Hayes scores A-plus on the culture of guns!


Burgeoning anger and menace: Just how bad is our floundering nation's social disintegration? We'll recommend an A-plus segment by Chris Hayes on last evening's All In.

The segment dealt with the culture of guns on the right. More specifically, it dealt with the growing use of guns to menace along political lines.

To watch the segment, just click here; we strongly recommend it. You'll start with some video of Donald Trump, Jr. as he brandishes some guns. From there, you'll move to video of the gun-brandishing Lauren Boebert. 

Along the way, you'll see Hayes discuss the use of guns as symbolic iconography in various revolutionary movements around the world. For us, the questions the segment triggered were these:

What are these people so angry about? Also, should somebody try to find out?

Needless to say, we have a standard answer to that first question here in the streets of Our Town. We expect to discuss a recent example of that familiar recitation in our Friday report. 

Last night, Hayes' segment suggested a fury behind the apparent gun-love of figures like Boebert. We thought the segment was deeply discouraging, but also highly instructive. 

We can't link you to a transcript. The Channel no longer provides them.


  1. "What are these people so angry about?"

    May we suggest a working hypothesis, dear Bob: about the adorables and their hate-mongering race-war-inciting zombie cult?

    1. Me so stupid
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  2. "What are these people so angry about? Also, should somebody try to find out?"

    Somerby keeps ignoring the obvious answer to that question. The gun people are angry about minorities and women who don't know "their place" and seem to be usurping the privilege of white men.

    Guns give men a feeling of power that is not available to them in their daily lives. There is also a secondary nerdy fascination that men seem to have with the technical details of guns. They endlessly discuss the specs, just as train enthusiasts, coin collectors, Trekkies, day traders and others like to do with their enthusiasms. You can go into a gun store and never hear a word that sounds like spoken English.

    But the main appeal is the right to swagger that guns seem to give otherwise puny guys.

    What are these people so angry about? They have a sense of entitlement and their expectations are not being met. They think they ought to be. They blame the scapegoats identified for them by the Republican party and that gives them a target for their anger. Then that anger is stoked by Limbaugh and Fox News and the Republican noise machine. One of the targets offered to them is liberal Democrats. When that targeting is combined with accumulated stress in someone unstable, you get domestic terrorism, gun suicide and associated shooting of exes or workplaces, or hate crimes.

    When Trump wound those people up and pointed them at the Capitol building he gave them permission to take their anger out on political targets, including our elected reps. They felt like mighty patriots doing their duty for Trump against the libs who had stolen their election, much as they have been told their country is being stolen from them.

    Liberals and Democrats have had no part in any of this. Somerby's continual criticism of liberals is part of the conservative targeting of the left, we are not being "hated" for any good reason, by Somerby or anyone else.

    What Somerby writes here every day is unhelpful. His pretense about criticizing the left from the left (to add credibility to his rants) is not only dishonest, but it could get someone hurt. He should listen to Chris Hayes about this danger and stop playing this game.

    1. This is a really shallow reading of white identitarian politics. There's nothing about how this is fed by elite propaganda, how that propaganda serves to explain our current inequality, what the American caste structure respects and doesn't... It would be like saying someone robbed a bank because they were superstitious.

    2. Chris Hayes doesn't address anything beyond showing us that a bunch of right wingers are posing with guns. Not sure why this deserves an A+ rating.

    3. Had Somerby been writing in Germany in the 1930s, he would have constantly been wondering what these misunderstood Nazis are so angry about and blaming the liberals for not listening.

    4. Also, there have gazillions of books, articles, interviews and stories about the MAGA bunch and what they are so angry about. It's not like they haven't had a platform to tell everybody what they are so angry about.

    5. The problem is not enough cancel culture.

  3. The answer is they're afraid of being mistreated like they know the country mistreats other people. That's why they refuse masks. Because a proud white man can't be told what to do, can't be treated like a slave can.

    They're also preyed upon by religious bias that says only Christians are pure and holy and it isn't billionaires but the devil worshippers all around you trying to ruin your life. That those people on the bottom suffer because they lack Protestant virtues. That those people on the top got their by being blessed.

    1. No one who works with or for another person has the luxury of never being told what to do. The same applies to most close friendships and marriages. Cooperation is part of relating to people in groups.

      Democrats understand this better than Republicans. That's why the idea of bipartisanship and unity is laughable given the attitudes of Republicans in congress. Ultimately, this stance is untenable in other situations in life. Military and pseudo-military (e.g., police) organizational structures depend on people doing what they are told. How is that tolerated but not cooperating for the common good?

      There is a psychological phenomenon called the Fundamental Attribution Error in which someone blames external circumstances for their own problems but blames character for other people's problems. So I might explain my own job loss as a layoff due to recession whereas another person's is due to laziness or incompetence. Somerby approaches this by saying that we are wired to think badly, but actually, I think that the greater likelihood that a Democrat has taken a psychology class means that we are less likely to hold the views described by @3:04 and more likely to have empathy for others who are struggling.

      When Somerby keeps preaching at us to listen to The Other, we are the choir and not the ones who need to be told to listen. He needs to aim his messages at the ones who need them, The Other, especially the ones with guns.

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  5. I took the time to check out Hayes, and wondered, did he lift the image of Washington, crushing the Whisky Rebellion, from this gem?


    One does, in fact, have to wonder why armed mobs are allowed to proliferate. The level of misinformation that drives them is profound. But so, perhaps too, is a sense of wrongness in our political system.

    I sure as hell sense it.


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