By: José Niño
The topic of race has become one of the most polarizing facets of the 2020 election cycle and has been used by demagogic politicians on the Left to divide the country. In reality, the racial nature of current political debates has been a clever pivot devised by the Left to draw attention away from the level of dysfunction taking place in jurisdictions they control.
The riots that have ensued since the death of George Floyd have given millions of Americans a lurid wake-up call about how irresponsible the American political class has become. What’s more, they have demonstrated that many Americans — of all races and creeds — are taking matters into their own hands and arming themselves. In a time when police are being demonized in an unprecedented manner, while also being gutted in certain localities, Americans are realizing that they themselves are the best first responders.
One seasoned Second Amendment activist and gun store owner sees through the media ruse and is sticking to his proverbial guns. Michael Cargill is the owner of Central Texas Gun Works. He previously ran as a Democrat for the position of Travis County Constable in 2012. Now, he’s a member of the Texas Republican Party and the President of the Austin chapter of the Log Cabin Republicans.
Gunpowder Magazine caught up with Cargill and got his thoughts about the Second Amendment and how all Americans should embrace it, especially during this time of great uncertainty.
The Central Texas Gun Works owner stressed how the Second Amendment is the great equalizer. Cargill noted that, “If everyone owns gun, it levels the playing field, and everyone starts respecting each other.”
Cargill applied this logic to minorities as well, who are starting to take interest in self-defense matters at unprecedented rates. “More people of color are realizing that in order to level that playing field, they need to arm and educate themselves,” Cargill observed.
Wearetv.com reported this week:
Phillip Smith, president of the National African American Gun Association or ‘NAAGA’, says in 2020 more Black women are buying guns.
“We are literally setting pace for society for the new type of modern Black woman who’s independent, strong and yes, she can protect herself,” says Smith. “You go to gun ranges and you see a lot of Black women and they come in groups of four, five, six, together – learning how to shoot. This is something happening all across the country.”
Cargill specifically called attention to how more minorities are becoming aware of the firearms laws that are present in the states they live in and are taking it upon themselves to get educated on firearms policies and becoming proficient with firearms.
Cargill said he has not had to do significant minority outreach to encourage people to buy firearms or take firearms classes at his store. He said they “actually come to me.” In fact, Cargill has observed more minorities come into his gun store to buy firearms and take classes because they “…don’t want to put their lives in the hands of law enforcement.”
That said, Cargill does not take a race reductionist view on the issue of gun control. He noted how gun control has more of an impact on the working class because of how people of lower economic stature don’t have access to good legal representation. In turn, they have to rely on public defenders, who are notorious for their low caliber legal representation, to defend themselves in court. As a result, many working class people could be slapped with criminal convictions and barred from owning and/or carrying a firearm for a prolonged period of time. Similarly, Cargill pointed out that individuals who have trouble paying child support could also have their Second Amendment rights stripped. The regulatory hurdles that naturally accompany gun control generally price out working-class gun owners, further illustrating more of a class, rather than race dynamic at play when it comes to the negative effects of gun control.
On political strategy, Cargill is no fan of blind partisanship. Cargill declared that, “By siding with one particular party, whether it’s the Democrat Party or the Republican Party, the only thing you’re doing is arguing with each other on who has the best master.” For the purpose of bringing about real political change, Cargill called on voters to do their research and vote for candidates who actually uphold their principles.
“Instead of arguing about who has the best master, what we need to do is to look at each individual candidate and decide which candidate is going to be the best one for the job and hold them to the task,” Cargill remarked.
Cargill also urges grassroots activists to make sure candidates “do what you sent them to office to do.”
Furthermore, the gun store owner emphasized the importance of holding politicians at all levels of government —city hall, state legislature, and Congress — accountable. For Cargill, a culture of political accountability goes a long way in safeguarding our liberties. As far as the electoral importance of races is concerned, Cargill also added that the most crucial elections are local races involving district attorneys and sheriffs.
Cargill stressed the importance of sheriffs races because of how influential they are at the county level. “They can tell the federal government what they can and can’t do in their county,” Cargill said, adding, “[Sheriffs] can kick the feds out of the county.”
On top of that, Cargill recommended that Second Amendment activists get acquainted with their district attorney because, “That’s the person who’s going to prosecute you.” Cargill made it clear that ignoring these kinds of local races could prove to be harmful for Second Amendment advocates.
All in all, Michael Cargill is part of a new generation of gun owners who offers a unique perspective to Second Amendment advocacy. As the Second Amendment continues to grow, people like Cargill will play a major role in educating new gun owners and making them more politically effective, should they decide to enter the ring of Second Amendment politics.
For those who want to follow Cargill on social media, head to the links below:
And if you would like to support his business, check out Central Texas Gun Works’ website.
José Niño is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. Sign up for his mailing list here. Contact him via Facebook or Twitter. Get his guide, The 10 Myths of Gun Control, here.