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
Former Bloomberg Lackey Comes Clean on True Anti-gun Agenda

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, July 21, 2017

Former Bloomberg Lackey Comes Clean on True Anti-gun Agenda

Back when Mark Glaze was executive director of Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns, and later Everytown for Gun Safety, he went to great lengths to portray his master’s anti-gun positions as moderate. Glaze used ...

“She Persisted” – Gun Owner Fights Unlawful “No Return” Gun Policy

News  

Friday, July 21, 2017

“She Persisted” – Gun Owner Fights Unlawful “No Return” Gun Policy

On July 17, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit confirmed that law enforcement officials in New York acted unlawfully with respect to guns confiscated from a Nassau County woman in 2012.  

Supreme Court Asked to Review Maryland's Gun Ban

News  

Friday, July 21, 2017

Supreme Court Asked to Review Maryland's Gun Ban

A group of Maryland citizens, with the support of the National Rifle Association, filed a petition to the United States Supreme Court on Friday seeking to reverse a Court of Appeals ruling that stripped some of America’s most ...

The Need for National Reciprocity

News  

Friday, July 21, 2017

The Need for National Reciprocity

A report from the Crime Prevention Research Center estimates that the number of concealed carry permits issued last year was the largest increase ever – continuing a four year trend of record setting increases in ...

“March” Madness: Media Hypes Non-Event at NRA Headquarters

News  

Friday, July 21, 2017

“March” Madness: Media Hypes Non-Event at NRA Headquarters

Numbers don’t lie. But gun control groups and the news media do. That explains why so many accounts of last Friday’s so-called Women’s March From #NRA2DOJ bear no resemblance to the event those of us ...

The Danger Of A “Not In My Backyard” Mentality On Shooting Ranges

News  

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Danger Of A “Not In My Backyard” Mentality On Shooting Ranges

Muscatine County, Iowa, is home to about 40,000 people, and like too many places around the country, gun owners there have no public range where they can practice or compete safely. That may be changing, ...

Home Alone in Washington State

News  

Friday, July 21, 2017

Home Alone in Washington State

Back in 2013, when Washington State’s anti-gun groups rolled out Initiative 594, they promised voters this “universal background check” law would save lives by keeping “firearms out of dangerous hands” because private gun sales would ...

One More Reason Gun Owners Should Be Celebrated

News  

Second Amendment  

Thursday, July 20, 2017

One More Reason Gun Owners Should Be Celebrated

The safety record of America’s gun owners is nothing short of stunning. 

When Gun Control Fails

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, July 21, 2017

When Gun Control Fails

Gun control is pushed as a strategy to keep Americans safe in their homes, schools and workplaces. It is presented as the key component in safer streets, neighborhoods and families. But what happens when gun ...

California:  "Assault Weapon" Regulations Take 3: CA DOJ Resubmits Regulations

Friday, July 21, 2017

California: "Assault Weapon" Regulations Take 3: CA DOJ Resubmits Regulations

Today, July 21, the California Department of Justice (“DOJ”), without warning or any notification,  submitted another set of proposed regulations for the registration of newly classified “assault weapons” to the Office of Administrative Law.  As ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -
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.