In what can only be understood as conservative outrage word salad, Colorado Republican Congresswoman Lauren Boebert said during an interview last week that feminists, LGBTQ people, and transgender people share a single common goal of advancing communism, which she argued undermines Second Amendment rights.
“If you look at, for instance, the feminists and then the LGBTQ, well, feminists don’t really want transgender, you know, coming in and messing with women’s rights, but yet they’ll band together in unity and tout this message together. The one thing that they have in common is communism, and that is where we are heading,” Boebert told KHOW radio host Ross Kaminsky.
“Why are gun rights and the Second Amendment so important to you?” Kaminsky had asked Boebert, an incredibly straightforward question for a congresswoman who bases her entire identity on guns and has an oft-repeated backstory for why she cares so much about them. (The fact that her origin story appears to have been fabricated is beside the point.)
You may be wondering how that question led Boebert to assert that feminists and LGBTQ people are united only in their objective to bring communism to the United States. Here is Boebert’s full answer, which will still not clear things up:
“It’s basically so important because we look back on history and we see any government who has disarmed its people has done very bad things to their people, that’s where we have mass genocides and that’s where we have communist dictators and totalitarian control. And unfortunately, that is where we are headed here in America. If you look at all of these extreme groups, most of them have nothing in common. The only thing that they have in common is, I mean, if you look at, for instance, the feminists and then the LGBTQ, well, feminists don’t really want transgender, you know, coming in and messing with women’s rights, but yet they’ll band together in unity and tout this message together. The one thing that they have in common is communism, and that is where we are heading. And the Second Amendment, I’m sorry to disappoint them, but it has nothing to do with hunting, has nothing to do with hunting. This is our check on government.”
There’s a lot to unpack here. For starters, she refers to feminists, LGBTQ people, and transgender people as “extreme groups.” She also seems to have caught wind of the rise of a troubling brand of anti-trans feminism, which has taken off particularly in the U.K. (see TERF wars, J.K. Rowling.) The mainstream feminist movement is generally welcoming toward LGBTQ people, and despite what Boebert says, the feminist movement and the movement for LGBTQ equity have much in common: for example, advocacy against gender-based discrimination and violence, the eschewing of binary gender norms and heteronormativity, the fight for health care access, the dismantling of the idea that gender and sex should define our roles in society.
Figuring out how she got there from a simple question about guns requires some mental gymnastics, but it’s really not worth analyzing this as if it were a coherent thought. This can only be understood as an attempt to cram as many conservative rhetorical targets as possible into a single sentence. I, for one, am impressed that she managed to link together guns, communism, feminism, LGBTQ people, and then transgender people, specifically (the GOP’s favorite target of late), all in one breath.