Guns | NRA

Meet Chris Cheng, a Gay Gun-Rights Activist Changing the Face of the NRA: VIDEO

Screenshot 2014-08-09 12.43.44

Chris Cheng, a former Googler and winner of the History Channel’s fourth season of Top Shot, is an openly gay man on a mission to change the face of gun rights activism. Profiled in the Atlantic this week, Cheng reflected on how going public with his long-time passion for firearms gave him the push to officially come out in hopes of beginning a conversation about queer proponents of the Second Amendment.

Following his Top Shot win Cheng signed on as an NRA news analyst, solidly orienting his career towards gun advocacy.

"I think that this is an opportunity for the NRA and our community to accurately portray the diversity that already exists in the community,” Cheng explained.  "We've allowed some prevailing stereotypes to take hold, and we're not challenging them."

The conversation around gay gun rights activists is a complicated one. Organizations like The Pink Pistols blur the line between a  conservative defense of the Second Amendment, a social club, and a movement designed to empower gay individuals to fight homophobia by arming themselves. By and large the march of progress for LGBTQ rights has been powered by activism on the left, while gun advocacy is grounded firmly on the right. Cheng, whose Wikipedia page claims that he has expressed interest in pursuing public office, has staked out a spot for himself that, aside from his views on guns, is politically neutral.

“I do plan on advocating for gay rights.” Cheng told late last year. “Rights are rights, and the concepts of liberty and freedom equally apply to gun and gay rights in my book. I do not expect people to agree with my positions on either, but I do expect the freedom to exercise my rights as an American, in the pursuit of happiness.”

Watch Chris Cheng’s first appearance as an NRA commentator AFTER THE JUMP...


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  1. Even gays have the right to be idiots.

    Posted by: Richard | Aug 9, 2014 2:05:05 PM

  2. He's beyond idiotic. Most of the people who cling to their guns in this country would happily use them on gays if they could get away with it.

    Posted by: odee | Aug 9, 2014 2:10:53 PM

  3. well, the Pink Pistols are a bunch of f***ing idiots - that mealy-faced leader of theirs decries how "liberals make it harder for gays to get guns" or something - without ever backing up his claims, (backup of which would be that each gay victim of a violent crime TRIED to get a gun but COULDN'T because "the liberal agenda made it harder")

    i've managed to fight homophobia for years without a gun. know how? i have a spine. a voice. and a pair of orbs

    to walk around armed would be to concede defeat - and accept that society has failed. an armed populace is the mark of a failed culture.

    the goalie should have? for people to feel safe and secure WITHOUT EXERCISING the second amendment. i'll never own a gun. i'll never walk around each day in fear. that's freedom. that's courage.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Aug 9, 2014 2:14:24 PM

  4. This whole thing makes my stomach turn. The "tyranny" of government he's railing against, could equally be applied to owners of guns; after all guns can be used to target "protected" minorities, and many of these NRA nutjobs are intolerant paranoid whites.

    Posted by: Ulu | Aug 9, 2014 2:25:16 PM

  5. Anyone who has "a passion for firearms" is insane. Why would him being gay matter?

    Posted by: Bart | Aug 9, 2014 2:26:04 PM

  6. A gay shill is still a shill.

    Posted by: Pervy McPerv | Aug 9, 2014 2:33:20 PM

  7. Very interesting. Guns aren't going away and the resistance to them isn't either. The two sides keep re-creating each other. I wouldn't intentionally get into this for anything.

    Posted by: UFFDA | Aug 9, 2014 2:39:42 PM

  8. Does he know he's supporting an organizations where the majority of the members thinks the government's waging a #waronwhite?

    Posted by: radtastic | Aug 9, 2014 2:41:24 PM

  9. the NRA's board is packed with conservatives with long histories of being stridently anti-gay

    Posted by: slv | Aug 9, 2014 2:42:43 PM

  10. Little Kiwi brings it again. Orbs lol.

    Posted by: stranded | Aug 9, 2014 3:02:57 PM

  11. Why does legal firearm ownership scare some people, gay or otherwise? In many places and situations having a gun,shotgun, or rifle could absolutely save your life or get you out of a bad situation. Police are not everywhere at all times and rarely are they around when assaults, rapes, murders, home invasions, and so-on occur, they show up after the fact most of the time. As gays I should think most would be pleased to know they have the legal right to own firearms. The rest of the typical drival from most commenters is related to political correctness and party/ideological narrative and talking points. EVERYTHING on the 'progressive' far left seems to revolve around how evil white patriarchy (males, females get a big pass because they are integral to the 'coalition') out to victimize and hate 'brown' people, African Americans, females, and of course 'sexual minorities'. It's all about 'outrage' over this or that situation, incident, real or percieved / faux 'slight',etc. It's all about keeping people on edge, angry and divided, while claiming the mantle of inclusion.

    I'm grateful I have a legal right as a law abiding citizen to own firearms, for whatever the reason. If politicians and big shots in various industries avail themselves to own firearms, and/or have armed bodyguards, why shouldn't I or any other law abiding citizen? Let them disarm themselves and dump their bodyguards, then maybe we can talk. Ain't gonna happen.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Aug 9, 2014 3:05:02 PM

  12. Perhaps some men feel the need for a gun to compensate for other short comings.....

    Posted by: Mike in nyc | Aug 9, 2014 3:09:50 PM

  13. My father, rest his soul, should have owned a gun the night he died from a perforated anus after being the bottom of a black on white gang bang. He could have shot his way out of it, but instead he bottomed his way into a grave. Oh well. At least he died happy. And full of male ejaculate, and not bullets.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Aug 9, 2014 3:10:14 PM

  14. Asian and a gun nut... my god, you must need an electron microscope to see it.

    Posted by: crispy | Aug 9, 2014 3:13:47 PM

  15. Scratching my head over this one...

    I guess the new 'in' thing for all rightwing groups is to trot out a gay- specifically a gay as opposed to multiple gays- and see if we don't slather our support on their cause as a sign of appreciation. FWIW- I think one can think people have the right to gun ownership without taking it to NRA levels. I believe a propensity to be a criminal and bring the crazy should negate those rights. If the NRA were smart they would be pushing for better mental health services and more law enforcement in inner city neighborhoods most hit by crime. But they are not...

