Tell me about "town hall" meetings

Obviously prompted by the recent CNN town hall on gun control…

I see that the NRA was invited to participate… what were the requirements had they agreed to?

To what extent did CNN or the President’s people control the audience/questioning makeup?

Has a TV network ever refused to cover a politician’s town hall because they didn’t think it was balanced ?

I didn’t realize that I put this in GD…could I get it moved to GQ or Elections?

The NRA (unsurprisingly) had plenty of criticism of the president’s statements but doesn’t seem to have had any of the makeup or rules of the “town hall” itself.

The problem is that in the wake of the incredibly diluted executive actions that Obama took, there was really very little to criticize unless you were preaching to the choir. So why go there just to agree with a gun grabber.

And there we have that phrase that indicates honest discussion is over, and only four posts in-I think it’s a new record.

Which guns has Obama grabbed?

I think that’s unfair. The substance of his post is that there’s really nothing to complain about.

Which is something he could have said without the slur…which seems to roll off the tongues of gun rights enthusiasts with less and less effort every day. Do they even recognize it as a slur, or do they think that it is proper to call people in a conversation that right off the bat and expect said conversation to stay civil?

“Slur” is a bit much. It’s a petty insult. Let it go. It’s not as though our side doesn’t call them dick enlargers and so on.

I expected better from him, though. I could see him being quiet if others started slinging the word around, but apparently he’s decided to be one of the gang.


I don’t know if that counts as “grabbing” guns, but at a minimum there will be an additional 75,000 people each year that are prohibited from buying new ones because of his executive actions.

This LA Times article makes it sound like Obama is going to declare 4.2 million citizens prohibited persons with the stroke of a pen.

My (possibly incorrect) understanding was that the '68 GCA lists someone “who has been adjudicated as a mental defective” as a prohibited person. I didn’t think that one had to have been adjudicated as a mental defective in order to sign up for Social Security representative payee system, but I could be wrong.

…but you brought it up anyway. Again, what guns has President Obama grabbed?

4.2 million new prohibited persons via a novel executive branch interpretation of “mentally defective” is “gun grabbing” in my opinion. That doesn’t mean Obama’s going to go to their house personally to take away their old shotgun, but it’s his executive action that’ll get the ball rolling.

So…anything that stops the gun and ammo manufacturers from profiteering is now labeled as “gun grabbing”? You don’t have to take someone’s gun to be a “gun grabber”-you just have to think that some people should not be given free rein to buy guns?

Too late to add: And why bother saying "I don’t know if this counts as “grabbing guns”, when in your very next post you do indeed confirm that you think it does count as “grabbing guns”?

Why don’t you offer a definition of the term “gun grabber” so we can evaluate the criteria?

I stay away from pejorative terms because it causes distractions from substantive issues. But if you are going to claim the term “gun grabber” is out of bounds of honest discussion because it is a slur, I would think you’d be more circumspect in your use of pejorative descriptors like “profiteering”.

I apologize-change “profiteering” to “make a profit”. As far as defining “gun grabber” is concerned, outside of someone actually grabbing a gun, it’s a slur that has no place in this conversation…unless you’re the type of person that thinks in terms of “White Hats vs. Black Hats”.

How about this: Someone who says you’ll get their gun only after prying it from their cold, dead fingers is a “gun grabber”. Because, after all, they’ve clearly stated that they grab their guns.

Chris Cox stated:

I can’t find independent corroboration of that claim but I also can find no denials.

Given that the Executive Actions were basically nothing (except for the SSA item, which is more nuanced), there is really no benefit to attending the Town Hall. Either you participate with a meaningful question and piss off the NRA supporters who are opposed to anything Obama does, you participate with a more antagonistic question and piss off people who may be on the fence but play well to the base, or you decline outright. The NRA doesn’t need Obama to make news so they can choose to push their message in the venue of their choice. There is no reason to join the townhall and be one voice among many where Obama has the bully pulpit to lecture them when they can hold their own press conference, release their own statements, and control the message and dialogue.

When I said, "I don’t know if this counts … " I meant that I didn’t know if you’d “count it”. My follow-up statement was just stating that, in my opinion, it does count. I see “gun grabber” as short-hand for “someone who wants to further infringe on the right of the people to keep and bear arms”. Obama falls under that definition.

This thread is the first time I’ve seen it called a “slur”, but it seems to be standard operating procedure around here to paint those who don’t tow the party line as “bigots”, so it’s not terribly surprising.