March 27, 2016

The site of the RNC convention, the Quicken Loans Arena, in Cleveland, does not allow firearms or any other weapons on its premises, regardless of Ohio being an open carry state. This is not the first time guns were banned at a Republican National Convention.

Guns were banned at the 2012 Republican convention in Florida. The Tampa Tribune reported then that the Secret Service and (City of) Tampa trumped state laws that “block the city from acting to limit guns.”

Lest anyone forget, the GOP holds the Second Amendment as near and dear to their hearts as their Bibles, and would never want to deny Americans the right to bear arms in this country. The NRA has practically written policy in all branches of the US Government, as evidenced by McConnell's recent proclamation that the NRA would have to approve any SCOTUS nominee.

The group, Americans For Responsible Open Carry, is using the redefinition of the 2nd Amendment by the GOP's master, the NRA-ILA to try to strong arm the convention organizers to allow for open carry, to 'protect' everyone. You know, the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun...

At this point, we aren't certain about the the real motive for the petition, although it isn't surprising to those of us who watch the GOP kowtow to the gun manufacturers and its death merchants.

It’s not clear whether the call to arms was created to sincerely celebrate the sanctity of the Second Amendment or if it’s meant to put the GOP, which strongly backs gun rights, in an awkward position.

(The open carry group) wants presidential contender Ohio Gov. John Kasich to use his executive power to override the so-called gun-free zone loophole in Ohio’s law. RNC Chairman Reince Preibus also must explain how “a venue so unfriendly to Second Amendment rights was chosen for the Republican Convention and have a backup plan to move the site if the group’s demands aren’t met.

The petition claims that because Cleveland is one of the most dangerous cities in the world, forcing attendees to leave their weapons at home is putting everyone at risk.

“Without the right to protect themselves, those at the Quicken Loans Arena will be sitting ducks, utterly helpless against evil-doers, criminals or others who wish to threaten the American way of life.”

Last week, Donald Trump predicted that things could get ugly at the RNC if he isn't given the nomination handily. He said, when faced with the possibility that there could be a brokered convention,

"I think you'd have riots. I think you'd have riots," Trump said Wednesday on CNN's "New Day." "I'm representing a tremendous many, many millions of people."

The GOP's chickens are coming home to roost: thanks to years of appeasing and coddling the far right base, they've created their very own Trump monster, whom they can't control. To make matters worse, the sanctimonious Republican party deserves this gun-headache with decades of dedicated service to the NRA. As Key & Peele would say, Consequences!

This all sounds like a 'terrific' party (as Trump might say): a combination of free-dumb, open carry, angry mobs, riots and a crazy demagogue sanctioning violent behavior. Good luck with that!

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