michigan. Guess which state is more important next fall.

Exit question via Drew McCoy: Isn’t Beto giving away the game here by stressing his belief that Americans will comply voluntarily with the law? People willing to surrender their weapons upon a lawful demand by the feds are by definition “law-abiding.” If you’re worried about mass shootings but unwilling to go door to door to look for assault rifles, it’s inevitable that virtually all of the people whom you end up disarming are people whom you didn’t need to worry about in the first place.

The post Beto O’Rourke: Police wouldn’t go door to door to confiscate guns under my plan appeared first on Hot Air.

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A Houston Woman Proves to Her Attackers and the Media that a Gun Is a Girl’s Best Friend

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Those who would take your guns from you like to pretend that the “good guy with a gun” scenario is a myth. Even the government disagrees with that, and you can find a myriad of stories detailing criminals being greeted with the business end of a firearm on the daily.

Just so that it doesn’t get completely swept under the rug, however, I want to highlight this recent story. It’s not about a “good guy with a gun,” but a woman with a gun.

According to KHOU-TV, a woman in Houston, Texas, was pulling into her apartment when a group of men descended on her car and attempted to get at her. The men thought they had the upper hand until the woman showed them how mistaken they were:

Houston police say the woman was pulling into her parking spot at the apartments when she noticed a group of men hanging out near the area of the mailboxes about 20 yards away.

As she parked her car, the men approached her vehicle and one of them reached into her passenger side window, which she had been trying to roll up. Police say the man had tried to grab the woman’s purse before she was able to pull out a handgun.

Police say the woman fired two shots, forcing the men to run from the scene. Then officers received a second call of a man who was found with a gunshot wound on the other side of the complex about 100 yards away.

The man was later transported to the hospital for two gunshot wounds and was last seen in surgery. The woman, meanwhile, will face zero charges after describing the men as being armed themselves.

And there you have it. Maybe those men would have taken her purse and that would have been the end of it, or maybe not. Maybe they intended to do a lot more than that. We’ll never know and that we don’t have to know is the best part of this story. The woman’s ability to defend herself with the best means possible is what kept this story from becoming tragic.

It’s sad that we have so many people in America willing to tell a woman like this that she shouldn’t have the right to own the weapon that possibly saved her life. When they advocate for the removal of your 2nd Amendment rights, this is the kind of story they ignore and see to that it never happens again.

The truth is that, despite everything that the gun grabbers promote, guns are a girl’s best friend. The harsh reality is that women aren’t typically as strong as men and are too often victims of men with ill intent. In a physical confrontation, more often than not, the woman will lose the fight and be subjected to whatever that man has in store her for her.

A gun does a lot to tip the scales for the woman. A man can’t physically overpower or intimidate a piece of metal traveling at high speeds.

If anyone should be advocating for the rights of gun owners, it’s women.

The post A Houston Woman Proves to Her Attackers and the Media that a Gun Is a Girl’s Best Friend appeared first on RedState.

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Walmart: We will no longer sell ammo for handguns or short-barreled rifles

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Pool’s open: When do we think Walmart will finally do the inevitable and discontinue gun and ammo sales altogether? They ended sales of AR-15s in 2015, remember. All that’s left now long rifles and shotguns — except in Alaska, where handguns were still available until today. That loophole is being closed now, per the chain’s new policy. Their ammo inventory had remained more expansive, with handgun ammunition plus short-barreled rifle calibers like the .223 and 5.56 that can be used in assault rifles still in stock and on sale nationwide. But that’s also ending today.

From now on they’re down to pure hunting weapons and accessories, the sort of thing that even many gun-control advocates *claim* they can tolerate people owning. But this can’t possibly last: There’ll be more mass shootings, and even if there’s no link to Walmart products in any of them, the mere fact that America’s largest retailer continues to “mainstream” guns by offering a limited few for sale will be deemed problematic. If you want to make firearms taboo among the public, you can’t very well have them on sale at the local mega-store, even if it’s only long rifles that no would-be mass killer would ever bother with. Walmart will need to go gun-free in the name of Progress.

And they will. But when? 2021, figure? Before, after?

They’re not just tweaking their own inventory. Walmart customers are now being asked not to open-carry unless security is present. And the CEO is calling on Washington to pass some new forms of gun control:

“We’ve also been listening to a lot of people inside and outside our company as we think about the role we can play in helping to make the country safer,” he added. “It’s clear to us that the status quo is unacceptable.”

McMillon said he will also be sending letters to the White House and other Congressional leaders, asking for action on “common sense measures.” He’s calling on the government to “strengthen background checks and to remove weapons from those who have been determined to pose an imminent danger.”

“Congress and the administration should act,” the CEO said.

