April 10th, 2002


Pink Pistols: Armed Gays Don't Get Bashed

I love this: Pink Pistols.

From http://www.pinkpistols.org/newspapers/washblade.html:

Diversity aside, there is still the "pistols" half of the Pink Pistols equation. The Pink Pistols may be bridging communities by bringing together Gays, straights, and a variety of categories in between, to find common ground on the shooting range. Although the Pink Pistols have fostered some friendships, they have also stirred some animosity. Via the Boston chapter, for example, the Pink Pistols have publicly criticized openly Gay Massachusetts state Sen. Cheryl A. Jacques (D) for her primary sponsorship of a tough 1998 gun law.

"From a civil rights standpoint, the law is horrifying," complained David Rostcheck in a prepared statement released by the Pink Pistols. The release described Rostcheck as "an activist with the Pink Pistols, a civil rights group that protects the rights of shooters with alternative sexualities."

The Rostcheck quote continued: "It’s racist, classist, sexist, homophobic, and it discriminates against the elderly and disabled. When people actually sit down and read it, even ardent gun-control advocates are shocked at what it legitimizes. A police chief can deny a license to a legally qualified person based on their gender, their housing, their sexual orientation — absolutely anything they want. Jesse Helms never managed to pass legislation this discriminatory."

At greatest issue was an aspect of Jacques’s law that included discretionary licensing. Although the Pink Pistols criticism has not had any effect on the law, a Gay gun group’s public criticism of a Gay legislator’s gun law did boost the Pink Pistols national profile in the form of press coverage. The group’s feud with Jacques has been mentioned in The Patriot Ledger and Daily Free Press, both Massachusetts newspapers. Of course, they made no friend out of Jacques.

"I fully respect that they have a different point of view than I do but, frankly, they’re misguided and misinformed," Jacques told the Blade. "They’ve called on me to repeal the law. They’ve raised sexual orientation as an issue. This law has nothing to do with sexual orientation. … I think they, for some reason, think they have some special standing because of their sexual orientation. As far as I’m concerned, they’re just another chapter of the NRA. … There is nothing unique about their call to arms, to use a bad pun."