It starts off with the very first sentence:
It looked like a casting call for a Sam Pekinpah shoot-’em-up: 100 or so gun enthusiasts showed up at the Buckhorn Grill in Walnut Creek, Calif., this month with revolvers strapped on their hips.Why is it that anti-gun people invoke the cowboy image when describing open carriers, or gun owners in general, if it is not to imply childishness and immaturity, and thus to dismiss the entire position of the gun-rights advocate? The cowboy image is further embellished by the use of the word "revolvers", when photographs of the event clearly show most people carried semi-automatic pistols. Invoking Sam Peckinpah's name implies that there is also a potential for the violence he portrayed in his films to become real violence at these events.
The editorial explains that this activity is, unfortunately, legal, and mourns that fact:
Unfortunately, more than two dozen states also have allowed themselves to be bullied by the gun lobby into adopting similarly dangerous law."gun lobby", a code phrase for the National Rifle Association, is blamed for all the terribly lax gun laws in states outside of New York, as if no real person would ever vote in favor of such an insane practice. The truth is less appealing to the Times, because open carry laws are often decades old, and have usually been approved by the majority of voters or state legislators without the influence of the N.R.A. A great many people in this nation believe in armed self-defense.
But all is not lost, the Times opines, because two restaurant chains have banned the open carriers:
The good news from California is that more businesses are summoning the courage to say no thanks and no entry to the flaunters.Right. These people are not carrying firearms, they are not responsible adults. They are "flaunters". Further, one restaurant chain, Starbucks, refuses to take the common sense approach and banish open carriers as well:
Should customers be free to sip Skinny Cinnamon Dolce Lattes at their laptop screens while brandishing a gleaming Ruger .357? So far, Starbucks executives say yes, claiming they are quite safety-minded within a policy that “supports the federal, state and local laws in the communities in which we do business.”So, open carriers not only "flaunt" their firearms, they also "brandish" their firearms, Never mind the fact that unholstering and actually brandishing a firearm is a crime in California, one that not one open carrier at any of the several events held recently has been accused of, once again a open carriers are portrayed as irresponsible cowboys.
But the editorial does not mention one important FACT about open carry events in California, omission of which accentuates the menace that the idea of 100 armed people in a family restaurant must inspire in New Yorker's minds: not one firearm carried at these events was loaded, because loaded firearms are illegal to carry in public places without a concealed carry permit. Further, the organizers of the event coordinated with the Walnut Creek police department to have an officer present to verify that all firearm were indeed unloaded as required by law.
Either the New York Times was ignorant of these facts, which I can scarcely credit given the publicity these events have received, or it is selectively omitting inconvenient facts in order to heighten the alarm of "right minded" citizens.
I'll leave it for you to decide which.