Hey everyone, gun control ain’t dead! There’s actually a bill in Congress that would ban ammunition purchases for six months! And, unbelievably, this bill has the support of far-right GOPers like Sen. Jim Inhofe Of Oklahoma.
What’s that, you say?
Yep, meet the AMMO Act (“Ammunition Management for More Obtainability,” cute, huh? Republicans love those clever acronyms). Will it stop suspected terrorists from buying ammunition? Crazy people? Convicted felons, domestic abusers, etc.? Nope. It’s directed at federal agencies:
The legislation would require the Government Accountability Office to conduct a report on the purchasing of ammunition by federal agencies, except the Department of Defense, and its effect on the supply of ammunition available to the public. The AMMO Act would restrict agencies from obtaining additional ammunition for a six-month period if current agency stockpiles are higher than its monthly averages prior to the Obama Administration.
This bill stems from some long-debunked conspiracy theories circulating around the internet about the Obama Administration stockpiling ammo to disarm the American populace and prepare for civil unrest (oddly, the bill exempts the Defense Department; seems some folks don’t really understand the meaning of the term “martial law”).
Anti-government “tin-foil haters” like Alex Jones and Pat Dollard are cheering the bill. Of course they are, they’re the very folks who have been flogging this nonsense in the first place. The fact that there is actual legislation in the U.S. House and Senate addressing one of their crackpot conspiracy theories is a huge win for them. It shows how far their influence has reached inside the Republican Party.
And make no mistake, this is unique to the Republican Party. Yes, during the Bush years some lefties pondered the government’s role in 9/11; some folks believed a false national security event would occur so the Bush Administration could declare martial law and cancel the 2004 elections. But these were commenters on blogs, maybe a far-left radio host or two. Not people actually elected to the United States Senate or a state legislature. Not people holding office and in a position to influence public policy.
Not people like Tennessee Republican Rick Womick, or the crazy lady in New Hampshire’s state house who bought Alex Jones’ “false flag” nonsense about the Boston bombings. The fact that the Republican Party is increasingly associated with these fringe conspiracy nutters shows just how far off the rails America’s conservative political party has gone. Wake up, folks. Michele Bachmann has plenty of company in that crazy train.
I call them “tin-foil haters” because hate is exactly what these people are selling. It’s distrust of the government with a heaping pile of amygdala-tweaking fear thrown in, topped with a shining hero archetype. It’s the idea that only you, young Wolverine, have the exclusive truth and can save the world — or at least your corner of it. Only you can be the hero of this movie. And yes, I do blame Hollywood for a lot of this stuff. I can’t tell you how tired I am of seeing the White House or a national landmark blown up on the big screen (and hunky Channing Tatum alone can save us!). Hollywood, get a new storyline. This one’s played out.
By the way: if you think our government is too incompetent to regulate healthcare but is clever enough to pull off any of the convoluted conspiracy theories you’ve dreamed up, I’ve got a bridge to sell you.