I meant to write a long Blog entry about yesterday’s atrocity, and the subsequent media coverage, but I have to make a six-hour drive down to West Virginia tonight and bring my 86-year old Grandma back to visit for the holidays, so these brief musings I posted via social media will have to suffice.
What I said on Twitter: “Instead of reporting the news this morning, MSNBC and FOX are simply arguing Left & Right talking points, while CNN’s anchors report only how the story personally impacts them and despicably interviews little kids who survived the shooting.
This country faces major problems. Unfortunately, CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC are a big part of the problems. We need to have NON-PARTISAN, factual discussions. As a nation, we SHOULD be discussing guns, mental health issues, national debt, etc. But simply echoing what you heard from Limbaugh, Maddow, Hannity, Hayes, Morgan, etc is NOT a discussion.”
And what I said on my friend and fellow author Mark Morris’s Facebook page: “Roughly two years ago, someone tried to break into my home late at night. I live in a rural area, and it would have taken police a minimum of 10-15 minutes to respond. I warned the intruder that I was armed with a .357 revolver, and then displayed it. Upon seeing this, the intruder fled. I do not know what would have happened had I not had that means of defense, nor do I want to know. As a father, and a public figure, I have a right to defend my loved ones and myself. I am responsible. My firearms (as well as anything else I don’t want my toddler getting his hands on such as fireworks) are locked in a steel safe that requires both a numerical code and a key to get into. And yes, while that added a delay on the night I *needed* that firearm, you might also be surprised just how quickly I got that safe open and that revolver loaded.
Now, that being that, you’ll notice I said .357 revolver. I didn’t say Bushmaster .223 semi-automatic rifle (one of the guns used in yesterday’s school shooting). I don’t need a semi-automatic to defend my home and I don’t need it to go deer hunting. Nobody does. We have the right to defend our homes, our property, and most importantly, our loved ones. But we don’t need assault weapons to do that. A shotgun or a revolver in the hands of someone who has taught themselves to be safely proficient with it is just as effective at home defense as any automatic or semi-automatic weapon. Nor do we need assault weapons to defend ourselves from a tyrannical government (something else that is often trotted out). An assault weapon is not going to increase your odds against a drone.
There needs to be a factual, fair, NON-PARTISAN, and candid discussion about guns, gun culture, and gun violence in this country. Sadly, MSNBC, FOX News, CNN, talk radio pundits, lobbying groups, and politicians will not allow the American people to have that discussion, seeking instead to politicize it for their own gain. We are a nation that have regressed to rooting for political parties the way we would for football teams, forgoing logic and self-education, content instead to simply parrot the Left and Right talking points instead.
And until that stops, these atrocities will sadly continue to happen. And that is the most horrific and heartbreaking part of all.“
(And again, I’ll be spending over 12 hours driving this weekend, so if your comment doesn’t appear immediately, it doesn’t mean I’m censoring you. It just means I’m not near a computer, and am instead enjoying my road trip with Grandma).