'Insensitive, creepy and ghoulish' Republicans are doing gunowners more harm than good: conservative

'Insensitive, creepy and ghoulish' Republicans are doing gunowners more harm than good: conservative

Daily Beast opinion columnist and Never Trump conservative Matt Lewis has his share of disagreements with liberals and progressives where gun control is concerned. Lewis considers himself staunchly pro-2nd Amendment, and he isn't shy about saying that he grew up around a "gun culture."

But in a scathing column published on April 17, Lewis takes issue with the "insensitive, creepy, and ghoulish" way in which many "Republican politicians" address the gun control issue. And he believes that the theatrics of Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and other MAGA Republicans are doing the 2nd Amendment more harm than good.

"When I was around ten," Lewis recalls, "my grandfather gave me a real shotgun. My dad intervened to make sure that I did not have unfettered access to it, and that I could only shoot it with his direct supervision. My dad was a prison guard and an avid hunter. He took gun ownership seriously. All this to say, I'm not a gun-grabbing city slicker — though I do think there are common sense reforms we should consider, including red flag laws and background checks."

READ MORE: Guns don't kill Americans, Republicans do

Lewis continues, "I’m not offended by law-abiding Americans who have guns for hunting and protection. What I am offended by are weirdos who want to go out of their way to constantly remind you that they are armed to the teeth."

The conservative columnist has no problem with conservatives debating liberals and progressives vigorously on gun control; what he objects to are the "bizarre" and "weird" theatrics — especially when they follow a mass shooting.

"In the wake of all the violence we have seen in recent decades," Lewis laments, "I would expect 2nd Amendment advocates to go out of their way to demonstrate responsible gun ownership. Remember the Party of Personal Responsibility? Instead, it seems like Republican politicians are going out of their way to fetishize guns. They are more than just for protection or sport. They are a way of life, a religion, a culture."

Even Republicans with strong pro-2nd Amendment voting records, Lewis argues, risk being attacked as "squishy RINOs" by MAGA Republicans if they aren't "performative" enough.

READ MORE: How the gun-loving South dominates these United States

"Clearly, what we are seeing is some sort of vice signaling, presumably because the demand to be perceived as a performatively tough Second Amendment advocate is so intense that mere words and past votes are no longer persuasive enough," Lewis observes. "In addition to supporting the right to bear arms, you now also have to demonstrate that you are a gun fanatic."

READ MORE: Students across the country walk out of school to protest gun violence

Read Matt Lewis' full Daily Beast column at this link (subscription required).

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