By David Codrea
USA – -(Ammoland.com)- Practically everyone, including conservative and gun rights groups, reacted with understandable outrage to rocker and RKBA diehard Ted Nugent’s Facebook post of a graphic featuring Jewish anti-gun politicians with Israeli flags.
While quick to distance themselves from a celebrity they’d have happily claimed as an ally the day before his ill-conceived post, none of his detractors even attempted to contact him afterward to ask if accusations of anti-Semitism were true.
Wanting to understand what he was thinking and how he managed to make himself a media target for charges of anti-Semitism, Nicki Kenyon of The Zelman Partisans spoke with Nugent, and found her group was alone in asking him what happened. Additionally, Nugent took TZP up on an offer it made a week earlier and ended up joining the group.
The recently-formed organization is comprised of former members of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, who split off in disagreement following JPFO’s acquisition by the Second Amendment Foundation. Naming themselves in honor of JPFO’s founder, the late Aaron Zelman, TZP activists who knew and worked closely with Zelman consider themselves more in keeping with his fiercely uncompromising nature, and believe their approach to be truer to the legacy their friend, colleague and mentor would have wanted.
Perhaps there’s something to that, as JPFO, instead of reaching out to Nugent, merely issued a statement decrying his post. And while they are correct (in a Captain Obvious kind of way) that “Aaron Zelman, founder of Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership was far from anti-gun,” the statement ignores that Zelman reserved some of his harshest criticism for Jewish citizen disarmament proponents, and even coined the term “bagel brained Jews” to describe them.
In many ways, Aaron Zelman and Ted Nugent were alike, particularly in not worrying about who might be offended.
“Do Jewish leaders want us all to be victims?” Zelman asked in one powerful essay. He’s also the man who, in his trademark politically-incorrect, take-on-all-comers style, told the Anti-Defamation League to “burn in hell.”
People are going to have their opinions about Nugent and about what he posted on his Facebook page, and on his adamant refusal since then to back down. In a way, that works in his favor against those who will now claim he only spoke with Kenyon and TZP as a pandering move to try and ingratiate himself back into the good graces of those calling for his expulsion from the NRA Board. He just doesn’t appear to be the type of guy to back down or to bow to political correctness.
Was it ill-conceived? Considering how easy it is to trace back to true anti-Semites who have used the same graphic, it was certainly thoughtless, and Nugent admits as much.
Was it evidence of bigotry? Of course not.
And those tripping all over themselves to distance themselves from Nugent ought to know better. What are you guys afraid of, that Media Matters and The Huffington Post will say mean things about you? Like they won't regardless of how much you try to appear “reasonable“?
My own takeaway from this? I’ve not involved myself that much in Nugent’s doings, aside from writing an article critical of his supporting Tom Tancredo, given some of that politician’s bipolar positions on guns. I’m hardly in the tank for the guy – I’m just looking at what makes sense to me.
On the other hand, I go back years with Nicki, and if there’s one person who will not mince words and is not afraid to rip into someone who deserves it – and colorfully – just ask her readers how timid and reserved they think she is. I’m pretty sure if she perceived Ted was BSing her, she wouldn’t be afraid to publicly field dress the guy, and maybe even not just metaphorically.
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating / defending the RKBA and a long-time gun rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament.