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Martin Luther King, Jr. speaking at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul
The Republican Party of Multnomah County, Oregon, got in a bit of hot water when they decided to raffle off an AR-15 rifle for their Lincoln Day fundraising dinner, a move that was a supposed "celebration" of Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. (No, they really thought raffling off a gun to "honor" two of America's most infamous assassinations via firearm. Got their finger on the throbbing pulse of America, those Republicans.)

No, for some reason this stunt did not go over well, which is why the party felt the need to respond to clarify their position. In retrospect, they probably should not have tried.

In our enthusiasm for celebrating Martin Luther King and Abraham Lincoln and the U.S. Constitution, our Multnomah Republican Party issued a press release that was unfortunately easily misunderstood. The GOP stands for individual liberty, lower taxes, smaller government and individual responsibility. We apologize if people were hurt by the message being marred by insufficient wording and/or cynical misinterpretations by those who disagree with us politically. We will certainly endeavor to communicate more clearly in the future, and learn and grow from this experience.
You might also not raffle off guns in "celebration" of great Americans murdered by them, but I understand—baby steps.

Shall we continue below the fold?

Both Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King delivered speeches in defense of American liberty and freedom that will live forever in the hearts and minds of the American people. They gave their lives for his cause.
More specifically, they were shot for their causes. They also did things other than give speeches, but all of those other things are considerably less comfortable for modern Republicans to write press releases about.
Martin Luther King's famous "dream" speech is an eloquent, timeless appeal for the Constitutional rights of African Americans, who, at the time, were being denied those rights. His speech is even more relevant today than when he delivered it 50 years ago.
This may be the first time a Republican press release has ever asserted that appealing for the Constitutional rights of African Americans is "even more relevant nowadays" then during Martin Luther King's day. Oh, wait—false alarm. What they mean is that now white folks are being even more oppressed, because Obamacare and stuff.
Today, powerful elements within our political establishment are working to suppress the Constitutional rights of all Americans. Our rights to freedom in choosing our own medical care, our freedom to build businesses to enhance the lives of ourselves and our neighbors, our freedom to be free of debt, our freedom to be free of oppressive taxes and misguided regulations, and yes our freedom to defend our lives under the Second Amendment - all are under attack.
Let me clean that up for you. Today, powerful elements within our political establishment are working to suppress the Constitutional rights of all Americans. Our rights to freedom in not being able to afford medical care, our freedom to build businesses that dump chemicals into our water supply without consequence, our freedom to something something silver coins Ron Paul 2012, our freedom to pretend that the same tax rates we paid under any other president are suddenly oppressive under the new black one, and yes our freedom to shoot people like Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King if they start getting all up in America's grill about how we treat certain Americans—all are under attack.

Sorry I can't do more with that, fellas. My fluency in Batshit Crazy Person has been dwindling ever since the new tea-based dialects have come into vogue. Probably should have tossed something about how living under Barack Obama is worse than slavery.

The great political issue today is whether or not the American people of all creeds and races will live free or live as slaves - slaves to their own overreaching government. 50 years ago, Martin Luther King's great speech was an appeal for freedom for African Americans. Today, those same words he spoke 50 years ago are an appeal for freedom for all Americans.
Aaaaah, there we go. It's not an actual Republican press release unless you compare the conservative outrage of the moment to actual, historical slavery. Obamacare? Slavery. Not being able to carry your gun to the movie theater? Slavery. Getting nationwide attention for your dumbass idea to "celebrate" Martin Luther King by auctioning off a rifle? Slaaaaaveeeery.

Look, Republicans, this really isn't hard. Unless you are currently in slavery, please do not compare things to slavery. Don't do it! Don't explain what it's like to be a women to women, don't tell black Americans how they could be better black Americans, don't raffle off guns to prove your respect for assassinated people, don't compare obsequiously industry-friendly overhauls of our staggeringly broken healthcare system to slavery. When in doubt, in fact, maybe just don't say anything at all.

Originally posted to Hunter on Mon Jan 20, 2014 at 04:05 PM PST.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA, PDX Metro, Firearms Law and Policy, Koscadia, Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), and Daily Kos.

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