Gun grabbers across the nation are doing their part to “never let a serious crisis go to waste” by pushing for gun control after five police officers were tragically killed at a “Black Lives Matter” protest in Dallas. In Texas, Democrats and a lone Republican are seizing upon the catastrophe as an opportunity to deliver a strike against citizens’ constitutional rights.

Despite the fact that at least one protester legally and safely open carried at the protest, one Republican lawmaker is even arguing that those rights should end where city limit signs begin. Writing in the lobbyist-bureaucrat tabloid Quorum Report, State Rep. Jason Villalba (R-Dallas) stated that the right to keep and bear arms that “shall not be infringed” should be subject to city limit signs.

“I think we need to respect their guidance and have a conversation about how the new open carry laws are implemented in large, heavily-populated, urban centers,” said Villalba. “As well, it is now clear that permit-less carry, or ‘Constitutional Carry’ as some call it, should be completely off the table.”

The op-ed drew criticism from State Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford) who called out Villalba on Twitter resulting in a sharp response.

Villalba Tweet

Perhaps embarrassed at the “ignorance” of his statement, Villalba has since deleted the tweet.

It isn’t the first time Villalba has pushed for cities to be able to crush citizen rights. When the open carry legislation was proceeding through the Texas House last year, Democrat State Rep. Rafael Anchia of Dallas unsuccessfully proposed an amendment allowing cities to ban the practice within their limits.

Telling fellow lawmakers “it is the right thing to do,” Villalba was the only Republican to join Democrats in supporting the motion.

Fortunately for the constitutional rights of citizens, Villalba amounts to little more than a rodeo clown in the Texas Legislature. Indeed, if his stance on this issue is at all similar to most that he has claimed to espouse then Texans have little reason to worry.

Rather than being driven by strong and passionate belief, Villalba is motivated by what appears to be equal parts of desire for the spotlight and chronic addiction to his own shoe leather.

On most issues, Villalba’s trademark tactic is a simple four step program.

  1. Gain attention by making an absurd and assertive statement on an important issue
  2. Mount an incapable and pathetic defense of the position on social media
  3. Delete the embarrassing tweets and foolish Facebook posts
  4. Publicly abandon the legislation and position previously espoused

Such was the case with Villalba’s harebrained proposal to criminalize citizens from filming police officers that drew him nationwide condemnation and ridicule. His plan to stand up for religious liberty went the same way after criticism from the Big Business lobby. On sanctuary cities, Villalba first opposed “divisive legislation” targeting them then he said they should end and that he would file a bill to outlaw them.

While Villalba himself may be harmless, his oafish outcries are actually something conservatives should pay attention to. Though only a cog in the coalition government of the Texas House, Villalba serves as a canary in the coal mine to alert conservatives of what is on the near horizon. As a result, gun owners should be ready to defend open carry when the legislature returns.

 

Cary Cheshire

Cary Cheshire is the Vice President of Texans for Fiscal Responsibility. A 6th Generation Texan, Cary attended Texas A&M University was active in a number of conservative causes including Ted Cruz's Senate campaign. He has also worked on campaigns to elect conservatives to Congress and the Texas Legislature. Cary enjoys college football, genealogy research, and the occasional craft beer.

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