Do you know what football has in common with the Second Amendment? Practically nothing.
However, that didn’t seem to stop sports writer Dennis Dodd from deciding he needed to talk about campus carry. After all, some people who are on campuses play football and stuff. Or something.
In the process, Dodd shows precisely why he has no business talking about gun policy.
Let’s start with the quote he opens up his column with:
Bob Harkins knows a little bit about the mental, social and philosophical impact of carrying a weapon. The University of Texas’ associate vice president, campus safety and security trudged up infamous Hamburger Hill in the bloody 1969 battle that cost 72 American lives during the Vietnam War.
“I spent 27 years in the Army,” Harkins said. “I put a round in the chamber when I was fixing to kill somebody. I didn’t walk around even in a war zone with a round in my chamber.”
First, I’m not quite sure I buy that. He spent 27 years in the Army and did at least one tour in Vietnam, and never walked around with a round in the chamber?
Second, so what? The military isn’t a private citizen exercising his Second Amendment rights and never has been. Further, what does not chambering a round have to do with carrying a firearm on campus, anyway?
What you’re seeing here is a clever trick. Dodd has already presented an expert with a critical quote which sets readers into the mindset of “experts think this is a bad idea.”
However, there’s not even a whiff of a counter point to balance this out. This becomes a problem because there’s nothing to indicate this is an opinion column. In other words, it’s anti-gun opinion masquerading as news.
Here’s another example of just how ridiculous this piece is.
We said it was complicated. Given the tragedies at Columbine, Sandy Hook and Virginia Tech, the question needs to be asked: Why doesn’t every coach in the country ban guns right now?
Yeah! If we hadn’t had campus carry at those schools, those horrible tragedies would never have happened
Oh, that’s right. They were banned. Didn’t seem to help, did it? Maybe because criminals don’t. Obey. Laws?
Here’s another fun quote Dodd decided to include:
“If somebody wants to come shoot me … having a sign on my door that says they’re going to be convicted of trespass if they shoot and kill me in addition to murder probably isn’t much of a deterrent,” said [University of Texas Law Professor Steven] Goode.
If somebody wants to come shoot you, do you think a law they’re not even looking at will be any more of a deterrent?
Dodd’s not comfortable with guns. That much is clear. Coaches and educators who have worked in gun free zones without issue for years are uncomfortable with the new paradigm. That’s also clear.
However, it’s also clear that rather than present the story and let readers decide for themselves, Dodd would rather use his pulpit to indoctrinate.
A bit of unbiased digging would have found that guns actually make people safer. It would have found that the vast majority of mass shootings take place in gun free zones. It would have found that criminals do not obey gun laws and never have.
Instead, he wanted to pontificate on a political topic he was ill qualified to speak on with any authority, then used the cloak of news reporting to pretend it was anything but pontification.