Sharpening our wits on the grindstone of Life: The rattlesnakes are beginning to commit suicide .comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Sharpening our wits on the grindstone of Life

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The rattlesnakes are beginning to commit suicide

NRA targets Conoco over gun law
NRA launches corporate boycott

I don't know how this one slipped past my radar, but I heard the basis of the story on public radio this morning. Apparently the National Rifle Association has issued a boycott on companies that deny their employees the right to carry weapons in their vehicles on company property. And the brunt of their ire is focused on ConocoPhillips, who fired employees for violating their no-guns employment policies.

In the 1988 film Mississippi Burning, Gene Hackman delivered the poignant line "rattlesnakes don't commit suicide", which later proved itself false when the forces of hatred self-destructed when faced with modern reality. A similar metaphor applies here, when two forces who have often colluded in the past meet in opposite corners to again pit the past against modern realities.

The conundrum is that ConocoPhillips' greed driven quest for profits includes the desire to keep its people alive to achieve those goals, and the NRA's desire to allow everyone to carry weapons anywhere they damn well want to is contrary to those goals.

The result: an NRA boycott.

"Across the country, we're going to make ConocoPhillips the example of what happens when a corporation takes away your Second Amendment rights," NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said Monday.

The old adage goes, "your right to punch me ends where my nose begins". Greedy as ConocoPhillips may be, they've made it clear that bringing weapons onto company property puts their employees at risk, and it won't be allowed.

"Our primary concern is the safety of all our employees," the company said. "We are simply trying to provide a safe and secure working environment ... by keeping guns out of our facilities, including our company parking lots."

Peter Hamm, spokesman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence in Washington, said companies that were fighting to keep guns out of their employee parking lots were not trying to overturn the Second Amendment or taking part in a "sneaky conspiracy to take away everyone's guns."

"Americans should be alarmed that the National Rifle Association's agenda is to get as many (guns) as possible into as many places as possible - including the kinds of places that we've all got to agree are better off without a lot of firearms," Hamm said.

When you choose to become one of their employees, you sign a statement saying that you will abide by this policy, and that the company reserves the right to terminate your employment should you violate this policy. If you're fired for violating this policy, you have voluntarily chosen to ignore this policy, which you knew would result in your termination.

Anyone who's read more than one of my posts will agree that I'm not a fan of Big Oil, but I don't think there's a question what's wrong with this picture.

First of all, the NRA doesn't seem to realize that Big Bidness is it's friend. They lobby for the same things, and a big portion of the NRAs membership and bought representatives are equally married to Big Bidness interests.

Second, they seem blind to the fact that they're on the wrong side of a a private property issue, which is near and dear to the hearts of their membership.

Third, this boycott will be a test of how dedicated their following is, which may not pan out the way they hope.

For example, if one of their loyalists is on the way to a hunting lodge, or sniper rampage or whatever, will they pass by a Phillips66 station when the guage is on E? And will this lead to cheating on their Chevron station when it's closed and the 76 station is open? It's a moral dilemna, doncha think?

And what about air travel. Phillips 66 is a big player in airline fuel. How can they tell if Phillips fueled the plane they're flying on? For all they know, LaPierre is violating his own boycott when he's traveling around promoting his boycott.

In fact, it's almost inevitable that Phillips 66 Aviation is involved in fueling military aircraft. By boycotting ConocoPhillips, the NRA could be interfering with the war effort, and therefore:

The NRA does not support our troops!

It appears that the rattlesnakes are beginning to commit suicide.


  • My Suburban is nearly out of gas. I think I'll find a Conoco station, and put in about 35 gallons. I'll be broke, but it might make up for a couple of NRA jeeps!

    By Blogger Ronni, at 11:34 PM  

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