    Posted by: robroy | Aug 9, 2014 3:30:17 PM

  16. This community really does know how to pour on the hate.

    I am a West Coast liberal. My partner is Southerner and proud gun owner. I work in healthcare and have seen innumerable people who have been victims of gun accidents and gun violence, often with tragic consequences.

    While I do not support all of Chris' views, I can understand them. He is an intelligent, young man who has made many positive contributions to his community. He has attended some of the best universities in the world, worked for Google, co-founded a nonprofit to find housing for the needy, speaks fluent Spanish, and helped raise money for various charitable foundations. He has also come out as gay to a group that is often dismissive of ethnic and sexual minorities. He has put himself and his views out there to make a positive difference in the world. What you have done?

    Too often those do very little, only contribute negativity to those who strive and achieve positive change in the world.

    Posted by: Anon | Aug 9, 2014 3:44:11 PM

  17. "By and large the march of progress for LGBTQ rights has been powered by activism on the left"

    Only about 100%!

    Posted by: KevinVt | Aug 9, 2014 3:45:02 PM

  18. He is completely, totally and one hundred percent correct: rights are rights. The constitution is just as clear on the right of people to bear arms as it is that all people should have due process and equal protection.

    Gays should be treated the same as non-gays and gun rights are protected, too. If you don't like it, change the constitution but don't chip away at our rights.

    Posted by: Peck | Aug 9, 2014 3:47:41 PM

  19. I long for the day when there are no gays left who have to attach themselves to right wing hate groups to make themselves feel better about themselves.

    I feel sorry for this guy. I hope one day he can man up and accept himself. The reality is these right wing hate groups will ALWAYS hate us no matter how much you try to pretend they won't.

    Time to MAN UP and GROW UP gays !

    Posted by: Icebloo | Aug 9, 2014 3:48:29 PM

  20. Peck

    The constitution supports the states via a well regulated militia to have arms not individuals

    The interpretation has been individuals but the constitution doesn't give that right per its exact words

    @ ratbastard, the majority have more issue with the support of the NRA that is full of homophobes instead of being anti gun. There is a difference between guns and supporting the NRA whose board is full of rabid homophobes

    Posted by: slv | Aug 9, 2014 3:55:06 PM

  21. OH wow, what an idiot.

    Posted by: Honesty | Aug 9, 2014 4:00:12 PM

  22. Never mind the specifics about this individual.

    If you're gay and you're allowed to own a gun, you should.

    If you're gay and you're allowed to carry a gun, you should.

    If you're gay and allowed to open carry a gun, you should.

    Think of this. Anti-gays who are allowed to carry guns are going to, and YOU ARE THE TARGET. YOU ARE THEIR 'DEVIL'. Homophobia is still institutionalized, and judges & police still side with gay-bashers and murderers of gays.

    Anybody who's against gays carrying guns like their oppressors do, WANT GAYS TO BE PURE VICTIMS - and THEY are the IDIOTS.

    You're gay and one of the Benham Brother's soldiers pulls a gun on you and YOU DON'T HAVE ONE - what do you do? Lay down and die? Take a picture with your phone?!

    All gays should be getting ready. It's open season in this world, and if you're not ready to fight then you must prepare yourself to be a VICTIM and DIE.


    Posted by: Kali | Aug 9, 2014 4:05:01 PM

  23. @ANON: Thank you for pointing out those qualities in Chris. It's easy to seem dismissive online and I want to say that these contributions are indeed worthy and I am in awe that someone could do so much for others.

    However, all those contributions don't mean his position as a promoter of the NRA shouldn't be criticized. I have no love for guns or investment in the mythology of how happy they make people. I recognise that some people view the second amendment as a god-given right to intimidate others. For some, shooting a well-made machine in target practice is both a skill and an art, and I have no problem accepting that.

    But the NRA has become an agent of death in a gun-obsessed culture where innocents are slaughtered daily. They absolutely do not represent responsible and compassionate gun ownership. The NRA's message is a corruption of the second amendment and it seems to me that anyone who really cares about the spirit of humane citizenship would want to protect the innocents if we are in fact a just nation.

    I can respect this guy's relationship with his guns. I think he's a hypocrite for shilling for the NRA.

    Posted by: stranded | Aug 9, 2014 4:11:15 PM

  24. Ooooooh, gurl, she said "OVER AND OUT" ... so you know we got a badass over here.

    Posted by: crispy | Aug 9, 2014 4:13:46 PM

  25. Ooooooh, gurl, check my snarky performance art over here. I'm real real clever. Laugh at my funny joke!
    This is exactly the kind of post for s*its and giggles.
    Don't have anything substantial to add... but hey I'm funny as s*it! And I never learned how to behave online by trolls - I thought of it all by myself to respond to some stylistic expression that has no relevance to the reply to the post...

    Posted by: CRISPY | Aug 9, 2014 4:26:21 PM

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