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Journalism Prof Misfires on NRA Speech Claims

It would seem that journalism professor Chris Swindell has forgotten the elementary lesson we all learned that one should be able to answer the 5 Ws when reporting a story. Sure, he asserted the Who, and he made some dubious claims about the What and Why. But, he didn’t include the When, Where–you know, the actual evidence for his claims.

Here it is. The NRA advocates armed rebellion against the duly elected government of the United States of America. That’s treason, and it’s worthy of the firing squad.

I’m sure most of you have read this article by now since it was linked on Drudge, but I have to admit that I’m floored the Charleston Gazette opted to run it since claims like this aren’t backed up by any kinds of quotes or speech references. It’s devoid of facts, but makes outlandish claims while citing zero evidence for much of his piece. In the few areas where he does reference some kind of “fact,” it is misconstrued beyond even what even other liberals will claim, or as far as I can tell in one reference, completely falsified.

The closest Swindell comes to actually citing any sort of “evidence,” he completely misconstrues the case beyond even what Media Matters was willing to do. He references Jim Porter’s speech where he made the comment that in the South, plenty of people still call the Civil War the War of Northern Aggression. He made the comment as a joke in discussing the fact that the NRA was founded in New York, where he was speaking in 2012. (See what I did there? I answered who, where, when, why, and what. That lesson is free of charge, Chris Swindell.) Swindell falsifies the “fact” and claims that it was an entire speech about the Civil War. No, it wasn’t. In fact, Porter, in one throw away line during a speech that briefly mentioned the history of the NRA, was making light of something that is actually true in some areas. I didn’t even live in the old south that was most involved in the Civil War, and I heard people call it the War of Northern Aggression.

At another point in Swindell’s article, he says:

To turn the song lyric they so love to quote back on them, “We’ll put a boot in your —, it’s the American way.”

I know this sounds petty, but where they hell is the evidence that any NRA leader quoted that song at Annual Meeting or any other event? I was there, and I don’t recall hearing it. I searched for it, and I can’t find any references for Wayne LaPierre or Jim Porter quoting from the song. In fact, the singer responsible for the song from which that lyric is lifted is a Democrat who openly supports Obama’s policies. (Toby Keith was once hired to play an NRA convention 5 years prior to his declaration of support for Obama. That puts Keith outside of the mainstream of even other Oklahoma Democrats since not even the Democratic elected official to DC would support Obama.)

But back to the point of the post, there’s no actual evidence that I can find that this lyric was quoted. The evidence shows that Jim Porter did not actually deliver an entire speech on the Civil War while only calling it the War of Northern Aggression. And there are no actual quotes referenced that back up Swindell’s claim that it’s time to kill NRA members with assaults from tanks, jets, and missiles while putting the rest of us up in front of a firing squad.

Now, I get that the Charleston Gazette probably ran this piece because they knew exactly the kind of response it would get. I mean, come on; who isn’t going to click on an article by a journalism professor who advocates killing 5 million Americans for having different political views? But maybe I’m naïve when I think that even such link bait should at least follow the most elementary of journalistic principles. Apparently the editors of the Gazette and the journalism department of Marshall University don’t agree and believe that facts are optional in their reports.

34 Responses to “Journalism Prof Misfires on NRA Speech Claims”

  1. jbiros says:

    Advocating the killing of 5 Mil. American citizens without due process. Yep. Sounds like a progressive journalism professor to me.

  2. Terrible Texan says:

    On a brighter note, only 85% of Americans support gun control. That’s down 5 from ninety, we must be winning!

  3. jdrush says:

    The comment from Tim W. at the article nails it:

    “I wonder if the author recognizes the irony in calling for military action against law abiding citizens whose primary fault is concern over government abuse of power….”

    • Dennis says:

      Holy Smoke… you shouldn’t confuse the poor misguided “professor” with the facts and other foreign matters like that. I mean it really is not fair that we demand someone who is granted a top degree in “journalsim” to actually perform….

      Geesh what is this world coming to?????

      Obviously I am quite NOT amazed. The level that acedemia has sank with the advent of the “Progressive” subversion of oour schools is so obvious. Even the word “progressive” smell coincidentally like communism, what they are shoveling that is, I can’t imaging a blind hog missing it.

      After all Communism by any other name smells like the death such Régimes have resolved to in the past all in the name of helping their fellows throw off the yoke of tyranny.

      I think perhaps that communist are a sort of mentally disabled folks who really believe that the “elites” are in it for the common people. Surrendering yourself to such a system is tantamount to suicide and shold be handled in the same way until such time as the individual is rehabilitated or proves themseves to not be a threat to themselves or society.

