As the battle to disarm America rages on between those of us that choose to personally defend ourselves by carrying a personal firearm and those that would choose to disarm Americans rages on, one South Carolina congressman stepped up to the plate to make his point in bold fashion.
U.S. Rep. Ralph Norman (S.C.-R) chose to pull out his own loaded .38-caliber h*****n and sat it on a table for several minutes during a scheduled “coffee with constituents” meeting about g*n violence prevention with his constituents at a Rock Hill restaurant. Norman was attempting to make a very valid point that inanimate objects do not commit crimes to those of his constituency that were calling for g*n control. Yet many are accusing Norman of everything from brandishing a weapon to committing a felony.
While making the point that g**s are only dangerous in the hands of criminals with his personal firearm sitting on the table in front of him, Norman then made the statement – “I’m not going to be a Gabby Giffords.” Norman was referring to the former Arizona congresswoman who was shot outside a grocery store during a constituent gathering in 2011 in Tucson, Arizona. Norman went on to state – “I don’t mind dying, but whoever shoots me better shoot well or I’m s******g back.”
- Republican congressman Ralph Norman
Since the statement, the husband of former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords chose to respond to Norman’s comments, stating Norman is “no Gabby Giffords” and noting his wife’s dedication to ending the g*n violence. Rather than focusing on education and training, Giffords and Kelly have chosen to advocate for g*n control laws aimed at reducing g*n violence. Kelly also called Norman an extremist who relies on intimidation tactics and perpetuates fear.
Kelly said in a statement – “Americans are increasingly faced with a stark choice: leaders like Gabby, who work hard together to find solutions to problems, or extremists like the NRA and Congressman Norman, who rely on intimidation tactics and perpetuating fear.”
Giffords and Kelly have campaigned and continue to actively campaign for full firearm confiscation believing that universal background checks are not enough. Meanwhile, Norman is a noted Conservative with the voting record to prove it.
Norman states he intends to display his personal firearm at future constituent meetings in an effort to make his point that people k**l people, g**s are simply tools. Norman states – “I’m tired of these liberals jumping on the g**s themselves as if they are the cause of the problem.”
Naturally, some were quick to condemn Norman’s actions. School teacher Lori Carter of Charlotte, North Carolina stated she thought Norman’s move was contradictory in that Norman has no idea if someone at the meeting might have had mental health issues or concerns. Carter stated – “What was to prevent me from leaning across the table to take that g*n?” Another woman said Norman’s actions upset her greatly as she felt “unsafe” by her representative’s actions.
“Lori Freeman, a volunteer group leader with Moms Demand Action in Fort Mill, said she found out about the meeting on the congressman’s Facebook page and decided to go after he rebuffed a previous meeting request on the heels of the February s******g of 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Fla.
Freeman thinks Norman might have been encouraged to take out his weapon by another constituent who was at the table Friday morning.
‘This gentleman offered up that he was concealed carrying, and he asked if we felt safer because he was concealed carry,’ Freeman said in a phone interview with CP. ‘Once the gentleman said he was concealed carry, that’s when [Rep. Norman] reached into his blazer. He pulled his g*n out, told us it was loaded, put it on the table, and let it sit there for five to 10 minutes.’
‘Honestly, it was just a strange feeling,’ Freeman said about Friday’s meeting. ‘I don’t know that I felt scared. I was trying to figure out if he was using it as an intimidation factor or to have some kind of bravado. I kind of felt angry more than I felt scared, I felt very angry that he was doing that to us. I felt that he didn’t know our history, if any of us were survivors of g*n or domestic violence, if anyone may have also had a criminal history.’
Freeman maintains that both of her encounters with Rep. Norman have been mostly pleasant and that he even expressed support for a ‘red flag law,’ which would allow family members or law enforcement to temporarily restrict g*n purchases to anyone deemed to pose a danger to themselves or others.”
The left was also quick to jump on the train of condemnation for Norman’s actions accusing him of committing a felony by simply setting a loaded firearm on the table as well as calling to have his permit to carry a personal firearm revoked. South Carolina Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Phil Noble released a statement in response to Norman’s actions claiming that sitting a loaded firearm on a table in a public setting should require a mandatory, 24-hour psych evaluation.
Noble stated –
“Let’s be clear on what happened today: Ralph Norman pulled out a loaded g*n, waved it around in a crowd of strangers, and then started ranting about former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords who was shot in the head in 2011 at a similar event. The fact is, if he didn’t have the word ‘Congressman’ in front of his name, he’d be undergoing a mandatory, 24-hour psych evaluation right now — and, frankly, that’s exactly where he belongs.”
The South Carolina Democratic Party (SCDP) has called on the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) to investigate Norman and revoke his permit to carry. SCDP Chairman Trav Robertson accused Norman of committing a felony, stating – “This is a felony offense and punishable by up to five years in prison. That’s why I will be sending an official request to SLED to investigate Congressman Norman’s dangerous actions. Rep. Norman only did this because he barely got elected the first time and needs votes. He’s worried about his campaign. This was a stunt and he should be punished for violating the law. I hope law enforcement moves swiftly to resolve the matter. It didn’t work for Roy Moore and it won’t work for Ralph Norman.”
Norman is a former state lawmaker and real estate developer from Rock Hill and he defeated Democrat Archie Parnell, a former tax attorney and business manager for Goldman Sachs from Sumter, in a special election due to Republican Mick Mulvaney’s appointment as budget director for the Trump administration.