No, I’m Not “Fighting Fascism”

I’m sure a lot of readers have “Googlegangers,” someone with your name whose writings, life-events, legal activities or friends/enemies pop up when you enter your own self. My most famous one is a veteran Buffalo sportscaster who for obvious reasons dominates the Google Image Search of our common name. There are various and sundry other Ed Kilgores out there, my name being more common in the Scots-Irish Diaspora than you might think.

The only political Ed Kilgore I’m aware of, however, is the current Sheriff of Humboldt County, Nevada. And I bring him up because he’s getting press for having joined with other sheriffs in announcing the intention to defy any gun laws that emanate from the Obama administration, per this report from a Reno TV station:

Humboldt County Nevada Sheriff Ed Kilgore Friday sent a letter to Vice President Biden blasting the possibility of new gun laws following an “emotional tragedy”. The letter continues to read, “As such, the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office in Nevada will use my discretion and not enforce any new gun laws that may appear unconstitutional.”

Sheriff Kilgore also wrote, “In Humboldt County, Nevada, we enjoy the freedoms that the United States Constitution allows each and every one of us. The fact that this current administration seeks to arbitrarily take away one of the very fundamental freedoms that we all are afforded strikes directly at the core of what we value as Americans.” The Sheriff continued to write, “The fact remains that banning particular firearms and restricting magazine capacities will not stop criminals from using firearms to do harm. The firearm is not the problem. There needs to be a concerted effort towards the mental health topic as it relates to firearms.”

The letter ends with the Sheriff saying he believes the gun control issues should be handled at the state level and concludes, “You are on notice that my constituents and I will not assist in this attempt to strip previously given Constitutional rights away.”

A separate bulletin from a right-wing website lists my Googleganger as one of 127 sheriffs across the country whose “swelling ranks…lead the charge against fascism.”

Stout fellows, aren’t they?

Well, I’ve said a lot of rather negative things about people whose public policy views do not accord with my own, including those who believe they have the right to stockpile weapons in case they decide it’s time to violently overthrow the federal (or presumably state and local) governments. But I try to draw the line well before calling them “fascist,” much as I am sometimes tempted by their authoritarian attitudes and contempt for democracy.

So if you want to distinguish me from Sheriff Kilgore of Humboldt County, Nevada, I’m the one who isn’t “fighting fascism.” Just ignorance, bigotry, and inequality.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.