      Want proof, how many billionares in China and how many pesants are not fed properly working from birth to death in abject squalor???

  4. Whetherman says:

    FWIW, here is a video of Jim Porter making those comments. As jokes go, I think he was a little hammer-handed in his delivery, but that’s just me. (You may complain rightly that the video has been edited, mainly toward the end, but I believe the relevant statements are represented accurately.)

    I used to use the term “War of Northern Aggression” when I felt like being edgy, but that was until I came to realize it had become a dog-whistle to the Neo-Confederate movement, which in turn has not-very-savory connections, and few savory ones. You may choose to argue with that, but I say We have enough problems with our battle for gun rights, without associating unrelated issues. We need NRA spokespeople with a little common sense.

    • Bitter says:

      I’m not advocating for calling it the War of Northern Aggression. Nor do I think that is the wisest of moves. However, calling Jim Porter’s entire speech (which actually is available online if you really search) a speech on the Civil War that only refers to it as the War of Northern Aggression is factually wrong. That is actually the point of this post.

      • Whetherman says:

        “Wisest of moves” is exactly the point. In our sound-bite world, everyone who stands up on their hind legs in public has to know that (like a verbal Tweet) what takes several seconds to say will be used to characterize you, probably forever.

        If you return to your linked column by the good professor, and read the comments that follow it, I would suggest that not one of those commenters would be at all impressed with your analysis of the facts above. Porter said what we he said, and worst of all he said “We,” as in “You’ve chosen me for your man, and here is how I think. . .” And saying it in 2012 was not like he had said it in say, 1962.

        • Thomas says:

          mmmmm….I don’t see how the editor would allow this to be published in their news paper. While mechanically ok, the article is unprofessional. Too much derogatory name calling.

          also there are some poorly presented facts in the article. The civil war was not about slavery, but state rights in relation to federal powers.

          • Dennis says:

            Let’s not forget that Lincoln did not go to war for slavery. He stated emphatacally that it was to save the union. he specifically said that he wanted the union in tact with slavery or with out but did comment of the fact that freeing the salves would result in a glut of the cheap labor market. Lincoln freed the slaves utilizing a strategic move for the war effort. It also gave credibility to “the cause”. We have been spoon fed this since childhood and the ruse is not true.

            The Constitution institutionalized slavery, sorry as it may seem and to not seem a proponent of slavery, I state the facts as they are historically occur. The South was heaviky dependant upon the institution. They rightly saw the incursion of legislation by northern interests as agression. The Constitution should have been amended to provide an avenue for the dissolution of the institution. Time, the great advocate of change, would have destroyed the institution as well as the economic element inherent slavey’s demise through technology and the market transfer of the cotton supply from the South to Egypt. So much for the Fairy Tale that has been used to divide this country for way too long. In this light this so called “professor” shows himself to be devoid of fact and as divisive as all good communists.

            The war was commenced through an act of insurrection, the South fired on Ft. Sumter plain and simple. It was a Federal Enclave, Article I Section 10 Clause 17. Had this no occured the South would have had the ligitimate right, however morally reprehensive, to succeed. If our schools were really schools and not the insturments of Marxist/Communist subversion-the methodology of cowards, we would have put this object BS session to bed one hundred years past.

            The fact that this idiot “professor” has any crdibility at all is due to the undue influence which is funded by tax payer money in direct conflict to Article IV Section 4, the United States shall provide a Republican form of government to the states”. Like it hate it or indifferent the Supreme Law of the land is what is says it is not a bunch of communist taught judges in communist run schools.. Louis Brandeis and Felix frankfurter were both COmminists, they were Woodrow Wilson’s top advisors, they were educated in the 1800s, so how long has communism been taught in this country and proliferate in the “progressive era”?????

            So every individual who prostitutes themselves for the Communist fairy tale are traitors, subversives or just ignorant puppets. Anyway you look at it, and ignorance of the law being no excuse, they all have earned their lot.

            I will surrender the soap box now….

    • Rob Crawford says:

      If you can hear the “dog whistle”, you’re one of the dogs.

    • Arnie says:

      I understand and appreciate your desire for wisdom and tact, Whetherman, but I am tired of having to suppress my convictions so as not offend the same willfully ignorant lefties who have no qualms calling me gun-nut, wing-nut, rebel, traitor, etc.

