News outlets omit fact that organizer of “White Appreciation Day” appears to be a well-known Republican activist

(Political stunt appreciation day! — promoted by Colorado Pols)

Edgar Antillon.

Edgar Antillon.

MONDAY UPDATE: Using info from a ColoradoPols commenter below, I’ve confirmed that the co-owner of a BBQ joint that will give “white Americans” a discount is an active Republican candidate for the Colorado State House.

Edgar Antillon, who’s promoting his restaurant’s “White Appreciation Day,” ran as Republican for House District 32 (Commerce City) last year–and for House District 35 (Westminster) in 2010. He lost both times. His House Distric 32 campaign is active, according to state records.

The story about the discount for white people, originally aired by Denver’s NBC affiliate, has gone viral nationally. But news outlets haven’t reported Antillon’s connection to the Republican Party.

Calls to Antillon’s restaurant, Rubbin Buttz, to find out if his “White Appreciation Day” has the backing of any of Antillon’s Republican colleagues or the Colorado Republican Party were not returned. Neither did Antillon respond to an email seeking comment.

———

Denver’s NBC affiliate, 9News, aired a story Thursday about a BBQ joint in Milliken, Colorado, that’s planning to give “white Americans” a discount later this month. From there, the story has gone viral nationally.

But news outlets failed to report that the co-owner of the restaurant, Edgar Antillon, who’s promoting his restaurant’s “White Appreciation Day,” appears to be the same conservative activist who ran as a Republican for the state legislature (District 35) in 2010, served as the Adams County chair of Mitt Romney’s Hispanic outreach effort, called “Juntos con Romney,” and organized extremist pro-gun events.

Calls to Atillon’s restaurant, Rubbin Buttz, to confirm Antillon’s background were not returned, but photos, as well as a Washington Times piece referencing his gun background, make me think it’s the same guy.

When Antillon made his legislative run in 2010, the progressive blog ColoradoPols drew on reporting from The Denver Post and provided some background on the Republican candidate,:

Antillon pled guilty to perjury after being arrested on two counts of felony impersonation in 2004. Antillon’s record includes fully 18 failure-to-appear counts on numerous mostly minor charges. Antillon told Bartels that family troubles as a youth made it difficult to appear in court, but he apparently has time to maintain a Youtube pseudonymous identity as “Juan a Be the Luchador” where he frequently poses with assault weapons (above). Antillon was personally introduced at the GOP state assembly by Frank McNulty, highlighting Antillon’s race as one they can, uh, win… “

In 2013, Antillon appeared again to organize a “Guns for Everyone” rally at the state Capitol. He and others vowed to pack concealed heat at the event, which turned out to be a bust but managed to capture the media spotlight anyway. Last year, he grabbed attention by advocating that legal marijuana users get gun permits. 

9News reported Antillon’s thoughts on his “White Appreciation Day:”

“We have a whole month for Black History Month,” Antillon said. “We have a whole month for Hispanic Heritage Month, so we thought the least we could do was offer one day to appreciate white Americans.”…

Antillon says the discount isn’t meant to discriminate, but instead bring people together. He added that he has been the target of racism in the past. He hopes opening up the discussion will prompt others to think differently about race.

“We’re all American, whether you came from a different country, or you were born here,” Antillon said. “We’re all American.”

“White Appreciation Day” is meant to bring people together? Looks more like a media stunt from a guy using his conservative-activist background to draw attention to his business. That should have been part of the news stories.

23 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. mamajama55 says:

    Antillon is an active candidate for HD32 in 2016, according to TRACER. And yes, this is the same guy.

    Antillon's restaurant is in Milliken, which is way up here in Steve Humphrey's district, and the district he's running in, HD32, is about 57% Hispanic and 47% Democratic. So, I would guess he has a fair to middling chance of getting elected, unless his extreme pro-gun views are more widely publicized.

    So, although it won’t violate any campaign finance laws, it is not just a stunt for bringing people to his BBQ business – it absolutely is a way to get his name out there in conservative Republican circles for his HD32 run in 2016.

    • FrankUnderwood says:

      I wonder if Dudley will sink any ammo-dollars into this district…..

      BTW, was Nate Marshall there for White Appreciation Day?

      • ElliotFladen says:

        In the past Dudley and Edgar have really not gotten along at all.

        Also, little trivia item on how unusual of a life Edgar leads.  I think I remember (though I could be mistaken) that his wife (and mother of his four (?) children) has decided she is alternative lifestyle.  If I am right, I doubt Dudley would have anything to do with him.

