Texas lawmaker in NRA's pocket argues his state can't accept Syrian refugees because it's too easy to purchase firearms in it

Rep. Tony Dale believes easy access to firearms more important than lives of refugees escaping murderous regimes


Scott Eric Kaufman
November 17, 2015 10:23PM (UTC)

In a letter to Texas lawmakers, State Representative Tony Dale (R-Cedar Park) argued that the state should not accept any Syrian refugees because its lax gun-purchasing regulations would make it easy for any terrorists hiding among them to acquire a weapon and carry out an attack.

Why are those gun-purchasing policies so lax? Because legislators with "A" ratings from the NRA, like Dale, have effectively prevented the state from implementing any effective gun control legislation for the better part of two decades.

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As ThinkProgress' Josh Israel noted, Dale "and his colleagues in the state legislature have blocked mandatory background checks for all gun purchases." Combine the lack of a mandatory background check with what Dale, in a letter to Senator Jon Cornyn, characterized as an insufficiently "robust" screening process and it's not difficult to "imagine a scenario were [sic] a refugees [sic] is admitted to the United States, is provided with federal cash payments and other assistance, obtains a drivers license and purchases a weapon and executes an attack."

Dale's hypocrisy here is stunning, but utterly predictable -- his definition of "a good guy with a gun" actually boils down to "a white Christian with a gun."

Moreover, he's unwittingly advocating a policy of almost unimaginable cruelty -- better a white Texan have easy access to firearms than a Syrian refugee be afforded shelter from a murderous regime. If that's what's required to defend the mansion on the hill, the question becomes, is it even worth defending anymore?

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Watch a report on Dale's decision below via Fox 7 Austin.

Watch the GOP's ludicrous responses to the Syrian refugee crisis:

[jwplayer file="http://media.salon.com/2015/11/GOP_Refugees.Asha_.11.23.2105.mp4" image="http://media.salon.com/2015/09/syrian_refugees.jpg"][/jwplayer]

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Scott Eric Kaufman

Scott Eric Kaufman is an assistant editor at Salon. He taught at a university, but then thought better of it. Follow him at @scottekaufman or email him at skaufman@salon.com.

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Gun Control Representative Tony Dale Syrian Refugees Texas The Gop The Nra

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