Who are the real Americans? Surprise! Liberals are!

Timothy Noah ARGUES that the demographics of the current debate over guns shows that the so-called real Americans out there are not who most people think they are.

The current debate over gun control is one of several signs that liberalism is back, sort of. President Barack Obama gave a second inaugural speech forthrightly celebrating liberal principles (equality, environmental stewardship, collective action) and didn’t get impeached. More Americans now support gay marriage than oppose it. Universal health care survived a Supreme Court challenge and a presidential election. Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge has lost its juju.

The catch is that it’s still not entirely acceptable to be a liberal. It remains common, when making a liberal argument, to shroud it in non-liberal language….The lingering taboo is anthropological rather than ideological. Liberals are judged inauthentic because (at least according to stereotype) they live in cities, avoid church, and don’t own guns; they consequently feel the need to describe themselves using other terms.


We think of rural-heartland dwellers as real Americans, but they currently represent less than 20 percent of the population; nearly all of us live in and around cities. We think of churchgoers as real Americans, but only 40 percent of Americans attend any kind religious services at least once a week; most of us sleep in. We think of people who own guns as real Americans, but they represent only 21 percent of the population; the great majority of us don’t own guns. All these percentages reflect declines over the past few decades. The percent owning guns, for instance, is down by about one-third since 1985.

If liberals (defined in admittedly cartoonish fashion as non-churchgoing, non-gun-owning urbanites) represent an unacknowledged majority of Americans, hunters represent an unacknowledged minority—indeed, a minority of the minority of Americans who own guns. “Hunting” ranks behind  “protection against crime” and “target shooting” as the stated reason for owning a gun. According to the most recent survey by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, less than 5 percentof the U.S. population reported doing any hunting in 2011. Even as liberals quake at the thought of disrespecting the animal-shooting masses, actual hunters fret that their numbers have dwindled during the past two decades by more than 11 percent.



  1. Yes stifle free speech if it doesn’t fit!

    I am sure you support the columnist?

    How more more American can you get
    “Teacher on leave after allegedly forcing students to sign vote for Obama pledge”

    These are real liberals

  2. Liberals may be the “real” Americans but they were pretty stupid to believe this story.


    If Gov. Scott Walker is still planning to move ahead with a plan to sell off hundreds of millions of dollars in power plants to help pay for some of the borrowing to fund his $6.4 billion transportation plan, Koch Industries isn’t in a buying mood.

    Melissa Cohlmia, a Koch Industries spokeswoman, said Monday that the company has no interest in buying any of the 37 power and heating plants.

    “Koch Industries had no interest in Wisconsin’s publicly owned power plants when this issue came up in 2011, and we continue to have absolutely no interest. As was the case when this false storyline emerged in 2011, the plants are obsolete and do not in any way fit Koch companies’ current operations or business plans moving forward.”

  3. doc: Get serious!

    When it comes to believing ridiculous stories, conservative nitwits are way, way ahead of liberals.

    You’d have to blind and deaf to think otherwise.

  4. Here is another Liberal Dimwit American, “you’d have to blind and deaf to think otherwise”.

    Democratic lawmaker apologizes for suggesting women afraid of rape can’t be trusted with guns

    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2013/02/18/democratic-lawmaker-apologizes-for-suggesting-women-afraid-of-rape-cant-be-trusted-with-guns/#ixzz2LMxea6lz

  5. “Survey Suggests Yes, Liberals Tend to Be Hypocrites on Obama Policies”

    “n a YouGov poll of 1,000 voters last August, [political scientist Michael] Tesler found significantly more support for targeted killing of suspected terrorists among white “racial liberals” (i.e., those liberal on issues of race) and African Americans when they were told that Obama supported such a policy than when they were not told it was the president’s policy. Only 27 percent of white racial liberals in a control group supported the targeted killing policy, but that jumped to 48 percent among such voters who were told Obama had conducted such targeted killings”


  6. Luke Fredrickson

    The “Obama cue” from the reason.com piece is a gargantuan red herring.

    As I have said before, there is no mystery why self-described liberals would feel better about a dubious policy if they know Obama supports it. They trust his judgment. What a shocker.

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