Red-flag laws of the sort alluded to in that excerpt poll very well and expanded background checks poll phenomenally, almost universally, well. Righties will greet the new policy by warning that Walmart risks a boycott among gun enthusiasts by endorsing gun-control regulations but (a) that risk is overstated given how popular these proposals are across the population and (b) they’re already prepared to take a financial hit in the name of their new almost-gun-free policy. Right now Walmart accounts for around 20 percent of all U.S. ammo sales; by getting rid of handgun and short-barreled rifle ammunition, they project their share falling to between six and nine percent. How often does a mega-corporation volunteer to give up national market share in a product on the scale? Walmart’s not playing around. Especially after the bad press they received for the token gesture they made after the El Paso and Dayton shootings.

It could be that they’re sensing a shift nationally in America’s approach to guns and looking to get ahead of the curve, or (relatedly) it could be that they’re afraid of becoming a core target of progressives on this issue. Discontinuing sales of the AR-15 relieved some liberal pressure on Walmart over mass shootings but that status quo will hold only until it doesn’t. So long as they were still selling ammo for handguns and assault rifles, they stood a good chance of their products being used in the next mass murder given the sheer ubiquity of Walmarts nationwide. A Walmart-linked mass shooting might be all it might take to generate a national boycott by gun-grabbers that could cause the company real economic pain, especially during an election season in which left-wing candidates would be eager to leverage the issue. (Four different Dem hopefuls called on Walmart to stop selling guns altogether a few weeks ago.) They’re willing to take a hit on ammo sales to prevent a potentially bigger hit later.

I’m going to guess they’re gun-free by 2022. What have you got, over or under?

The post Walmart: We will no longer sell ammo for handguns or short-barreled rifles appeared first on Hot Air.

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Ted Cruz Shuts Down Bette Midler After She Accused Him of Doing Nothing to Solve Gun Violence

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Bette Midler presents the award for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a play at the 71st annual Tony Awards on Sunday, June 11, 2017, in New York. (Photo by Michael Zorn/Invision/AP)

Actress Bette Midler is like many Hollywood political types who allow their blind hatred for Republicans get in the way of their reason.

In Midler’s case, she likes to openly wish for physical harm to come to Republicans such as Rand Paul and believes black Republicans are non-entities according to a now-deleted tweet.

Midler hatred for Republicans also seems to prohibit her from seeing things they do that are beneficial in any way as well. Case in point, after Texas Sen. Ted Cruz tweeted his heartbreak over the shooting that occurred in Odessa, Texas, Midler fired from the hip and put her ignorance on full display.

“Heidi and I are heartbroken by this heinous attack, and we are lifting up in prayer all the victims, their families, and the entire Midland-Odessa community,” tweeted Cruz. “We are thankful for the law enforcement officers who heroically risked their lives and acted swiftly to stop the shooter and save others. Their courage helped prevent even more senseless deaths, and we honor their tireless commitment to protecting us all.”

Midler, the woman who likes it when violence is visited upon people she disagrees with, responded by telling Cruz that he was “spineless” and “without morality.”

What’s more, she claimed that Cruz hasn’t taken any action in the Senate to prevent these gun deaths.

Actually, he had. Cruz and Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa created S-649, a bill that would “address gun violence, improve the availability of records to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, address mental illness in the criminal justice system, and end straw purchases and trafficking of illegal firearms, and for other purposes.”

The bill was overwhelmingly rejected by Democrats who filibustered it.

Cruz didn’t respond with any snark and was even complimentary toward Midler as he corrected her error.

“Bette, you’re an amazing singer, but spewing hate & insults only contributes to the tragic division in our Nation. I’ve led the fight in the Senate to stop felons & those w/ serious mental illness from getting guns. In 2013, Dems filibustered that bill,” tweeted Cruz, who linked to the bill.

A classy move by Cruz that Midler seems to have zero response to. Instead, she continued raving about Trump afterward.

Midler seems to very rarely want to acknowledge any idea that could bring America back to a place of civility when it comes to politics, and I’m not holding my breath about her coming around either. Midler seems to get more pleasure out of being politically divisive and vile about it to boot.

To that, I say fine. There’s no doubt that in time, people will find themselves repulsed by her behavior, even more than they already are.

The post Ted Cruz Shuts Down Bette Midler After She Accused Him of Doing Nothing to Solve Gun Violence appeared first on RedState.

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Beto O’Rourke tells CNN: Our problem with gun violence is f***ed up

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The version of this morning’s interview uploaded by CNN to YouTube has the offending word bleeped, as you’ll see below. The version that aired live on CNN this morning did not. He’s getting good buzz from progressives because of it, just like he got good buzz a few weeks ago when he was asked by a reporter what Trump might say after the El Paso shooting to make things better and replied incredulously, “What the f***?”

