The New York Times published a jeremiad Saturday about former Guns and Ammo writer Dick Metcalf, whose "Let's Talk Limits" article published in December is the reason for the "former" in his Guns and Ammo employment status. The NY Times article is titled "Banished for Questioning the Gospel of Guns," and portrays Metcalf as a victim of not just "Second Amendment absolutism" (as if "Second Amendment relativism" is appropriate in advocacy of that which shall not be infringed), but of gun industry money suppressing the expression of his views.
Just days after the column appeared, Mr. Metcalf said, his editor called to tell him that two major gun manufacturers had said “in no uncertain terms” that they could no longer do business with InterMedia Outdoors, the company that publishes Guns & Ammo and co-produces his TV show, if he continued to work there. He was let go immediately.
Those manufacturers were entirely within their rights in taking that position, being under no obligation to support with their advertising dollars a publication advocating a position entirely anathema to the beliefs of their customer base. It would also be difficult to dispute the fact that their self-interest was served by their ultimatum--not, contrary to the anti-gun zealots' contention that "squelching the debate" about more draconian gun laws is part of a cynical plot to protect gun industry profits--but because angry readers of Guns and Ammo had already threatened to boycott any company that continued to associate with any publication that continued to associate with Metcalf.
The NY Times then quotes Metcalf at his self-pitying, "victim card"-playing best:
“I’ve been vanished, disappeared,” Mr. Metcalf, 67, said in an interview last month on his gun range here, about 100 miles north of St. Louis, surrounded by snow-blanketed fields and towering grain elevators. “Now you see him. Now you don’t.”
Yep--he went there. He compares losing his job as a writer, after writing a piece that deeply offended the vast majority of his target audience, to being snatched by the KGB, tortured and executed in the Lubyanka Building, and disposed of without explanation, or even acknowledgement to family and friends.
The NY Times clearly has no objection to the grandiose scale of Metcalf's persecution complex, although the author favors images of dogmatic religion, rather than totalitarian government:
Moderate voices that might broaden the discussion from within are silenced. When writers stray from the party line promoting an absolutist view of an unfettered right to bear arms, their publications — often under pressure from advertisers — excommunicate them.
Even a Guns and Ammo former editor who appears to have no objection to Metcalf's dismissal offers what is at best a rather backhanded defense of those of us unwilling to retreat one more inch from our Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms:
The time for ceding some rational points is gone.
So says former G&A editor Richard Venola, as if there are any "rational points" for us to cede. As if it's "irrational" to refuse to ask permission to exercise a fundamental human right.
Metcalf, by the way, calls himself a "Second Amendment fundamentalist," because he "keeps a .38 snub-nose Smith & Wesson revolver within easy reach." By that standard, U.S. Senator Dianne "Mr. and Mrs. America, Turn 'Em All In" Feinstein (D-CA), who once enjoyed the use of one of the very few, nearly unobtainable, concealed carry permits in San Francisco, is a "Second Amendment absolutist."
Metcalf had every right to state his views as he did last month. Likewise, though, those of us who find those views as reprehensible as those promoted by NAMBLA have every right to let anyone who continues to do business with him know that we will no longer be doing business with them, and they have every right to dissolve that business relationship.
- OughtSix lashes Guns and Ammo for its Zumbo moment.
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- Firing of Guns & Ammo editor highlights inconsistent gun owner reactions
- Metcalf fires back on firing; Angel win helped by gun owners
- Fired Guns & Ammo editor to explain his position on Gun Talk Radio