During Wayne LaPierre's appearance on the Sunday morning edition of NBC's Meet the Press, the executive vice president of the National Rifle Association told host David Gregory that the tragic shooting at the Navy Yards on Monday, September 16, actually reinforced his pro-gun stance. He stated: “When the good guys with guns got there, [the shooting] stopped.”
On Monday morning, Carol Costello -- anchor of the weekday CNN Newsroom program -- referred to the NRA representative's remarks by asserting: “We’ve seen this sad movie before, with Mr. LaPierre;” and grumbled: “At the end of the day, nothing will change.”
The host's comments were made after a segment by reporter Pamela Brown that chronicled the events on Sunday regarding the newly rejuvenated debate over gun control that began in the morning with Gregory's interview of LaPierre.
Not surprisingly, the NBC anchor said armed guards were located on the perimeter of the complex and asked if that undermined the NRA executive's claim that good guys with guns are the best way to stop bad guys with guns.
LaPierre sharply answered "No" and continued:
The whole country ... knows what the problem is -- there weren't enough good guys with guns. When the good guys with guns got there, it stopped.
As a result, the NRA is "calling for layers of security around our military bases. We need to look at letting the men and women that know firearms and are trained in them do what they do best, which is protect and survive.”
Gregory then accused LaPierre of having a "sliding scale" for what's needed depending on what happens in each incident, but the guest replied that his national organization “is not focused on armed guards alone or armed military personnel or armed teachers alone.”
How could anyone look at what happened this week and say there was enough security [at the Navy Yard]? There was one guy ... with a private security firm, [and] there were six others there that were guarding the gates. The Capital Hill SWAT team was told to stand down. Where's the outrage about that? [And] the radios didn't work.
“We’re going to have this discussion today; it’s on other channels,” the gun-rights activist concluded. “When the camera goes off, nobody’s going to do anything.”
Watch the video at Mediaite.
Hours later and in a vastly different setting, Brown said, president Barack Obama gave a 20-minute “passionate eulogy” for the victims of last week's tragedy in what the reporter referred to as “almost a tennis match of point/counterpoint.”
The CNN reporter tried to elicit sympathy for Obama by stating that he was “once again grieving with Americans after four other major mass shootings during his presidency: in Fort Hood, Texas; Tuscon, Arizona; Aurora, Colorado; and in Newton, Connecticut last December.”
While speaking at the memorial service held at the Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C., Obama agreed with LaPierre:
After the round-of-clock coverage on cable news, after the heartbreaking interviews with families, after all the speeches and all the punditry and all the commentary, nothing happens.
“I do not accept that we cannot find a common-sense way to preserve our traditions, including our basic Second Amendment freedoms and the rights of law-abiding gun owners, while at the same time reducing the gun violence that unleashes so much mayhem on a regular basis,” the president said.
“Our tears are not enough,” he added. “Our words and our prayers are not enough. If we really want to honor these 12 men and women, if we really want to be a country where we can go to work, and go to school, and walk our streets free from senseless violence, without so many lives being stolen by a bullet from a gun, then we’re going to have to change.”
“Carol, the president also said we’re not going to see change in the next few weeks, the next few months, but he says there will be change once Americans have had enough,” Brown told Costello.
As Newsbusters previously reported, this isn't the first time a morning news show host has attacked people who support gun rights.
On January 16, Bob Schieffer, host of CBS's Face the Nation program, compared Obama taking on the “gun lobby” to the hunt for Osama bin Laden and “defeating the Nazis.”
It never ceases to amaze me how liberal reporters avoid holding Obama and his administration, as well as former colleague and current Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel, even barely responsible for the high number of gun deaths taking place across the country. Would they be as “gunshy” if a Republican was in the White House?