A convention where everybody shows up armed? That's not really anything new. It happens all across the country at various National Rifle Association gatherings. It happens at fast food restaurants in Texas. My guess is that it happens at regular meetings of your local branch of ISIS. And now, at least from the looks of the twenty thousand or more signatures on a petition, Republicans would like the chance to bring their guns along with them when they meet in Cleveland this summer to decide who their nominee for president will be.
That should make things interesting.
Given how fractious things have been with the Grand Old Party these past several months, adding the potential of a gunfight makes things just a whole lot more perplexing. Ohio is one of thirty-one states in the union that don't require a permit or a license to carry weapons in public. This may be one of the few things about Republicans that they prefer to do out in the open. With that in mind, what precisely will be gained by having a group of already frazzled conservatives running around waving their pistols in the air? A show of force, perhaps? I'll bet those Muslim troublemakers would stay the heck away. And those Black Lives Matter hooligans. And the leftist media types. And anybody who might take issue with the dominant paradigm, whatever that may be. It could be that the one thing that Republicans all agree on when they get together in Ohio will be that everyone should be armed. Heavily armed.
What happens at a convention hall when a whole lot of people don't agree? My mind goes back to Chicago in 1968, when the whole world was watching. Those were peace protesters. Angry mobs who were beaten down by cops sent to keep them out of the convention. It could be an inspired notion, therefore, to encourage a firefight on the convention in Cleveland. Especially since the now presumptive nominee of the Elephant Guys is the same guy who said there would be riots if he doesn't walk off the stage with the prize. How could anything possibly go wrong here?
It boggles my mind. Which is understandable given the circumstances. Most of what has happened in the Republican arena over the past year has been the boggling kind. If the Republican National Convention becomes the last great stand in the gun control debate, maybe this will all be worth it.
Then again, maybe it's just business as usual. And that may be the hardest pill of all to swallow.