Jewish World Review April 5, 2002/ 24 Nisan, 5762
SAPs -- Second Amendment Phonies
With the Academy Awards behind us, we now turn our attention to the SAP Awards,
honoring the biggest Second Amendment Phony. And the nominees are:
- "The West Wing." In a recent episode, President Josiah Bartlet, played by Martin
Sheen, pronounced the Second Amendment "stupid-a--." After all, he said to an aide, we have the
police!? (Apparently, "West Wing" writers don't know that the amendment exists to protect
citizens against tyranny of government.)
California State Senator Don Perata. In the wake of California's projected $17
billion budget deficit, anti-gunner Sen. Perata proposes a tax on bullets. Perata intends to
use the money to support medical trauma centers. "Bullets cause injuries that are expensive to
treat," offered Perata, "and generally speaking, the public is footing the bill." Perata
applied for and received a permit to carry a concealed weapon and justified his request by
noting, "My public policy efforts to seek rational regulation of firearms have engendered the
enmity of some individuals who have made overt threats on my life and the well-being of my
family." What about the "enmity" one encounters living in a high-crime, inner-city
Sharon Stone. In May 1999, actress Sharon Stone stated she intended to turn in her
firearms. "I urge you to trust and believe in your local law enforcement officers," said Stone,
"and to trust and believe in the courage of following your heart and surrendering your fear and
anger." Yet, according to Movieline magazine, Stone used a rifle to threaten a trespasser. "As
(the gate) swung open," said Stone, "I pumped my shotgun and said, 'I'm gonna blow your ass all
over the street.' And I heard him land when he jumped and his footsteps running off."
Geraldo Rivera. On May 3, 1999, on CNBC, Rivera announced his support for gun
control. "How much longer," Rivera said, "are we gonna be wrapping in the flag of patriotism to
justify 250 million guns out there?" Yet when Fox Cable sent Rivera to cover the Afghan war, he
and his brother packed heat. A contradiction? Rivera explained, "We refuse to be crime victims.
We're not the victim types. If they're going to get us, it's going to be in a gunfight. It's
not going to be a murder. It's not going to be a crime. It's going to be a gunfight."
Michael Bellesiles, author, "Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture."
Bellesiles argued that, contrary to popular belief, few early Americans owned guns. So much for
the alleged gun culture, argued Bellesiles, that Second Amendment supporters claim helped found
America. Assuming people included guns in their wills, Bellesiles looked at probate records of
early Americans, which presumably give us an idea as to the extent of gun ownership. But
several people raised questions about the accuracy of Bellesiles' data, some of which turned
out to be nonexistent. Emory University, Bellesiles' employer, said the criticisms constituted
"prima facie evidence of scholarly misconduct."
The red-faced New York Times revised its earlier enthusiastic review of "Arming
America" and said, "Over the past year a number of scholars who have examined his sources say
he has seriously misused historical records and possibly fabricated them. They say the outcome,
when all the evidence is in, could be one of the worst academic scandals in years." Ouch.
NRA President Charlton Heston's liberal friends. In 1992, Los Angeles burned after
the first Rodney King verdict. In his book "The Courage To Be Free," Heston said that his
anti-gun liberal friends called and wanted to borrow a gun and get lessons on how to shoot it.
"I could teach you," said Heston, "but not in an hour."
Rosie O'Donnell, comedian, anti-gun activist and co-organizer of the Million Mom
March. In her ambush interview of Second Amendment supporter Tom Selleck, O'Donnell said, "You
can't say 'I will not take responsibility for anything the NRA represents' if you're doing an
ad for the NRA. You can't say that." Yet O'Donnell hired a bodyguard to accompany her son to
his private school. Oh, and the bodyguard applied to the State of Connecticut for a … permit to
carry a concealed weapon.
Sarah Brady, anti-gun activist and former head of Handgun Control, Inc. Brady urged
Americans to rid guns from their homes. "We must stop equating guns with protection," Brady
once said, "because more evidence shows that guns increase the risk of violence, not decrease
it. … (The) gun lobby continues to peddle the notion that more guns will make us safer." Yet in
her new biography, "A Good Fight," Brady admits that she purchased a Remington .30-06 rifle for
her 18-year-old son. "I can't describe how I felt when I picked up that rifle," said Brady,
"loaded it into my little car and drove home. It seems so incredibly strange: Sarah Brady, of
all people, packing heat."
© 2002, Creators Syndicate
JWR contributor Larry Elder is the author of the newly released, The Ten Things You Can't Say in America.
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