In what has become a recurring theme on MSNBC, liberal panelists will find some way of attacking Republicans for a completely unrelated issue. The latest example is the tragic murder-suicide involving NFL player Javon Belcher last week, which MSNBC’s Karen Finney used to smear Republicans in Congress, not over gun control -- that would be too predictable -- but, you guessed it, the "war on women."
Appearing on Friday’s Martin Bashir, Finney -- a NARAL Pro-Choice America board member who's fine with violence against unborn girls -- and the entire liberal panel slammed Republicans in the House for failure to pass the Violence Against Women Act, arguing that passage of that bill could have prevented Jovan Belcher from murdering his girlfriend. [See video below page break.]
After Ms. Finney discussed the importance of focusing more on domestic violence issues rather than simply focusing on gun control, Mr. Bashir began the attack on the GOP by asking:
Now, in the light of what Karen just said and what's happened this week, can you explain why Republicans would oppose the passage?
This leading statement allowed fellow MSNBCer Toure to rehash a nearly 20-year old study that has been criticized as flawed by gun rights advocates.
Guns escalate anger and escalate situations. They are the most efficient killing machines we have. Yes, there are other things that we use to kill, but Bob Costas and for once Jason Whitlock was absolutely right to say that allowing this gun culture is problematic for all of us. When you have a gun, you are more likely to get shot. You're not more likely to shoot an intruder.
Ms. Finney then asserted that:
Let's not disconnect that from this issue of domestic violence and assault on women and the republicans in congress who essentially are sending a message that says its okay to beat up certain kinds of women. Native American women, women who are in this country illegally. They don't like some of the particulars in this legislation that actually addresses real problems. Toure, as I have heard you talk about this earlier this week, I agree with the gun control piece, but I think we do a disservice to our culture and our society when we don't see that all of this is connected.
The panel on Martin Bashir oversimplified Republicans’ objections to the updated Violence Against Women Act, and irresponsibly assuming that the Belcher tragedy should immediately result in passage of the bill. But hastily passing a bill because it makes you feel good isn't responsible public policy.
What's more, the presumption by the panel is the classic, anti-feminist thinking of the Left: the answer isn't arming women with guns to defend themselves, it's throwing more money at the problem at the federal level. Growing government won't necessarily stop women from being battered, abused, and killed by their boyfriends or husbands. Empowering women to use lethal force to stop boyfriends or husbands who walk right through restraining orders will. MSNBC's token conservative S.E. Cupp would make that point, if she were ever allowed on a panel on the network outside her daily appearance as co-host of The Cycle.
See relevant transcript below.
December 7, 2012
4:34 p.m. EDT
MARTIN BASHIR: Karen [Finney], if we can switch topics now, this week former Bush spokeswoman Dana Perino told a Fox News panel that women should, and I'm quoting her; make better choices to avoid being victims of domestic violence. On Thursday with the same panel she limited her discussion to just talking about domestic violence. What did you think when you heard those comments?
KAREN FINNEY: Well, a couple of thoughts. Obviously, I do not in any way shape, or form blame women, but the piece that I thought was interesting was that the panel itself kind of moved on from what was I think an important point that she was making and then I think actually I heard S.E. [Cupp] make some of the same points earlier this week on The Cycle. We went right to the gun control issue and I think there are very serious issues about women and domestic violence. You’ve got the Violence Against Women Act, reauthorization sitting right now in Congress. I mean recognizing that this is a serious issue. And I guess I would have a slightly different take on what she was saying, and that is I would like to see us find more ways to empower young women. We know that domestic violence among young couples, young women, in high school even ages is going up, to make better choices. To recognize bad patterns of behavior from the men that they're involved with or the women they're involved with frankly because this isn't just a heterosexual problem.
BASHIR: Of course.
FINNEY: To be able to make better decisions and say, you know what, this behavior is dangerous and I need to love myself enough to walk away from this. I would like to see us be able to empower women to make those kinds of choices.
BASHIR: Toure, there's a law waiting, as Karen mentions, it’s called the Violence Against Women Act. For decades it's been not a controversial issue. It's passed, the Senate passed it again, but Republicans in the House refuse to pass it. Now, in the light of what Karen just said and what's happened this week, can you explain why Republicans would oppose the passage?
TOURE: Well, I mean, first of all, I'm glad to see that unlike yourself, Karen Finney is out watching MSNBC's The Cycle which airs at 3:00 every day on this network.
BASHIR: Your contribution has now ended. Michelle, no sorry, I warned you before so that's it. You're going to come here and self-promote, it's finished, Michelle, let me put the question to you, how do Republicans in the House justify in a week like this not passing the Violence Against Women Act?
MICHELLE COTTLE: You know, there are always ways that they can wiggle out of this thing. There are aspects of it they don't like. They don't like it applying to this group or that group or same-sex couples or just all kinds of ways that they can say we're not really against violence against women but in this particular case it's the details they don't like. So that's how they justify it but I think as a pr matter it's tougher.
BASHIR: Okay. I'm going to allow you to come in again Toure, but if you do speak about The Cycle you will be removed.
TOURE: About what?
BASHIR: This Fox segment that we mentioned earlier also discussed the issue of guns. The majority seems to think, yes, we need more guns, but aren't we seeing women and minorities paying the price for gun culture?
TOURE: Yes, absolutely. The gun control discussion argument meme in America has been completely defeated and to suggest we need to ban handguns or move away from the massive amounts of guns we have in this country is to sound like a loon, a crazy person, but surely more guns is not the answer in the current place where we are, where schools, theaters, family, homes get shot up all the time. We cannot continue to live in this situation, and, you know, without violating your rules, I had to live through somebody saying that it was not the gun that hurt Jovan Belcher's girlfriend but it was domestic violence. Guns escalate anger and escalate situations. They are the most efficient killing machines we have. Yes, there are other things that we use to kill, but Bob Costas and for once Jason Whitlock was absolutely right to say that allowing this gun culture is problematic for all of us. When you have a gun, you are more likely to get shot. You're not more likely to shoot an intruder. And how many of these instances do we have to live through before we say enough. I'm going to let you get in, Karen, but every time we have this big sort of thing happen like Aurora or Jovan belcher, whatever.
BASHIR: Virginia Tech.
TOURE: We could go on and on. We say now is not the time. That is the gun rights group saying let's tamp this down because this is our worst moment, this is our worst fear of the irresponsible gun owner using it in the wrong way. That is exactly the time to say we must do something.
BASHIR: Okay. Karen?
FINNEY: I would just say it is, and that is true, but let's not disconnect that from this issue of domestic violence and assault on women and the republicans in congress who essentially are sending a message that says its okay to beat up certain kinds of women. Native American women, women who are in this country illegally. They don't like some of the particulars in this legislation that actually addresses real problems. Toure, as I have heard you talk about this earlier this week, I agree with the gun control piece, but I think we do a disservice to our culture and our society when we don't see that all of this is connected.
BASHIR: Michelle [Cottle], you have the last word.
COTTLE: Well, I think whatever people are talking about with the gun culture here; you're going to have a hard sell getting anybody to talk about this in the political sphere. You can't get Democratic politicians out there during the campaign. Nobody was rushing to talk about this. It is still fairly toxic.