A Conservative Is A Liberal That’s Been Mugged

About twenty years ago I was playing in a band. The drummer was the second-youngest of about eight kids from a very left-leaning family. All eight of the kids were very politically aware, and some of them – not the drummer – were quite active. And it was fun; I’d get into long political discussions over all of the issues of the day; the siblings were all pretty sharp, passionately motivated, and had strong opinions.

Including about gun control. They all favored it. I, being at the time a conservative talk show host (who hoped to be right between jobs, any ol’ day now), opposed ’em. Older brother sneered “a real man doesn’t need a gun to protect himself”; he got a good yuck, until I asked if his sexagenarian father would be “not a real man” if set upon by a gang of young toughs.


One evening, not a week after a long argument about guns, the drummer called me. “We gotta go gun shopping”. He’d been mugged while walking down Pleasant Avenue just off Lake Street.

We went to the gun shop. I talked him out of buying a chinese-made AK-47 knockoff, and into a revolver (a Charter .44 Special). We then went to the range and busted off a couple of boxes of ammo – I brought my whole arsenal (a .45 Colt Auto, an 8mm Hakim battle rifle, and a .22 rifle and .22 automatic pistol) along with to get him seriously oriented. He ended up turning into quite the gunny; the last we talked he had the Charter, a .44 Magnum, an SKS, a .303 Enfield Mark IV, a .45 Auto and a Walther P38 his father had brought back from the war.

Proving, as the old saying goes, that “a conservative is a liberal that’s been mugged (and a libertarian is a conservative that’s been audited”).

It happened in Cleveland (from the Cleveland Plain Dealer, via TvM), where State Rep. Michael DeBose, a previously anti-gun Democrat lawmaker, had nearly the identical epiphany while walking around his “transitional” neighborhood:

The loud muffler on a car that slowly passed as he was finishing the walk caught his attention, though. When the car stopped directly in front of his house – three houses from where he stood – he knew there was going to be a problem.

“There was a tall one and a short one,” DeBose said, sipping on a McDonald’s milkshake and recounting the experience Friday.

“The tall one reached in his pocket and pulled out a silver gun. And they both started running towards me.”

“At first I just backed up, but then I turned around and started running and screaming.”

“When I started running, the short boy stopped chasing and went back to the car. But the tall boy with the gun kept following me.

It was a “road to Damascus” moment for Debose:

DeBose twice voted against a measure to allow Ohioans to carry concealed weapons. It became law in 2004.

He who votes last votes loudest.

23 thoughts on “A Conservative Is A Liberal That’s Been Mugged

  1. Mitch,

    You admonished Hugh for his careless use of terms in regards to firearms and now you’re doing the same thing:

    “(a .45 Colt Auto, an 8mm Hakim battle rifle, and a .22 rifle and .22 automatic pistol)”

    This is how people like Hugh and the MSM get false information. You are referring to SEMI-auto handguns, not “auto” or “automatic” since as you have pointed out before, they have been illegal since the 30s.

    I see this all the time in the media but expect more from a gun owner.

  2. Another way to look at it: most Republicans are constantly wetting their pants in fear.

  3. My perception of the liberal point of view on gun law:

    Nobody needs a gun until I need a gun.

  4. most Republicans are constantly wetting their pants in fear.

    Actually, research has shown that gun owners (of both parties, I’d suspect) are both better-educated than non-gun-owners, happier people, AND less fearful of crime and less tolerant of police brutality in particular.

  5. JB,

    Ooops. I answered your comments in the other gun thread.

    You’re right, I have no fully-automatic weapons.

    But I HAVE fired a couple; an M3 Grease Gun at a range, and an Australian Owen. Way way way fun.

  6. “Research” Mitch? Or do you mean “a 14-year-old opinion piece by some gun nut?” Cause that’ what you linked to.

  7. Or do you mean…

    I mean the Don Kates/Patricia Harris survey that is referenced in the piece I linked. It doesn’t exist online. I may actually make it a project to put it online.

    None of the facts have been shown to have changed. Indeed, I’d suspect gun owners have gotten even happier, given that history is proving us right at every turn.

  8. Sure they’re happier. If somebody pisses ’em off they just kill them.

  9. The AC said:

    “Sure they’re happier. If somebody pisses ‘em off they just kill them.”

    If Texans have taught us anything it’s that some people just need killin’.

  10. Apparently they don’t included Osama bin Laden.

    Texans are pussies.

  11. Reminds me of a great line from We Were Soldiers Once.

    Mel Gibson is telling Sam Elliot about how he was somewhat concerned that he was walking into a trap in his mission to engage the NVA and how he wondered what Custer’s last thoughts were.

    Sam Elliot says (in a Texas drawl no less):

    Sir, Custer was a pussy.

  12. “A lame clown is such a sad thing.”

    I keep encouraging him to change the “angry” to “boxthe”.

  13. One of my professors here at the Air War College is an former Brit SAS office who held a U.S. class III license for years. He brought out some of his arsenal for two of us to try…including-MAC 10 (piece of junk); Uzi with red-dot sight–very nice; a Rhodesian 10 round semi-auto 12 gauge–way cool; a Finnish AK-47–excellent weapon; and his own offering as a follow-on assault rifle for the U.S. military which packed a 6mm punch to replace the 5.56 in current use (hence his lack of luck selling it); plus many more.

  14. Fingers,

    Damn. Sounds like fun! When are you and the SAS guy coming to the Cities?

    A local gun range used to have a night where you could rent submachine guns to bust off caps. An expensive kick – but a kick nonetheless. Not sure if they do that anymore, but I may just call and find out…

  15. Both Bill’s and Burnsville Pistol Range (my favorite range) occasionally have full-auto nights. I was sorry to miss the most recent one at BPR — lots of interesting stuff to look at and play with.

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