State Media

Obviously, I try not to watch a lot of Fox, but when you distill the worst down into a few succinct clips, just wow.  This clip of the breathtaking and audacious hypocrisy is not surprising, but still somehow stunning.

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In case you were wondering what I thought about guns

Okay, kidding.  You know since you are here.  That said, a Danish reporter I’ll be speaking with later this week shared this interview I gave with the NCSU newspaper back in the Fall.  I remember doing it, but like most things, I never actually read it.  I did so yesterday, and I do quite like it.  So, here’s a couple of the parts I really like:

Do you think the United States can take a cue from countries like Japan and Australia, who have enacted change after mass shootings? Do you think there is a chance of a change in gun laws happening in the next ten years?

No. Twenty years, no. And I just read a great article about the evolution of Americans’ thinking on the NRA and the Second Amendment. This was a decades-long campaign from the NRA and the gun lobby to convince people that you very much have this individual right to gun ownership, and that gun ownership is essential to protecting yourself. That was a decades-long campaign that has gradually, but effectively, moved public opinion. American public opinion on guns has shifted. So it’s not just what the NRA believes; this is what a lot of people believe. I think it’s entirely possible, especially if we keep seeing more and more things like Las Vegas, and with a concerted effort, that we can see that shift back towards something more like Australia … I think there’s a possibility for a decades-long campaign that shifts that back to what I would consider, more rational gun policy. And I would say rational based off of empirical evidence and studying the world… the empirical evidence is really clear. If you own a gun in your home, you are much more likely to be injured from a gun in some way than if you don’t have a gun in your home. That said, most people think and feel they are safer if they have a gun in their home. But they’re not. But it doesn’t matter what the reality is, it matters what people think and feel. And right now, people think and feel they’re safer, even when they’re not.

Do you think the Second Amendment is necessary? Or outdated?

Realistically and rationally, when one looks at gun policies around the developed world, it is breathtakingly clear that the Second Amendment is not necessary. The Second Amendment is currently interpreted as an individual right. There are societies, that by many metrics, that are more free than America, that have incredibly restrictive gun legislation. To argue as many do that the right to own a gun is essential to freedom in democracy is demonstrably false. In that sense, it’s clearly not necessary. And then, is it outdated? In that sense, it is demonstrably outdated. This is based on a political context of late 18th-century America, and again, even then, if one looks at the historical context, and many would argue the meaning of the Second Amendment is a well-regulated militia being necessary for the security of a free state, I think you could make a reasonable argument, that seeing it as the collective right, isn’t necessarily outdated. Not even a reasonable one, I would say an unreasonable one. Again, I would say almost the entire rest of the modern free world proves that the Second Amendment is unnecessary and outdated.

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