        • mamajama55 says:

          I didn't realize that Dudley Brown had a "straight and narrow" candidate  test, as well as his standard Second Amendment Uber Alles criterion.

          I was surprised to find no trace of RMGO funding in Antillon's campaign finances- considering how much of a gunhead he is. Really, there's hardly any money at all. His campaigns have been mostly self-financed.  He must really want to be a representative, though, because he has kept trying for five years now, although that is not a friendly district for a Republican, even a Hispanic Republican.

          Maybe White People Appreciation Day will be his big breakthrough issue, one way or another. As Chaps could tell you, having widespread name recognition isn't always a good thing. I wouldn't ever vote for Antillon, and apparently the voters of his district feel the same way,  but he is probably a well-meaning, if wrong-headed guy. The right wing blogosphere reaction to his supposed "persecution" is frightening.

           

          • FrankUnderwood says:

            Dudley Brown holds the practitioners of alternative lifestyles (to use Elliott's words) in almost as much disdain as he does those faux ammosexuals like Jon Caldara who would agree to the 30-round clip limit.

            Recall that in 2012 he got caught financing a nasty hit piece on former State Senator Jeanne White which featured a NYC gay couple's engagement photo with the Brooklyn Bridge airbrushed out and the Rockies added in, telling White's constituents that this is where her vote for civil unions (who can remember those?) would lead.

            The sad part (for the RMGO) is that there actually are some ammosexual gay men and lesbians out there who would probably support Dudley's nutty views on the Second Amendment but who are put off by his freelancing on other right wing issues.

            Better to stick to your guns (literally and figuratively) on gun safety/control issues and avoid the other hot button like reproductive choice and gay rights where you're likely to offend true civil libertarian types.

            • Diogenesdemar says:

              Long before Dudley was a liberty loving patriot, he was just another slimy GOPer operative.  Dudley's interest in gun rights, has always been more about right than guns.  Sad what useful idiots the gun toters (or any other group of fools) are on Dudley's behalf — decades of successful NRA fear conditioning, I guess?

        • FrankUnderwood says:

          Elliot, you are so stuck in the 1970's. Alternative lifestyle? Do you mean she is a Sister of Sappho? Or that she came out as a lesbian? (We're allowed to say the "L" word in the 21st century.)

        • BlueCat says:

          Being gay a "lifestyle"?  What planet have you been living on, these past several decades, Eliot?

    • Jason Salzman says:

      really great info. thanks

      • mamajama55 says:

        It was fun digging. I'm guessing that whole "appreciate white people" thing might have gone over like a deflated football if Antillon had tried it in HD32, the 57% Hispanic / 47% Democratic district he's campaigning to represent, which is Arvada, Commerce City, Twin Lakes, and Derby.

        HD32 Dems outperform Rs by 42% at the polls.

        So “whites as misunderstood, unappreciated minority” plays a heckuva lot better in HD48, 75% white, +33% R performance  Milliken,  where Antillon’s BBQ business is.

        District political leanings from Colorado Capitol Watch. Links to individual district demographics also accessible from the CCW page.

         

  2. Big Time says:

    Is this what donations to RMGO pay for – this clown?

    No wonder they are getting their asses kicked every which way but Tuesday.  

  3. Gilpin Guy says:

    A crowdfunding site can't be far off if not already unveiled.  It's grifting for dollars.

  4. mamajama55 says:

    Culture vs. Color

    My beef with Antillon's stunt, whatever it's motivated by, is primarily because he is rewarding people a discount based on the color of their skin. 

    Now if we're celebrating European culture, most whose artists were pale complected, and we have a British writers day, or an Austrian  composers day, I'll be right in there toasting Bill Shakespeare and Amadeus Mozart. I'll do my cheap-drunk thing and down half a stein of beer at Oktoberfest, then dance to accordion music, which sounds just like Mexican ranchera music, because they both come from Eastern European folk dance / Polka tunes.

    American culture is more diverse – if we're celebrating American culture, it can't be just based on skin color…duh…because we are a patchwork of colors and cultures.  I'd be down for celebrating Frederick Douglass and Mother Jones and FDR and Will Rogers and Nina Simone and…you get the idea.

    But cutting people a break based on skin color, or conflating color with culture, is racist and wrong. It's a step backward to the bad old days.

    That is all.

     

     

  5. DaftPunk says:

    If you look at the title of this diary through the transition part of your bifocals, "Republican activist" looks like "racist."

  6. mamajama55 says:

    Edgar Antillon is fair game. He is a politician and a businessman, a public figure. His wife, whatever amalgam of LBGTQ…… she identifies with, should not have be gossipped about unless she chooses to "come out" publicly.

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