‘Tell Me Again, Why Is Showing A Voter I.D. Voter Suppression’: Burgess Owens Slams Critics Of Voter I.D. Laws

"Racism in the old days hid behind white hoods. Now it hides behind fake profile pictures and fake names on Twitter espousing ‘woke’ ideals.”
Former NFL player Burgess Owens testifies during a hearing on slavery reparations held by the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties on June 19, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Zach Gibson/Getty Images

On Thursday, Rep. Burgess Owens (R-UT) directly confronted a critic who accused him of “bias” because he opposed two gun-control bills while approving of requiring voters to show an I.D. in order to vote. Owens fired back, “You know what’s racist? Assuming because I’m black that ‘I just don’t have the capability of getting an I-D.’ Disclaimer: We are capable of getting and I-D (and even using the internet!)”

Ownes added,“I used my I.D. to drive a car, to get a job, to board a plane, pick up prescriptions, and virtually everything else in life … So tell me again, why is showing an I.D. ‘Voter suppression’?”


On Thursday, Owens tweeted, “Want to see some serious racism? Study the history of how gun control laws have been used.”

Speaking on the House floor on Wednesday, Owens ripped the Biden administration’s support of bills that would expand background checks and make private sales of guns more difficult. Speaking of gun rights, he stated:

These rights protect my life, liberty and property, were granted to me by God, and cannot be taken away from me by D.C. bureaucrats. I grew up in the Deep South at a time when black Americans were unable to defend themselves. After the Civil War, black codes and Jim Crow laws prevented prohibited people of color from owning firearms. In the mid-1950’s Martin Luther King Jr. carried firearms for self-protection but his application for concealed weapon permit was denied because of racist gun control laws in his state.

As a child, my dad witnessed an altercation between his father and a southern white man who thought my grandfather was being disrespectful and threatened to teach him a lesson. Later that night he drove up to my grandfather’s home with a bunch of his friends, standing on the floor-runner of a Model-T Ford. My grandfather was prepared; he and his brothers had hidden around his front porch. As these bullies and cowards approached the house, they heard the click of rifles and left as fast as they came. Without firing his gun on another human being, my grandfather’s right to own a firearm ensured his rights to protect his life, liberty and property.

After a critic slammed Owens, remarking, “The NRA wasn’t on your side then and surely isn’t now. Systemic racism is real and you will never get in the rich while guys club,” Owens fired back. “Racism in the old days hid behind white hoods. Now it hides behind fake profile pictures and fake names on Twitter espousing ‘woke’ ideals.”

Last July, after it was reported that the NFL would play “Lift Ev’ry Voice And Sing,” dubbed the “Black National Anthem,” before all Week 1 games in the 2020 season,   Owens, who starred in the NFL, commented, “There is no ‘black national anthem.’ Why does it feel like the country is trying to segregate again sometimes?”

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