In case you missed it, there’s a small newspaper in upstate New York that published the names and locations of gun owners in its vicinity. The result has been a nearly non-stop vilification by Fox News. Now, as the paper faces the predictable threats as a result, Fox is vilifying the paper for hiring armed guards, as if that were some kind of unwarranted act of hypocrisy.
Megyn Kelly was a vision of scripted right-wing outrage yesterday on America Live. Apparently, she thought the paper’s employees should just grin and bear it. Or, maybe grin and get killed. She said in her introduction, “The paper has now hired ARMED GUARDS to protect THEM, the paper, in the face of the public backlash after they attempted to publicly shame law-abiding gun owners in the aftermath of the Newtown tragedy.”
Well, not quite, Meggy. Somehow, you got completely wrong the actual reason for the paper’s decision. It was not to shame anyone but to drive home the point that your neighbor could have a stash of weapons without your knowing about it. After a local gun shooting crime shocked the community, the shooters neighbors were shocked to learn about his cache.
“I think that the access to guns in this country is ridiculous, that anybody can get one,” said a neighbor of Wilson’s who requested anonymity because it’s not known whether the gunman, whose unnamed victim survived, will return home or be sent to prison. “Would I have bought this house knowing somebody (close by) had an arsenal of weapons? No, I would not have.”
In the wake of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and amid renewed nationwide calls for stronger gun control, some Lower Hudson Valley residents would like lawmakers to expand the amount of information the public can find out about gun owners. About 44,000 people in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam — one out of every 23 adults — are licensed to own a handgun.
In other words, some of the paper’s readership want that information – which, by the way, was obtained from public records.
For more “fair and balanced” commentary, Kelly trotted out Republican New York State representative Greg Ball. She said by way of opening the interview, “Now they (the paper) went after the people in Westchester County, now they’re going after the people in Putnam County, New York. And the Clerk in Putnam County has said, ‘No. You’re not getting it!’”
Ball got the message and he wasted no time in getting to inflaming the issue which – predictably – did not stop with the paper and spilled over to other permanent Fox News target: the left and anyone or anything with a different point of view:
At some point, as elected officials, we have to say enough is enough. This Journal News editorial board is packed with eggheads to the left of left. The worst of the worst.
Kelly’s show airs during what Fox insists is its “objective” news lineup. But do you think she challenged this outrageous rhetoric? Of course not. She went along with Ball’s outrage. She said, “Think about the domestic violence victim who does not have a gun,” Kelly mused. She never gave a thought to the law-abiding citizen who might do something entirely innocent that got misinterpreted as a threat. I all but expected her to put her arms around Ball and give him a smooch of appreciation.
For the record, I don’t think the Journal did the right thing by publishing the names and addresses. But it hardly merits the kind of daily attacks from Fox News. And, by the way, this is the same Fox News whose incendiary attacks on Dr. George Tiller, an abortion provider, preceded his assassination. So they are hardly in a position to be whining about responsible journalism.
But speaking of abortion, apropos of absolutely nothing related to this story, Kelly further played the conservative victim by “wondering” what the reaction would have been if the paper had decided to “sit outside a Planned Parenthood on the days that abortions are offered and just followed any woman… and then publish her home address” or “sat outside of stores that sell pornography and followed the men and women home” or published the names of Muslims in New York City.
Of course, none of those examples bore the faintest similarity to what the Journal did, as Kelly, an attorney, almost surely knows. But speaking of publishing home addresses, where was her outrage over the publication of the Journal's staff home addresses? Nowhere to be seen.
Really, she’s the one who should be ashamed of her own role in destroying journalism instead of pointing fingers at anyone else.
For the record, the comment was not really threatening, in my view. But I have a policy of zero tolerance. However, I or another moderator do sometimes miss things and I can’t always get to comments as quickly as I’d like. So that’s another advantage to flagging instead of whining.
If you want to come here and debate civilly, fine. But if you are just here to call us names and throw flames, you’d better move along.
This will be my last warning to you. If you keep on insulting us with ridiculous accusations, I will ban you without further notice.