I’d love for the media to be neutral. They never really were, of course, but they at least pretended to be, and that’s far better than what we see today.
It bothers me that they’re so blatantly anti-gun.
One place that’s not an issue, in and of itself, is in the op-ed pages of newspapers and websites. People are supposed to voice their opinions, to be biased, there.
But they shouldn’t lie about what they’re presenting, which is what the Atlanta Journal-Constitution just did.
It started with this piece, titled, “Opinion: Without gun reform, more people will die.”
A little alarmist, but it’s an op-ed.
What got me, though, what the subtitle: “A conservative gun owner’s view.”
That’s really alarmist coming from a supposed conservative. Yet the piece starts like this:
My wife was born on a farm in Middle Georgia and was related to half the county. We lived in her hometown for a while when we were first married. Later on, I was chairman of a rural county commission near there. Back when I was a Republican.
Well, in fairness, one can be a conservative and not be a Republican. It’s entirely possible and I’ve known people who described themselves as such.
What follows from there is a list of people from his wife’s family who had somehow managed to shoot themselves–it’s an impressively long list, too. I’m skeptical of its accuracy if only because having been raised hunting and fishing in the exact same state and knowing numerous gun owners here, I’ve never seen as many people who shot themselves as the author found in a single family.
But hey, maybe they’re just a particularly stupid family.
Then we eventually get to this part:
Americans have either been the victim of gun violence or personally knows someone who has. The U.S.A. has an outrageous number of deaths by guns each year. More than any other nation in the civilized world, per capita.
Why do we have about 40,000 gun deaths annually? The answer is very simple. Because we have more guns than other democracies and much looser laws.
Pick a nation. I’m Italian and Jewish. Per CDC data, Italy has 1.13 gun deaths per 100,000 residents; Israel is at 1.38/100,000. The good old U.S.A. runs 12.24 per 100,000, about 10 times as high.
Only a third of Americans per a Monmouth University survey believe gun ownership is an absolute right. Conservatives are always misleading us about guns by saying gun ownership is a right. But that is not what the Second Amendment says. It refers to state militias (i.e., National Guards).
Now, that doesn’t sound conservative at all, does it? Especially since that’s a very progressive, anti-gun reading of the Second Amendment, one the Supreme Court has repeatedly found to be invalid.
Further, we’ve already talked about the problems with violent crime and why gun control won’t make us any safer.
So, I did some digging. Surely the Atlanta Journal-Constitution did some as well, right?
The author, Jack Bernard, doesn’t describe himself as a conservative here. He used to be a Republican here in Georgia and held county office as one, but nothing he says here actually has him saying “as a conservative.”
So the AJC must have looked into him a little, right?
Well, I did.
He writes semi-regularly for the Henry County Times. Take a look at some of his work, for a moment. In one piece, he compares Kyle Rittenhouse’s self-defense shooting as comparable to the Greensboro massacre carried out by Klansmen.
He argues for Medicaid expansion here in Georgia–a couple of times, actually–and even advocated for Medicaid for All.
That’s not a conservative. That’s a recipe for someone who is, by default, anti-gun.
But the AJC framed it that way on purpose, at least in my opinion. They want conservatives in the state–who still make up a large chunk of the voters here–to somehow think they’re listening to a fellow conservative provide an anti-gun point of view. They know, as we do, that people are willing to listen to arguments from someone on their own side that they won’t entertain from the other.
That’s what we’re seeing here.
Bernard isn’t my target here. He’s entitled to his opinions and, frankly, he’s welcome to be wrong. If the people in Henry County have an issue with his op-ed being in the paper, they can deal with it there. I don’t actually care because, frankly, his reach isn’t that great.
But the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has a much bigger reach, and they’re misrepresenting who Bernard is in an effort, I believe, to try and trick people into embracing gun control.
It’s annoying, to say the least, because it doesn’t take much research to suss out just who they’re presenting here as a conservative gun owner but is, in fact, nothing of the sort.