Saturday's Today show on NBC spent almost two minutes highlighting an obituary for a suicide victim in Vermont that is part of an effort to encourage new laws that would require a 24-hour waiting period before purchasing a gun to try to prevent suicides. The report made no time for any dissenting point of view and merely served as a promotion for the gun control proposal.
Co-host Sheinelle Jones set up the segment by recalling that the CDC recently reported that the number of gun-related deaths per year is at the highest level in about 40 years.
Co-host Peter Alexander then added: "This morning, an obituary for a young man who took his own life is going viral, his parents now calling for stricter gun control so that other famlies might be able to avoid the same heartbreak."
Correspondent Tammy Leitner began the report with a soundbite of Alyssa Black, whose son, Andrew, bought a gun and then used it to commit suicide about four hours later. After noting that his obituary tells readers details about his life, Jones then added: "But the obit also included an unusual request -- that friends and family lobby state lawmakers to change the law and require a wait period for firearm purchases 'to provide a cooling off period to guard against impulsive acts of violence.'"
After reiterating the record number of gun-related suicides, Leitner then lamented: "Only nine states and the District of Columbia require a mandatory waiting period to purchase certain firearms. Vermont is not one of them."
Closing out the report came another clip of Alyssa Black pushing the idea: "We are responsible gun owners, but we also think: 'What's the big deal? What is 24 hours?'"
Leitner then underscored: "Twenty-four hours that might have given their son a fighting chance."
Not mentioned was that those contemplating suicide can simply choose a different method as evidenced by the fact that a number of countries, like Japan, have more restrictive gun laws than the U.S., but still have higher suicide rates than the U.S.