By now, many of you reading this have already heard much opinion pro and con regarding NBC sportscaster Bob Costas’ anti-Second Amendment remarks during last Sunday night’s football game.
But just in case you missed it, Costas (using sportswriter Jason Whitlock’s column as a human shield) said: “If Jovan Belcher didn’t possess a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.” If Costas were really serious about having a conversation about our culture of death and truly did his homework on the issue, rather than rushing to politicize a tragedy, he could’ve looked very close to home to find out just how silly this entire argument is.
As a witness to the contrary, I present Nicole Brown Simpson, who clearly disagrees with Costas. At least she would if she could. Unfortunately, she’s been dead for almost 20 years now because of the crazed NFL player in her life, who was also her former husband and the father of her children. He was also a former close colleague of Costas at NBC.
Most of you know him as O.J.
If Nicole Brown Simpson were here today, she could testify that the gun that former Kansas City Chief Jovon Belcher used to commit murder-suicide recently isn’t any guiltier of a crime than is the knife O.J. used to stab her to death. Both are inanimate, morally-neutral tools. Thus, they’re each only as dangerous or useful as the person wielding them.
The same could be said of rope.
See, Eric Eucker is the tragic death in the NFL you probably haven’t heard about for two reasons. One, he was a Cleveland Browns’ groundskeeper and not a starting player for an NFL team as Belcher was. Two, he committed suicide at Browns’ headquarters by hanging himself on the same day of Belcher’s apparent murder-suicide.
The way Eucker chose to take his own life doesn’t fit the preferred narrative of Costas and others who think they know better than our Founding Fathers, who gave us a Second Amendment as both a check and balance against government tyranny and also as a means of self-defense.
But don’t just take my word for it. Costas’ NBC co-worker Ice-T said recently that the right to keep and bear arms was “the last form of defense against tyranny.”
Gun control isn’t a check on what’s wrong with the human condition any more than rope control would’ve saved Eucker’s life or knife control would’ve saved Nicole Brown Simpson’s. When someone is hell-bent, literally, on doing harm to himself and/or others, he will find a means to do so. At that point, rules and regulations aren’t a deterrent, which is why we all have a God-given right to self defense.
For example, alleged Colorado movie theater shooter James Holmes disregarded multiple laws and prohibitions against firearms when he shot those people in cold blood back in July. Researcher John R. Lott notes that almost every single shooting involving multiple victims in the last 50 years of American history took place in a location where firearms were already prohibited.
I’m guessing Jay Rodney Lewis, from my home state of Iowa, is glad he has a God-given right to self defense. Lewis wrongly went to jail for 112 days before a jury of his peers acquitted him on the grounds of self defense when he used his gun to defend himself against two attackers. While defending himself against these charges, which would’ve made him a hero in a more sane age, Lewis lost everything and was living in his car until a local church came to his aid.
Lewis’ story is similar to that of former Auto Zone employee Devin McLean, who ought to be an American hero but instead is just another unemployed American worker during the Obama years.
McLean and his store manager were about to close the AutoZone in York County, Va. when a gunman barged into the store. McLean, a 23-year-old Air Force veteran, escaped through the side door to run to his truck for his weapon to make it a fair fight. When he returned, he pointed his gun directly at the armed robber.
“I told him to freeze and to drop his weapon,” McLean told Fox News, noting that the would-be perp took off instead. “I watched him run down the street. I came back inside and made sure my manager was okay, and he called the police.”
Police believe this is the same criminal responsible for as many as 30 robberies in the area. Sheriff J.D. Diggs considers McLean to be a hero.
“He did a very brave thing,” the sheriff said. “He put himself in jeopardy in an attempt to make sure his friend was safe. He did a very brave thing.”
Two days after the attempted robbery, Auto Zone fired McLean for violating its no firearms policy. Regardless, I’m guessing McLean’s manager, who credited McLean with saving his life, is eternally grateful that McLean put the Second Amendment ahead of his company’s flawed policy.
What these sorts of tragedies, or near tragedies, really speak to isn’t the need for more restrictions on liberty, but an American culture growing increasingly dark, morally and spiritually. A culture where the gory equivalent to pornography is celebrated in our movies, assassins and mob hitmen are the heroes in our video games, and we kill 4,000 of our own children every day.
Until Costas and his ilk start speaking to those deeper issues, and not just politicizing the death of others when it’s expedient to do so, they shouldn’t be taken seriously. The last thing a culture of death needs is the further exploiting of the loss of life.
(You can learn more about Steve Deace’s nationally-syndicated radio program by visiting www.stevedeace.com, or follow him on Twitter @SteveDeaceShow)
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