I have to admit that I am surprised it has taken this long. The left and the Islamic front in this country is thoroughly embedded and I am not surprised that these people would immediately turn to government, in this case, the state of Texas, on the basis of discrimination. These people all complain about the importance of the first Amendment when it suits them, but when it doesn’t, well, they will ignore it as long as they are able. Crockett Keller has the right to refuse service to anybody he wishes, on any basis whatever, and what the complainers will now contend is that since he is certified by the state of Texas to be a Concealed Handgun License instructor, that anti-discrimination laws extend to him.
KVUE is reporting that the State is now considering whether to deprive him of this source of revenue, and guess what? Keller isn’t backing down. Good for him!
If you haven’t heard the radio advertisement at the heart of the controversy, I covered it here. Patriots, many of us got a chuckle from this ad, but Mr. Keller’s rights are no laughing matter. He has a right to decide with whom he will do business, and if the State doesn’t like it, that’s too bad for the State. In KVUE’s story, Keller is reported to have said the following:
“I call it exercising my right to choose who I instruct in how to use a dangerous weapon,” said Keller.
Indeed. Frankly, in my view, he’s exercising a responsibility of instructors under the law. If you missed his original disclaimer, he said:
“If you are a socialist liberal and/or voted for the current campaigner-in-chief, please do not take this class. You have already proven that you cannot make a knowledgeable and prudent decision as required under the law. Also, if you are a non-Christian Arab, or Muslim, I will not teach you the class. Once again, with no shame, I am Crockett Keller[phone number omitted.] Thank you and God bless America.”
Two things are apparent to me from the KVUE story:
By virtue of the KVUE reporter’s punctuation, the reader is being slightly misled. These were not precisely the words Mr. Keller spoke, or the way in which he spoke them. My quotation above is verbatim, directly from the radio ad, minus only his phone number, as noted.
The KVUE story has omissions and punctuation that change slightly the meaning, in a nuanced fashion. It’s reasonably accurate, but I would prefer in a case of such controversy that the reporter would bother to get it 100% right.
Nevertheless, I am still inclined to say that Mr. Keller’s right to do commerce with whomever he pleases. His first Amendment rights apply also.
Back to the KVUE story, it reports that a statement has been released by the Texas Department of Public Safety on the matter:
“The Texas Department of Public Safety certifies individuals to teach coursework and provide training required to be taken by individuals seeking to qualify for a Texas concealed handgun license. Certified instructors are required to comply with all applicable state and federal statutes. Conduct by an instructor that denied service to individuals on the basis of race, ethnicity or religion would place that instructor’s certification by the Department at risk of suspension or revocation. The Department became aware of the statements in question yesterday and has begun an investigation into the matter. The Department will take appropriate administrative action based on the findings from the investigation.”
Given the inaccurate quote of Mr. Keller’s ad as posted in the story on KVUE, I have made a request of the TxDPS for a link to their full statement if it is posted online, or otherwise confirm the statement for accuracy and completeness. If this turns out to be accurate, I will be making a recommendation to all my readers who care about free speech and matters of conscience. This issue has come up in other forms before, for instance in the case of doctors who do not wish for reasons of conscience to perform the procedure, whether they were in the military, or in a corporate health-care environment. In any event, I am waiting to see what TxDPS provides. I will update this story as more information becomes available.
I’ll be honest with you. If you voted for Obama, I don’t think you have the requisite judgment to carry a handgun, concealed or otherwise, particularly if you’re now contemplating voting for him again. I can just hear the scowling of leftists. They always whine about “choice” and “conscience” when it comes down to what they will or won’t do, but let some poor old guy in west-central Texas express his choice and his conscience, and they go crazy.