Veteran journalist Dan Rather: “This march could be a tipping point“
By Janet Ekstract February 26, 2018
NEW YORK- The March for Life campaign has been instrumental in opening the way for a more sane dialogue about the need for much tougher gun laws while motivating increasing public outcry across America to resolve the issue of gun control, once and for all.
The most spectacular part of this widespread debate has been unfolding on major news programs for the last several weeks as well as creating major buzz on social media, especially twitter and facebook.
One particularly heated debate took place on New Day with CNN host Alisyn Camerota who was clearly shocked when National Rifle Association (NRA) spokesperson Dana Loesch made the startling statement: “The media love mass shootings,” to which Camerota quickly replied, “How dare you.” Loesh wasted no time in accusing the press of doing anything to get higher ratings even resorting to allegations that the media “love crying families because it brings in higher ratings.”
Other surprising remarks made to the press have been fodder for a captive media audience in the U.S. as well as abroad. President Trump drew huge ire over his comment made at his most recent public address to the nation this week when he commented totally off the cuff: “A teacher would have shot the hell out of him before he knew what happened.” The president was referring to his proposal to arm teachers and that if teachers had the right to carry a firearm they would have easily been able to take down the gunman.
A majority of educators, students and administrators vehemently disagree and publicly stated at CNN’s recent Town Hall televised forum, that more guns are not a long-term solution while angrily calling out the president for even suggesting such a concept.
Firearm and law enforcement echoed that sentiment because according to a number of experts who have experience with the power of an AR-15 assault rifle, the question remains as to how an even average size handgun could have been any match for such a powerful rifle in such a spontaneous burst of rapid gunfire.
Clearly, veteran journalist Dan Rather agrees. Rather appeared earlier today on CNN’s morning show Reliable Sources, with host Brian Stelter, and had this to say: “Donald Trump in his mind, he thinks he’s triumphant..this business of guns has damaged him.”
Also appearing with Rather were March for Life campaign organizer and shooting survivor, David Hogg as well as Republican strategist and political commentator, Doug Heye who both weighed in on the issue.
Hogg, who has been the target of Internet trolls accusing him of being an ‘actor’ remarked: “These people attacking me in the media have given me great PR.” He said because of those comments, he now has over 1.3 million views on March for Life. While Hogg labeled the false remarks as “hypocritical and disgusting,” he also made it very clear that such attacks won’t deter him or the cause at all.
Heye agreed with both Hogg and Rather that immediate action must be taken for stricter gun control laws but cautioned that one of the issues in getting the message across to Republican voters is that “a large portion of these voters perceive the press as being against them.” Heye recommended that those with influence in the media make it a priority to be more cognizant of this if they want to see real change happen.
CNN’s Jake Tapper, host of the program State of The Union, spoke earlier today with Sheriff Scott Israel. When Tapper raised the point that nothing was done to deter the shooter even though a number of people and law enforcement had been previously contacted and warned about the gunman’s threats to carry out a mass school shooting, clearly Israel took issue with that.
Sheriff Israel assured Tapper that everything was being done in the investigation and that “no one has the right to their own set of facts but everyone has the right to their opinion.” The sheriff was referring to the fact that a plethora of rumors and misinformation had been circulating on various social media sites, making it harder for the public to decipher the truth.
Public sentiment is clearly on the side of tougher gun laws according to the latest CNN poll which shows an overwhelming 70 percent support in favor of stricter gun laws with only 27 percent opposed. The question to pose now is how will the president be able to distance himself from his controversial remarks at his most recent address to the nation.
When Brian Stelter was about to conclude his show Reliable Sources, he asked Hogg what his goals were moving forward. Hogg said he wanted to “continue to be instrumental in changing the world.” When Rather was asked what advice he would give Hogg in his mission, he commented: “Those other forces are depending on you forgetting, wearing out, going away.” Hogg’s reply was “We’re not going to let that happen.”
But Rather had a more sobering remark to make at the very end of the show which demonstrates the real bottom line in this entire gun control debate. As the veteran journalist so solemnly remarked: “Many people in Congress are bought and paid for by the NRA, the key votes in Congress are because of NRA money, not anything else.”
He added: “I’m in awe of this movement…this march could be a tipping point.”