Yesterday, a National Review opinion piece with the bizarre title "Why Young Women Want AR-15s" was being promoted at Fox Nation. Today, NewsBusters is hyping the piece.
The article reads in part:
... In the wake of mass murders like Sandy Hook and the horrific rapes and murders of thousands of women each year, pepper spray, mace, or five-round handheld pistols aren't going to cut it.The authors are two young women named Celia Bigelow and Aubrey Blankenship:
So what's a girl to do? When choosing our tool for home defense, we want the best -- in accuracy, handling, and aesthetics. The best choice by all three criteria is -- hands down — the AR-15....
The AR-15 is lightweight and practical. As light as five pounds, it produces low levels of recoil, and it's easy to shoot....
Accuracy? Check. Ease in handling? Check. Intimidation factor? Check. An AR-15 might be a woman's best friend....
Both work for American Majority Action. AMA is the 501(c)(4) affiliate of a 501(c)(3) group called American Majority, which has been deeply involved in the Koch-ization of Wisconsin under Governor Scott Walker. As the Awl notes:
American Majority was founded by Ned and Drew Ryun, sons of longtime Kansas Republican Representative Jim Ryun. (Yes, Kansas, home of the Kochs.) Jim Ryun's federal campaign finance report reads like a list of tens of thousands of dollars from the Kochs, going all the way back to 1997.Do I think this is money well spent? No, I think it's very poorly spent -- wingnut billionaires (the Kochs and others) pay a couple of young female employees to try to generate buzz by arguing that assault weapons are weapons of female empowerment ... and the article gets placed at the dowdy National Review, then picked up by a couple of other sites that no one outside the obsessed right ever reads. (Other efforts to do right-wing outreach to young women, like the Christian-right women's magazine Glenn Reynolds recently shilled for, haven't amounted to much, either.)
American Majority was organized by, and receives a great deal of its funding through, the Chicago-based Sam Adams Alliance, which carefully protects the list of its patrons and has gone to pains (though not effectively enough) to remove evidence that it is in large part funded by the Kochs. American Majority is also partnered with Koch organizations that don't hide the Koch connection at all, like Americans for Prosperity.
Sam Adams Alliance is very much funded by the Kochs -- but even if they were not, Eric O'Keefe, the chairman and CEO of the Sam Adams Alliance, is also a board member at the Institute for Humane Studies, a group which has received millions from the Kochs and for which Charles Koch is the chairman.
But it's worth remembering that the Kochs and others are generally very interested in advancing the cause of the gun industry, even though that would seem to have nothing to do with the plutocrats' economic interests.
Why? A libertarian fondness for the Second Amendment? Or perhaps a desire to keep part of the population angry at "gun-grabbers" so they don't notice that the rich are really robbing them blind? Hard to say.