Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

New York Times Relies on Gun Prohibitionist Propaganda, Stigmatizes Suicide

Friday, January 20, 2017

New York Times Relies on Gun Prohibitionist Propaganda, Stigmatizes Suicide

In a December 5, 2015, front page editorial, the New York Times finally admitted what discerning readers had long understood – that the paper advocates the prohibition and confiscation of certain types of now-lawfully possessed firearms. Fittingly, the Old Grey Lady has come to rely on the work of one the few remaining gun control organizations willing to match its candor, the Violence Policy Center.

In the past two years, the Times’s editorial board has cited VPC’s long-running “Concealed Carry Killers” compilation on six different occasions as part of its ceaseless campaign against the Right-to-Carry. The ongoing VPC project is an attempt to portray Right-to-Carry permit holders, and any legislation that respects the Right-to-Carry, as a threat to public safety. VPC’s report consists of a list of anecdotes gleaned from news reports about violence perpetrated by individuals reported to have a Right-to-Carry permit.

Misleading its readers, the Times typically characterizes VPC as a “gun safety group.” In truth, VPC represents the fringe of the gun control movement. An express goal of VPC is the prohibition of the private ownership of handguns. Readers can still find a copy of the 1994 VPC report “Cease Fire” on the group’s website. The report contended, “Handguns should be banned from future sale except for military and law-enforcement personnel.”

In recent years, some gun control organizations have sought to temper their anti-gun rhetoric. Despite decades of failure in pursing their agenda, VPC has seen no need to moderate its message. The group specializes in sensationalism, calling commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms “Bullet Hoses,” and claiming NRA’s award-winning Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program is an attempt to market guns to children using a “Joe Camel with Feathers.”

Honest researchers do not need to rely on a handful of anecdotes to measure the conduct of Right-to-Carry permit holders. Florida and Texas maintain state-level data on the revocation of Right-to-Carry permits. A recent analysis of this data found that permit holders are significantly more law-abiding than the general public.

Moreover, VPC and the Times’s use, of the “Concealed Carry Killers” compilation as a way argue against Right-to-Carry permits and respecting the Right-to-Carry in more places is intentionally misleading. VPC’s list of incidents includes various scenarios where an individual’s reported status as a permit holder was irrelevant to their actions.

A look at the cases on VPC’s list from January 1, 2016 onward reveals this problem. Of the 35 incidents during this time period, 15 occurred in private residences, and another five occurred in areas where a permit would not be required to possess a firearm. Two cases involved individuals whose permits were not honored by the state where the incident occurred. Purportedly a list of “killers,” of the 2016-17 incidents, eight were accidents. Though perhaps already convictions in the minds of gun control supporters, 19 of the 35 recent cases are listed as pending adjudication.

Some of the older cases in VPC’s compilation are even more ridiculous. VPC cites a 2008 case where a reported permit holder strangled an individual to death. The group also labels a reported permit holder who was shot to death after his firearm was wrestled away from him as a “killer.”

Even more egregiously, VPC also includes hundreds of those who have taken their own lives, without harming another individual, in its list of “Concealed Carry Killers.” Those capable of even the slightest compassion can understand the perversity of listing those who have committed suicide as “killers” alongside those who have actually harmed others. Worse, VPC’s - and by extension the Times’s - demeaning treatment of suicide in this way actually impairs suicide prevention efforts nationwide.

Mental health researchers have recognized that the stigma surrounding suicide can prevent at risk individuals from acquiring the help they need. This problem is sometimes reported as pertaining to service members and veterans; however, it can affect all segments of society. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recognized this problem. In explaining this issue in their materials, the CDC noted:

Many people are uncomfortable with the topic of suicide. Too often, victims are blamed and their families and friends are left stigmatized. As a result, people rarely communicate openly about suicide. Thus, an important public health problem is left hidden in secrecy, which hinders effective prevention.

Callously labelling those who have taken their own lives as “killers” only serves to further push the issue of suicide into the shadows and alienate those who are at risk.

“Concealed Carry Killers” is the sort of misleading and haphazard propaganda that VPC has trafficked in for nearly thirty years. That the Times’s editorial page would cite such disinformation without adequately informing readers of the nature of its source and its numerous flaws is a sad commentary on the “paper of record.” Such behavior no doubt contributes to the public’s record-low confidence in mass media.

TRENDING NOW

News  

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Federal Court Upholds Decision to Block California’s Magazine Ban

A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit issued a ruling in the case of Duncan v. Becerra on Tuesday upholding a lower court’s decision to suspend enforcement of California’s restriction on the possession of magazines ...

Anti-gun Efforts to Expand U.N. Regulations to Ammunition Continue

News  

Friday, July 6, 2018

Anti-gun Efforts to Expand U.N. Regulations to Ammunition Continue

Shortly before 4:00am last Saturday morning, the two week long Third Review Conference (RevCon3) on the Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat, and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All ...

Washington: Seattle City Council Passes Ordinance Making Firearms Unavailable for Self-Defense

Monday, July 16, 2018

Washington: Seattle City Council Passes Ordinance Making Firearms Unavailable for Self-Defense

On July 9th, the Seattle City Council passed a mandatory firearm storage ordinance to restrict the self-defense rights of Seattle residents.  The ordinance, if signed by Mayor Jenny Durkan, will impose a one-size-fits-all method of storing firearms as ...

Justice Scalia Made Clear the Second Amendment and Heller Prohibit “Assault Weapon” Bans

News  

Second Amendment  

Gun Laws  

Friday, July 13, 2018

Justice Scalia Made Clear the Second Amendment and Heller Prohibit “Assault Weapon” Bans

On July 9, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) offered the following ham-handed statement in an attempted attack on President Donald Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee, D.C. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Brett Kavanaugh is a true Second Amendment radical. ...

Illinois: Governor Signs Two Gun Control Bills

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Illinois: Governor Signs Two Gun Control Bills

On July 17th, Governor Bruce Rauner signed House Bill 2354 and Senate Bill 3256 into law.

California DOJ Withdraws Proposed Regulations Expanding Application of “Assault Weapon” Definitions

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

California DOJ Withdraws Proposed Regulations Expanding Application of “Assault Weapon” Definitions

On Monday, the California Department of Justice, Bureau of Firearms (“CA DOJ”) officially withdrew the proposed regulations that would have expanded the improperly adopted “assault weapon” definitions, to apply in all circumstances. This withdrawal comes ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

NRA Endorses State Senator Leah Vukmir for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin

News  

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

NRA Endorses State Senator Leah Vukmir for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin

FAIRFAX, Va. – The National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF) is proud to announce its endorsement of state Sen. Leah Vukmir in the 2018 Republican U.S. Senate Primary in Wisconsin.

Too Young or Too Old... To Own a Gun?

News  

Friday, July 6, 2018

Too Young or Too Old... To Own a Gun?

A common theme among anti-gun extremists is what we often refer to as the “Goldilocks” approach to limiting access to firearms by law-abiding citizens.  Rather than admit that the ultimate goal is to disarm all ...

Delaware: Governor Signs Bill Legalizing Sunday Deer Hunting

Hunting  

Friday, July 13, 2018

Delaware: Governor Signs Bill Legalizing Sunday Deer Hunting

On July 11th, Governor John Carney signed Senate Bill 198 into law to expand hunting opportunities in Delaware by eliminating the prohibition against hunting for deer on Sundays and allowing for the harvesting of deer on Sundays ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.