NBC is kicking off a week-long series of reports about firearms-related violence with Monday’s edition of the “NBC Nightly News,” and it is not likely the firearms community is going to like what they see as reporters zero in on what it calls “gun deaths.”
This column has already viewed the first two segments. The first installment focuses on the crime problem in New Orleans and how police are dealing with it. The second report looks at one weekend during which several people were killed.
The series coincides with Tuesday evening’s State of the Union address by President Barack Obama. Some pundits believe he will devote part of his speech to firearms and gun control proposals. The NBC reports, which will be carried on the TODAY program, and on MSNBC, CNBC, NBCNews.com and social media platforms with the hashtag #GunsInUSA, also might add some momentum to this week’s hearings on gun control measures in Olympia. This column discussed those hearings.
The first segment includes remarks from New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landreau, who contends that the focus of the “gun conversation” currently going on in Congress is “absolutely too narrow and too simplistic.”
While Congress and the White House appear to have their sights set on banning so-called “assault rifles” and their standard issue magazines, Landreau notes, “(It’s) as though if you just ban assault weapons somehow the murder rate in this country is going to go down automatically; it will not.”
Even NBC reporter Ron Allen, in the second segment, acknowledges, “While much of the national debate is about banning ‘high capacity assault weapons,’ just about every case we found involved a handgun.”
Many will look at the NBC series as one more tactic in the Left’s war on guns, in which the firearms community believes NBC is deeply involved and seriously biased.
At the local level this battle has anti-gun Mayor Mike McGinn vowing to prosecute anyone who shows up at the next gun “buyback” offering money to waiting citizens for their unwanted firearms. He was infuriated at the first event last month, held in a parking lot underneath I-5, because it attracted several gun rights activists who paid good money for several of the firearms.
In Olympia, citizens are expected to turn out in big numbers to oppose two measures up for hearings. In particular, they are wary of House Bill 1588, which appears to open the door to a de facto gun registry in the guise of a “universal background check.”
The Seattle Times, meanwhile, ran a piece over the weekend about the legal carrying of firearms inside the Capitol building. It focused on State Rep. David Taylor from Moxee in Yakima County. He’s a two-term Republican for whom packing a firearm is a habit.
According to the Times, Taylor is no fan of HB 1588, sponsored by anti-gun Democrat Jamie Pedersen of Seattle. Wednesday morning will likely demonstrate that he has lots of company.