Whether it’s a deliberate strategy or just O’Rourke letting it all hang out now that he’s become a long longshot in the primaries, he’s the “passion candidate” in the race now. If you’re a progressive who wants to hear a thoughtful four-minute analysis of potential gun-control legislation, you talk to Buttigieg. If you’re a progressive who wants someone to channel your exasperation at policies you hate with choice expletives, Beto’s your guy.

He might end up climbing his way back into the top tier one F at a time. “Profanity is not the f-bomb,” he said on Twitter this morning. “What is profane is a 17-month-old baby being shot in the face.” Odds are no worse than 50/50 that he calls Trump an MFer at the next debate.

Stick with the clip after the first few minutes here to see Dana Bash quiz him about the most dubious part of his gun-control agenda, a mandatory buyback of assault weapons a la Australia. How are you going to get that passed, she wonders, a question to which Beto has no answer. Not even a narrow Senate Democratic majority that’s nuked the filibuster would enact a mandatory buyback I think; they’d probably lose enough red-state Dems like Joe Manchin on the vote that they’d fall short of 50. It’s also possible that the Supreme Court would swat down a buyback as an infringement of the Second Amendment, although you know how John Roberts gets when the Court is asked to rule on a momentous Democratic initiative. He may lean right (he voted with Scalia in the Heller case) but he seems to worry a lot about the Court looking like a partisan creature, which explains his infamous vote in the ObamaCare case. Would anyone be surprised if Roberts joined with the liberals to uphold a buyback — i.e. confiscation — program?

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Walmart reacts to El Paso and Dayton shootings by ending … violent promotional displays

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A strange ploy since it’s obvious what they’re trying to do and also obvious that it won’t work.

There is a certain item to be found in Walmart stores which lefties are perennially agitating against, particularly after mass shootings. But it’s not “violent displays.”

If Walmart didn’t want to end gun sales, they’d have been better off doing nothing at all. A token gesture like this aimed at deflecting attention from its gun policies will end up pissing gun-grabbers off even more than silence would have, since it has the effect of highlighting the fact that the company won’t indulge them on their pet issue. Imagine believing devoutly that the only way to end mass murders is to stop guns and having Walmart tell you, “We won’t do that but we’ll keep the posters for the next Grand Theft Auto game out of the store, mkay?”

The retailer instructed employees in an internal memo to remove any marketing material, turn off or unplug video game consoles that show violent games — specifically Xbox and PlayStation consoles, and to monitor and turn off any violence depicted on screens in its electronics departments…

Under the heading: “Immediate Action,” employees were instructed to “Review your store for any signing or displays that contain violent images or aggressive behavior. Remove from the salesfloor or turn off these items immediately.”…

Patrick Markey, a psychology professor at Villanova University who focuses on video games, found in his research that men who commit severe acts of violence actually play violent video games less than the average male. About 20% were interested in violent video games, compared with 70% of the general population, he explained in his 2017 book “Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games Is Wrong.”

Here’s a typical headline (in this case from NBC) about the move. Does this read like good press or bad press for the company’s show of “sensitivity”?

Westlake Legal Group wm-1 Walmart reacts to El Paso and Dayton shootings by ending … violent promotional displays warren Walmart violent Video The Blog sales Guns gun game El Paso displays dayton

Not only do guns remain on sale, notes Scott Shackford, but so do … violent video games. It’s just promotional materials for the games that are verboten. The point here, it seems, isn’t to blame video games for causing mass murder by somehow warping people’s brains, it’s merely to spare customers from being reminded of the recent shootings by keeping images of violence out of the stores. Although even then, says Shackford, why make that a national policy instead of one exclusive to Walmart stores in El Paso and Dayton?

Their attempt to change the subject isn’t working on gun-control fans. To the contrary:

Walmart stopped selling semiautomatic rifles, including AR-15s, in 2015 and began focusing on sportsman firearms instead. It also previously raised the age limit for purchasing weapons in its stores to 21. A question for the readership, then: Does anyone know of an analysis positing how many mass shootings have been committed with weapons purchased at Walmart? I’ve been googling but can’t find anything definitive. There have been some — NBC notes that “the 2011 shooting in Arizona, in which 18 were shot, and the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, in which 49 people were killed” involved guns or ammo from Walmart. But my guess is that the number is very small, particularly since the time when the company phased out semiautomatics. This Time piece from last year succinctly explains why. Rifles aren’t used in many homicides, period, let alone sporting rifles being used in mass murders. Also, I would guess that a degenerate who’s preparing to indulge a super-soldier fantasy by gunning down a bunch of “enemies” wouldn’t want to shop for his weapon of “war” at a pedestrian supermarket where moms are busy buying groceries. He’d feed the fantasy by going to a gun store to show seriousness of purpose.

If it’s mass shootings you’re primarily worried about, then, Walmart circa 2019 is a weird place to target. If it’s guns generally that you’re eager to ban, then targeting a mega-corporation that sells them all over the country makes more sense. Hence Warren’s protest.

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