Media debates showing dead children to push gun control

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File

For many in the media, they will do anything they can to advance their personal political agendas. We’ve seen that plenty over the years and so it doesn’t really surprise any of us anymore.


Or, at least, I didn’t think it would.

However, there’s a proposal that is getting debated by some in the media, one that is beyond infuriating.

Much as I understand and relate to the anger and anguish over last week’s shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, for a number of reasons, I don’t believe we have to look at the mutilated bodies of children to understand that America has a gun crisis that only meaningful gun safety legislation can correct. Yet, that has been the suggestion of some journalists and government officials in recent days in light of the most recent rounds of mass shootings. The theory behind this idea is rooted in the belief that if people and lawmakers could only see what a gun like an AR-15 does to the human body, there could finally be a real shift in how the country tackles gun rights.

Among those calling for this is Temple University’s journalism school dean, David Boardman, who recently made the suggestion via Twitter: “Couldn’t have imagined saying this years ago, but it’s time — with the permission of a surviving parent — to show what a slaughtered 7-year-old looks like. Maybe only then will we find the courage for more than thoughts and prayers.”

Others include John Woodrow Cox, a Washington Post reporter and the author of “Children Under Fire,” who, in an interview with CNN chief media correspondent Brian Stelter, argued that many people don’t understand how bullets from high-powered rifles destroy children’s bodies.

“If they’re going to make that choice and say that anybody should have access to those guns, then they should know the cost,” Cox explained on “Reliable Sources” on Sunday. “They should know the price that children pay in graphic form, and if they can live with that, fine.”


That’s right. They want to show the bodies of dead children to convince you to support gun control.

In other words, there’s literally nothing they won’t stoop to in order to get you to support their preferred policies.

What they don’t get is that we’re not somehow OK with dead children. It’s that we don’t think gun control is going to have any impact in either the frequency or severity of mass shootings, but it will make it harder for ordinary people to defend themselves.

The fact that none of these knobs are willing to listen to us on this is 99 percent of the problem on this issue. They’re so convinced that we actually agree that gun control will work, we just don’t care about solutions that they won’t hear anything else.

Yet I’m going to posit that such a thing will have a very different impact than the one these journalists think.

See, they’re hoping they can create an Emmit Till moment, a moment so shocking that the nation will step up and create change for the better much as how the picture of Emmit Till hanging did.

However, we’re not the same nation these days. While many of us will be disgusted and upset by the imagines, can we guarantee that some sick bastard out there won’t see them and think, “Cool. I want to do that” and become inspired?


If we’re going to deal with arguments that virtual violence somehow spurs real-world violence, then how can we not at least consider that some sick people will see such photographs as something worthy of emulation?

Frankly, that risk alone is too great for such a thing.

But the fact that those who think they have a right to direct public sentiment whichever way they want, such as gun control, are even considering such a thing tells you a lot about who they are.

It’s also why they should never be taken seriously again by anyone.

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