I attended a gun show as a vendor this weekend. I don’t own any guns so I wasn’t selling those – I was selling knives and fishing gear. I wasn’t really sure what to expect at the gun show – I’ve never been to one.
Here’s what I thought it would be: survivalists, right wing militiamen, gun nuts, NRA and MAGA hats, tin foil conspiracy theorists, and lots of Trump lovers. I thought there would be crazy people buying guns to kill with and no regulation of any sort.
Here’s what I found – essentially it was like a Star Trek Convention but with models of tanks instead of Klingon warbirds and with guns instead of space memorabilia. Instead of people dressing up like Kirk, Spock, and Khan – they were dressed as cowboys, G.I.s, and Japanese soldiers. There were cool displays on the history of firearms, historic gun displays, and plenty of educational material. There were plenty of police around, people were generally funny, friendly, and reasonable. I only saw four MAGA hats and a couple of NRA and Second Amendment shirts – far less than I would see at an antique show in Oregon –
But keep in mind – this is a gun show in Hawaii – so it’s going to be pretty different. I thought it would be torturous but I ended up having fun, eating hot dogs and drinking soda with some nice folks, and selling a bit more than I would have at the flea market. There were no big Trump displays, no conspiracy theorist booths, and I really didn’t see any survivalist or bunker mentality militia stuff happening.
Although – there was a guy there who looked just like Steve Bannon.
My top seller of the weekend were tiny gold crosses that have knives hidden in them on dogtag chains. People loved those things.
There were a few political discussions, but I tried to keep my views on the low-down so I could feel how people felt and in general – people at a gun show in Hawaii didn’t seem to be too keen on Trump, but at the same time they all seem to think that Antifa is a fascist group (for the record, it stands for Anti-Fascist) and that there is a deep state conspiracy that has kept Trump from doing all the good he promised them he would do.
So, that’s worrisome. Even though these were some very reasonable, multi-cultural and open minded fun loving costume wearing gun lovers – they still think the only way to save America is to rally behind the guy who stole the presidency.
I’m hopeful for humanity but I’m pretty sure America is completely fucked.