12/08/2012

Media Discussion of my pieces on Bob Costas

Regarding my first op-ed this last week at Fox News on Costas here is some of the reaction.  I will update this later when I have time to put in responses.

From Entertainment Weekly:
As you can guess, his commentary was closely scrutinized, and while some applauded his effort, many criticized him for broaching a politically taboo subject in the midst of Sunday Night Football. Second-Amendment advocates like Fox News’ John Lott dismissed Costas for his “emotional reaction,” and media-watcher Howard Kurtz said, “If Bob Costas wanted to urge gun control during NFL, he should have made his own case, not quoted a columnist.” In less decorous language, Deadspin’s Sean Newell called it a “sanctimonious horsesh-t” editorial that was “so laughably out of touch it almost has to be satire.” . . . .
I didn't dismiss Costas' comments because they were emotional.  The relevant part of the sentence where I made this reference read like this: "Bob Costas’ emotional reaction to the deaths of Belcher and Perkins is understandable . . . ."  My problem wasn't that he was emotional, it was that what he said was factually wrong.

The New Yorker:
John Lott, a anti-gun-control advocate, worried, in an attack on Costas atFoxNews.com, that statistics showing that most victims know their murderer might dissuade people from keeping a weapon in the house: “But this claim regarding domestic violence irresponsibly makes people afraid of those who they have no reason to be afraid of…. Acquaintance murders also include prostitutes and their pimps or Johns.” There are few things less helpful, in the case of guns and domestic violence, than the assumption that the right sort of people will never be hurt by either. 
Domestic, or intimate-partner violence, is a problem that goes well beyond guns. Some forty per cent of women who are murdered in America are killed by men with whom they are or were in relationships (the most dangerous moment is when she tries to leave). . . .
An op-ed by M.D. Harmon in the Press Herald:
As John Lott, author of the book, "More Guns, Less Crime," noted in a Fox News commentary Monday, "Whether people like Costas like it or not, the facts speak for themselves." 
The facts also disprove Costas' subsequent allegation that legally owned guns are greatly to blame for crime among minorities. Guns are used in inner city gang crimes, certainly, but they are almost all illegally acquired and possessed by their users. 
Indeed, gun crime rates are highest in the cities where legal gun possession is most strongly discouraged -- New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C., chief among them. 
But where guns are widely and legally possessed, crime rates fall. And studies have shown more than a million crimes are halted or prevented by legally owned firearms each year. Just the display of a weapon discourages most offenders, who look for easier targets to victimize. 
Therefore, gun crimes most often take place in places where criminals know they have a high probability of being the only person on the scene who is armed. 
Colorado and Virginia both permit carrying firearms, but the Aurora movie theater and the Virginia Tech campus where two of the nation's most famous recent mass killings took place both "banned" guns on their property. . . .
From Entertainment Weekly:
As you can guess, his commentary was closely scrutinized, and while some applauded his effort, many criticized him for broaching a politically taboo subject in the midst of Sunday Night Football. Second-Amendment advocates like Fox News’ John Lott dismissed Costas for his “emotional reaction,” and media-watcher Howard Kurtz said, “If Bob Costas wanted to urge gun control during NFL, he should have made his own case, not quoted a columnist.” In less decorous language, Deadspin’s Sean Newell called it a “sanctimonious horsesh-t” editorial that was “so laughably out of touch it almost has to be satire.” . . . .
The New Yorker:
John Lott, a anti-gun-control advocate, worried, in an attack on Costas at FoxNews.com, that statistics showing that most victims know their murderer might dissuade people from keeping a weapon in the house: “But this claim regarding domestic violence irresponsibly makes people afraid of those who they have no reason to be afraid of…. Acquaintance murders also include prostitutes and their pimps or Johns.” There are few things less helpful, in the case of guns and domestic violence, than the assumption that the right sort of people will never be hurt by either. 
Domestic, or intimate-partner violence, is a problem that goes well beyond guns. Some forty per cent of women who are murdered in America are killed by men with whom they are or were in relationships (the most dangerous moment is when she tries to leave). . . .
An op-ed by M.D. Harmon in the Press Herald:
As John Lott, author of the book, "More Guns, Less Crime," noted in a Fox News commentary Monday, "Whether people like Costas like it or not, the facts speak for themselves." 
The facts also disprove Costas' subsequent allegation that legally owned guns are greatly to blame for crime among minorities. Guns are used in inner city gang crimes, certainly, but they are almost all illegally acquired and possessed by their users. 
Indeed, gun crime rates are highest in the cities where legal gun possession is most strongly discouraged -- New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C., chief among them. 
But where guns are widely and legally possessed, crime rates fall. And studies have shown more than a million crimes are halted or prevented by legally owned firearms each year. Just the display of a weapon discourages most offenders, who look for easier targets to victimize. 
Therefore, gun crimes most often take place in places where criminals know they have a high probability of being the only person on the scene who is armed. 
Colorado and Virginia both permit carrying firearms, but the Aurora movie theater and the Virginia Tech campus where two of the nation's most famous recent mass killings took place both "banned" guns on their property. . . .
From the Heartland Institute on the Costas case:
Economist and author John Lott, Jr., was a guest on Mark Levin’s radio show Monday night, discussing his book, “More Guns, Less Crime.” Lott’s research and analysis on crime rates in states with and without stringent gun controls is epic. It demonstrates indisputably that crime decreases as gun possession – or the legal rights to it – increase. Heartland is a friend of Lott and interviewed him two years ago for this video. . . .
Other places such as Eddie Scarry at The Blaze and Timothy Johnson at Media Matters also put up posts.  It is interesting that Media Matters is constantly making false claims to attack the notion that people should be able to defend themselves with guns when David Brock, the founder of Media Matters, has had staff illegally carry guns for his personal protection.

My second op-ed, which hasn't gotten the same attention, is available here.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Michael Ayers said...

How are you mister john lott I'm here not to criticize bob costas on gun control issues. But I'm here to say bob costas is a great man and he is a man's man I will never forget bob was the master of ceremonies at the special Olympics in New Haven Connecticut well to make a long story short was Bob Costas limo driver after the ceremony at the Special Olympics bob was hungry you want to get something to eat well as bobs limo driverBob had asked me where Pepe's pizza was and my response was no I don't know where Pepe's pizza is Bob had asked me where am I fromat the time I was living in New Britain Connecticut so as bobs limo driver Bob said he will show me the way to get to pepes pizza as his driver I was kind of embarrassedBob said don't worry about it. So bob had treated me at pepes pizzia while in pepes people were looking at both of us the way bob talks it sounded like a sports interview that was great we talk about every sport I believe I also remember he showed me a old baseball card micky mantle that he had when was a kid growing up now this was in the late 90s. I remember a few years later I was watching a sports channel and I watch bob spoke so eloquently at Mickey Mantle's funeral I kinda had a tear to my eye after hearing him talk it was a pleasure to meet and to have dinner with Bob Costas I never got a chance to treat him back out to dinnerbut I guess one day I will I'll never forget that great night thanks Bob

7/23/2013 1:18 PM  
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