Gunning for Obama: A Modest Proposal

pistolAt a recent public discussion about health insurance with US President Barack Obama, a New Hampshire man with a gun strapped to his leg waved a sign saying, “It Is Time to Water the Tree of Liberty,” a reference to a quote by Thomas Jefferson that finishes, “with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” When asked by a reporter if the gun was loaded, the man, William Kostric, laughed, saying, “Wow. Who would be silly enough to carry an unloaded firearm?” Not only was Kostric not detained by police, police even assisted him, telling him where he could stand.

A few days later, a dozen people showed up at a Phoenix, Arizona speech of Obama’s with guns, at least two with semi-automatic rifles. The police made sure that the men with guns were protected from the people without guns! One reporter said he had never seen civilians with automatic weapons at any event of George W. Bush’s when the latter was president, but, the reporter added, in the infuriating style characteristic of the American media, which pretends both Left and Right act the same, that doesn’t mean they weren’t there.

Very soon, it will be commonplace for dozens of people with automatic weapons to be at Obama’s speeches.

Obama in fact recently removed restrictions on carrying guns, so these men are not protesting against Obama because he is curbing their “rights.” They are sending a not-so-veiled threat to Obama, So you want to be like JFK? They want him to stop going down the path to what they call “socialism”―you know, the kind that failed in Western Europe. Or was it Eastern Europe. Whatever.

The constant comparisons of Obama to that arch-socialist, Hitler, also have this aim. They saw the Tom Cruise movie. Any action against a Hitler is justified.

The secret service will be unable to watch all the potential taxi drivers, which is the plan, thus making it that much easier for the next person wanting to get his name into the history books. And, afterwards, the media, crying crocodile tears, will ask, “How did we let the hate reach this point?”

“You call my kin Nazis I won’t let that pass,” Christopher Barwick once wrote me. “Get a Bodyguard or carry a gun you will need it.” Which gave me an idea:

If conservatives won’t cool it, liberals should start packing heat. When police arrest crippled black Harvard professors but assist men who threaten the life of the president, white liberals must start coming to Obama’s speeches armed, and stand right behind the gun-nuts.

Indeed, a modest proposal is that liberals should stand outside Kostric’s home and follow him wherever he goes. With guns loaded of course. (Carrying unloaded guns would be just silly!) If Kostric should ever confront Obama, and make a move that is “misinterpreted” by someone on our side… Oops. Hope he has health insurance!

Besides, show me when, in the entire history of America, any right-wing organization has ever been bothered by an “accidental” shooting―when the shooter was a white policeman and the “shootee” an innocent, unarmed black child.

The right-wingers comparing America today to Germany in the 1930’s are kooks, but their comparisons are apt in one respect: Weimar fell because there was an insufficiently muscular response to the stormtroopers.


Squeamish liberals, and hypocritical conservatives, will scream that I am advocating violence. To which I say: The Black Panthers carried guns legally, and you murdered them. That’s violence. I’m calling for piece-keeping.

If you don’t want America moving back, and to the right, then lock’n’load, Liberals. Let’s not say, “Never again,” ever again.

Jonathan David Farley

Jonathan David Farley is a Teaching and Research Fellow at the Institut für Algebra of Johannes Kepler Universität Linz in Linz, Österreich.

Published by the LA Progressive on August 23, 2009
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About Jonathan David Farley

In 2005, Seed Magazine named Dr. Jonathan David Farley one of “15 people who have shaped the global conversation about science”. He is the 2004 recipient of the Harvard Foundation’s Distinguished Scientist of the Year Award, a medal presented on behalf of the president of Harvard University in recognition of “outstanding achievements and contributions in the field of mathematics.” He obtained his doctorate in mathematics from Oxford University in 1995, after winning Oxford’s highest mathematics awards in 1994. Jonathan Farley graduated summa cum laude from Harvard University in 1991 with the second-highest grade point average in his graduating class.

Dr. Farley’s mathematical work has been profiled in The Chronicle of Higher Education, in Science News Online, in The Economist Magazine, in USA Today, on Fox News Television, and on Air America Radio. In 2001, Ebony Magazine named Dr. Farley a “Leader of the Future.” He has also been profiled in Jet Magazine, in Upscale Magazine, and on the cover of the NAACP’s Crisis Magazine.

Dr. Farley has been an invited guest on BBC World News Television, BBC Radio, and U.S. National Public Radio. On November 18, 2001, Dr. Farley was an invited speaker at the “Stop the War” demonstration in London, which drew 100,000 people. His essay, “My Fellow Americans: Looking Black on Red Tuesday,” appeared in Beyond September 11: An Anthology of Dissent, which also featured essays by Naomi Klein and Noam Chomsky. Dr. Farley has written for Time Magazine, The New York Times, The Guardian newspaper, Essence Magazine, and the hip hop magazine The Source.

The City of Cambridge, Massachusetts (home to both Harvard University and MIT) officially declared March 19, 2004 to be “Dr. Jonathan David Farley Day”.