Commentary

Gays Against Guns vs Pink Pistols: Two views on gun control debate

Like Gays against Guns, Pink Pistols understands the clear links between homophobia and violence against our community. However, unlike the other group, Pink Pistols’ solution is not to increased gun regulations, but, rather, it advocates for increased gun ownership, including handguns and pistols of any color, as well as high-velocity and high-magazine capacity rifles.  

President of the Utah chapter of this LGBTQ pro-gun group, Matt Schlentz, is pictured in many articles about the group posing in front of his Rainbow Gadsen Flag (with the saying “Don’t Tread on Me”) and his AR-15, similar to the weapon used at Pulse, in his backyard in Salt Lake City. Minus the rainbow, the Gadsen Flag is the same one deployed to represent the right-wing political group, The Tea Party.

Though upsetting enough as it stands, the article’s title altered the empowering motto of Queer Nation from “We’re Here, We’re Queer, We’re Fabulous, Get Used to It,” to the perverted and corrupted paraphrase: “We’re Here, We’re Queer, And We’re Packing Heat.”

Gays against Guns is attempting to reduce the number of weapons and the skyrocketing gun violence directed against LGBTQ and all individuals and communities. Rather than diligently working for common sense firearms safety measures, Pink Pistols colludes in the endless cycle of increasing firearms in this country.

When one fights fire with fire, one gets higher and hotter flames, and we all get seriously burned. This brings to mind the profound words of Audre Lorde: “The master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house.” 

While Gays against Guns has picked up new and refreshed tools, Pink Pistols continues to employ the oppressors’ tools crafted by the firearms industry and promoted and propagandized by the National Rifle Association.

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