By: Peter Suciu
Gun control advocates often use unnecessary hyperbole to push their agenda. That was certainly the case on Sunday when CNN’s Jim Acosta agreed with author Kurt Andersen that Republicans who don’t support gun control are effectively conducting mass human sacrifice.
What is especially notable, however, about the exchange between CNN’s chief domestic correspondent and Andersen is that the primary discussion was focused on Covid-19 vaccines.
“You write that the right’s ongoing propaganda campaign and organized political resistance to vaccination, among other health protocols has been for no reasonably, ethically justifiable social purpose,” Acosta said.
Andersen then pivoted the conversation a bit stating, “Perhaps, this revival of mass human sacrifice in the United States is just a passing thing that will go away but … on the other hand, the Republicans have, for years now, been doing a different kind of what is effectively mass human sacrifice in terms of gun deaths and eliminating all gun regulation.”
One could question how Andersen is an expert voice on either topic. Educated at Harvard, he edited the Harvard Lampoon, and while it may be well respected, it isn’t exactly a hard news magazine. Andersen went on to co-found Spy magazine and was also an architecture and design critic for Time. Even as his CV includes editing The New Yorker and authoring several books, it wouldn’t seem that Andersen is a health expert, nor someone who has covered firearm legislation in great length.
Yet, to many in the mainstream media, any high-profile critic of firearms is often touted as an expert, and just as often when those individuals can’t back up their respective opinion they fall onto the tired line that the GOP is somehow responsible for gun violence.
It was last April that the liberal website CommonDreams.org ran an op-ed from Thom Hartman, a talk-show host and author of several books on business including The Hidden History of Monopolies: How Big Business Destroyed the American Dream, who offered, “The GOP Has Blood On their Hands.”
As with others, Hartman took aim at Republican lawmakers for their refusal to act, and cited the increase in gun violence. Among the choice paragraphs, “President Biden and the Democrats just proposed legislation that would limit gun magazines to no more than 10 rounds; Republicans are outraged.”
Hartman later concluded the GOP should be called out as “a death cult committed to violence, bigotry, and the destruction of our planet.”
The narrative has been repeated by liberals for years: Republicans’ failure to institute gun control laws is why we have mass shootings and why there is violence in major cities. It is easy to make that conclusion, yet it fails to address some simple facts.
Criminals are not generally buying their guns legally, and as criminals are by definition breaking the law, rarely do they follow the laws regarding gun ownership. Case in point: Consider the tragic killing of a rookie NYPD Officer Jason Rivera in New York City just last month. The shooter, Lashawn McNeil, was armed with a stolen Glock 43 pistol equipped with a 50-round magazine – the gun was illegally owned and the magazine is banned in New York City. No amount of legislation would have stopped McNeil.
Likewise, the Taurus G2C pistol used by Maisal Faisal Akram, the 44-year-old British citizen who took four individuals hostage at a Texas synagogue, bought that weapon from a convicted felon, who also obtained the gun illegally and would not be able to legally purchase the firearm.
In addition, four individuals were arrested in California for trafficking firearms from Arizona to California. When they were arrested, they were found with 15 firearms and thousands of rounds of ammunition, an illegal suppressor attachment, an automatic pistol, high-capacity magazines and a 3D printer – which was believed to be used to illegally produce firearm parts.
Supporters of gun control would argue that tougher laws on the ownership of firearms are now required; however, these recent arrests could serve as a warning that criminals will always find a way to acquire firearms illegally.
As criminals become more brazen, the warning is that Democrats and liberals will increase efforts to pass laws that will only impact law-abiding citizens. Then perhaps we’ll see who truly has blood on their hands.
Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He regularly writes about military small arms, and is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com.