A Black gay man who is an Austin business owner is running for the Texas legislature on an extreme gun rights platform.
Michael Cargill is a gun store owner and has been described as running on a "pro-life and gun rights platform," reports the Dallas Voice. Cargill is running in the November 5 special election to replace former Democratic State Rep. Mark Strama
A vocal gun rights activist, Cargill said upholding the Second Amendment, along with being pro-life and his belief that retiring military should get better mental health treatment, made him pursue public office. He said he focuses on women and the LGBT community when he teaches concealed handgun classes. "People forget it’s not about school shootings," he said. "It’s about sexual assaults and gay-bashings."
Asked about if he could be influential on GOP lawmakers to help them support LGBT issues, he said he doesn’t want that label to define him. "I don’t like the label. I like to get things done," he said. "I want to accomplish a lot."
However, he said he benefits from being on his longtime partner’s health insurance plan and he supports other companies adding domestic partner benefits. So, on issues of insurance, discrimination and same-sex marriage, he does think he could be an influence if elected because other Republicans will "have to deal with me," he said.
This is not Cargill's first attempt at elected office. Cargill ran for Travis County Constable as a Democrat in 2012. Cargill was described as a "far right extremist on handguns" and "one of the chief voices lobbying for passage of the 'guns in classrooms' bills," by the Burnt Orange Report, the progressive Texas political blog.
These bills were about opening a new market for firearms sales and concealed handgun licensing classes - and Mr. Cargill was one of those who stood to gain a great deal from that market. You see, Mr. Cargill earns his living at least in part by running CHL Class Austin, which - among other things - markets CHL classes to college students  .
TThe Twitter feed for Mr. Cargill's business - which may also be his personal feed - offers some additional hints about his beliefs. It seems that Mike Cargill not only supports guns in classrooms, but also guns in bars.
Of course. Because allowing concealed weapons in bars and gun-toting teachers would decrease crime. SMH.
Cargill is one of at least four openly LGBT candidates running for the Texas lege, reports Austinist. Perhaps not-so-coincidentally, the other gay Republican, George Clayton, the outed former member of the State Board of Education, has also admitted he is gay but "doesn't like labels."
The far-right Black gay Republican Cargill's candidacy is considered a long-shot in progressive Austin.