by: Kim Weissman
April 18, 1999

The United States is engaged is a war, in which our military is being hamstrung by consensus war-fighting, political meddling, and a shortage of essential equipment. We are about to deploy tens or hundreds of thousands of ground troops into combat, to achieve goals which nobody has yet been able to define. The communist Chinese have stolen American nuclear secrets, which endanger our national security. The military intelligence apparatus of the government of communist China tried to influence our last presidential election. The President of the United States has been credibly accused of rape. Now that Congress is returning from a two week recess, what does the New York Times consider to be "the first priority for House members"? According to the New York Times, members of the United States House of Representatives must "sign a petition demanding that Speaker Dennis Hastert schedule a prompt vote on campaign finance reform".

As has been endlessly explained in this newsletter and elsewhere, campaign finance "reform" of the McCain-Feingold/Shays-Meehan variety would have one major consequence: vastly expanding the power of the media to shape public opinion and influence national elections, without the inconvenience of having their lies contradicted and their bias exposed.

The major media wants this expansion of its power so badly that the editors of the major dailies are salivating at the prospect. They are so blinded by their own self-interest that nothing else matters: not war, not military readiness, not threats to our national security, not corruption of our electoral process, not official malfeasance or corruption at the highest levels of our government. From their viewpoint, the expansion of media power is vital, because they sense that their ideological lock on public opinion is slipping away.

Case in point: gun control. For years, the media has been engaged in a disinformation campaign designed to convince the public that firearms were unalloyed evil, with no positive benefits whatsoever; and for years they have seen gun control laws imposing ever more draconian restrictions on the ability of law abiding citizens to defend themselves. But the tide is turning, and the media is growing frantic as they see their goal of disarming Americans fading away.

In recent years they have seen 15 states change their Constitutions to strengthen a citizen’s right to keep and bear arms, so that 44 states now contain such provisions. Ten years ago, only 9 states allowed citizens to obtain permits to carry concealed weapons; now 31 states have enacted laws allowing the concealed carrying of a firearm.

They have seen study after study demonstrating the uselessness of gun control laws in preventing crimes, and have seen the evidence pile up of private citizens defending themselves and thwarting crimes. They have even seen the reliably anti-gun Reno Justice Department fund a study which concluded that firearms are used by private citizens to thwart crimes at least 100,000 times every year. And to add insult to injury, they have seen courts deciding that law abiding private citizens actually do have a Constitutional right to own firearms; and most galling of all, just last month they saw a federal court rule that the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution actually means exactly what it says.

The media’s response to this is predictable: more extremist propaganda.

The Washington Post, demonstrating itself completely in thrall to the gun control fanatics, this week printed one of the most blatantly biased examples of media disinformation, in the guise of a report on lawsuits against firearms manufacturers. Masquerading as a "news" story on its front page was nothing less than a propaganda piece supplied by the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence, demanding gun control. It was billed as the "first in a series of occasional articles" which, not surprisingly, failed to even mention a few of the simple truths which seemed beyond the capability of the writer to understand. Such as the fact that guns do not fire themselves, nor are they used by gun manufacturers to commit crimes. Crimes -- including gun crimes -- are intentional acts committed by criminals. Criminals who, incidentally, are just as willing to ignore gun control laws as any other laws.

Now that the precedent of suits against manufacturers of products for their illegal use has been set, perhaps the media will try to apply the same illogic to the rest of society. Next time someone is killed by a drunk driver, how about a lawsuit against the car manufacturer, or the liquor bottling company? Better yet, how about lawsuits by crime victims against government officials for failing to carry out their police functions? After all, since these bureaucrats are trying their best to deprive people of the ability to defend themselves against criminal depredations, haven’t those government officials therefore assumed the responsibility of protecting their citizens, and don’t those governments therefore now have a duty to prevent crime?

When propaganda is the goal, truth and rational thought are the first casualties. So the media continues its campaign of lies and disinformation, and demands an expansion of its influence through campaign finance "reform" which will significantly impede the public’s access to alternate viewpoints. Mouthing pious platitudes about the "public good", they insist on establishing themselves as the gatekeepers on what information the public is entitled to know.

The above article is the property of Kim Weissman, and is reprinted with his permission.
Contact him prior to reproducing.


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