On a Thursday American Family Radio broadcast, host Buster Wilson warned listeners that President Barack Obama now has the power to take guns away, not from all Americans, but only from conservatives, adding that he’s been openly laying the groundwork for the move since 2009.
“What if the attorney general, and listen the reason I say this might happen is because if you remember the first report put out by the Director of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, when the president became President of the United States, she put out a paper talking about the people who are the categories of people who might be homegrown terrorists,” he said.
“In that list, she put people who believe in the second coming of Jesus Christ, people who believe in pro-life issues, people who don’t believe in having illegal aliens here, they put a lot of good, decent categories of people in that paper,” Wilson added.
That’s when he unfurled his real conspiracy theory, pinpointing the fourth executive order Obama proposed on Wednesday. “Well here’s what number four says, the attorney general can put who he wants to on the list of people who are too dangerous to get guns. What if he decides radio talk show hosts who don’t believe in gay marriage, they’re dangerous, so they shouldn’t get guns? What about pastors who preach against abortion and homosexuality? They’re too dangerous get guns. That could happen.”
Wilson’s spiel is wrong at its most basic premise: The DHS does not consider Christians or conservatives to be a threat and the president hasn’t even come close to proposing gun seizures.
Far from granting the power to add Christians or anti-LGBT activists to a list of dangerous people, the president’s fourth executive order on firearms directs the attorney general to ensure the categories on the prohibited purchase list encompass individuals known to be a threat to society. Similarly, several other proposed executive orders relate to hardening the nation’s background check system, in an effort to prevent dangerous people from acquiring firearms. This is nothing new, but it is an effort to firm up existing laws.
Additionally, the 2009 DHS report Wilson mentions (PDF) does not specify Christians or anti-immigrant activists as dangerous people, but it does warn that the recession, combined with the election of the nation’s first African-American president, could cause a resurgence in right-wing extremism. In particular, it accurately warned that militia groups and white supremacist gangs have adopted the political movement as a recruiting tool.
Despite the seemingly prophetic political forecast, the author of that report was fired from the agency after it caused a media firestorm. “There’ve been no hearings about the rising white supremacist threat, but there’s been a long list of attacks over the last few years,” former DHS Analyst Daryl Johnson told Wired last August. “But they still hold hearings about Muslim extremism. It’s out of balance.”
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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