      Lincoln ordered his Northern army to invade the State of Virginia on its way to punish and enslave the Republic of South Carolina for exercising its Tenth Amendment right to secede. I call that Northern Aggression. If that offends low information liberals, they can go back to the sixth grade and re-learn the Constitution.

      THEY are the traitors, advocating war against the States (Article III, sec. 3) who dare exercise their sovereignty, and against their peoples who dare exercise their 2A rights. I guess I’m just tired of being nice to stupid bullies. I apologize in advance for any difficulty that adds to our winning the undecided middle.

      Respectfully, Arnie

  5. Robert says:

    I loved the fact that he misspelled “cretin,” myself.

  6. Stranger says:

    Both of the freedmen I knew called the “Civil” War the “the War of Southern Secession.” While I do not know where that came from, or why freed slaves from the Texas Gulf Coast and the Missouri Bootheel would choose to use that term, it pretty much reflects the facts.

    After all, “Civil” for any conflict where people are killed and maimed is pretty silly. It brings to mind a Chip and Dale act; “You shoot me first;” “No you shoot ME first.”

    As for this professor who conflates an island and an idiot, I rank his perspicacity on the low end of the scale.

    Stranger

  7. Thirdpower says:

    Journalism Professor. That explains it all right there. I once had to defend a paper I wrote against charges of plagiarism by a Journalism Prof. because, and I quote, “It seemed too well written for a college student”.

    Even thinking I plagiarized it, he still gave me a “B”.

  8. Akatsukami says:

    Ho-hum. Another rant by a semi-literate tranzie who, on Der Tag, will be whining to the firing squad, “But…but…don’t you know who I am?”

  9. Ceefour says:

    I wonder if the lads at Lexington and concord thought about this before firing the Shot Heard Round the World. I doubt it. When a government becomes like our gov today, its time to think like those guys did back in 1775. This “professor”,who probably presumes to think of himself as a patriotic American, would be considered a Tory back then and look what happened to the Tories.

  10. alanstorm says:

    The fact that this “Cretan” claims to be a journalism professor tells us quite a bit about the state of the American educational system – and none of it is good.

  11. Ecurb says:

    As someone who doesn’t follow Drudge (my news intake is already imbalanced enough), thanks for posting stuff like this.

  12. Brad says:

    A journalism professor? Just goes to support my point that the real heart and soul of the gun control movement lies within the professional press establishment. Without them the gun-control movement would have puttered out decades ago. That fact has rarely been so obvious as in the wake of the Newtown massacre.

  13. HappyWarrior6 says:

    This guy sounds like a “mouth breather” of a journalist.

  14. This dude wants me in a ditch. Why would silly things like “facts” even remotely matter to a psychopath who wants to see the execution of millions of American citizens?

  15. J says:

    The comments on his ratemyprofessor profile are hilarious: http://www.ratemyprofessors.com/ShowRatings.jsp?tid=883043

  16. Jake says:

    Why does this idiot hate people from Crete?

    • J says:

      I asked the same thing. He acknowledges his spelling error, which is a little like the engineers at Chernobyl mentioning that they aren’t very good at math.

  17. HappyWarrior6 says:

    Has anyone checked the comments on this “journalist’s” page? I am quite heartened to read the response. Up to 1285 last I checked, and Swindell is chiming in.

    • Andy B. says:

      This is a bit of a tangent to the discussion, but, I wonder what serious, pragmatic, objective political analysts make of this phenomenon? 1285 respondents?

      What I mean is, we have our formal and informal networks, including this blog, which we use for spreading information almost instantly, or at least overnight. For example, I’ve observed for years that “unscientific” online and phone polls about RKBA issues may start out closely matched in pro/con responses, but quickly swing to the pro-RKBA side, and if allowed to run long enough, will often end up 98 percent or more pro-RKBA. Clearly that’s because we pick up and pass along the news to other pro-RKBA people. Our opponents clearly don’t have that networking, even if they had the numbers.

      That has always interested me, because it demonstrates two things. While the unscientific polls may not demonstrate anything like actual opinion distribution, they do demonstrate motivation on each side of the opinion, and they do demonstrate the existence of a communication network. I would be very interested in professional political pollsters opinions about those factors, and what legislators think about them. Motivation is what translates into votes, not sorta-kinda “feelings” on issues.

      • J says:

        Our roots are much grassier? I spent most of this morning reading all of the comments I did not finish yesterday as well as digging through the profiles of some of the Top Commenters. Very very few have commented at the Gazette’s site before and I would imagine relatively few read it on a regular basis.

        In this particular instance I think it’s that the comments use Facebook rather than Disqus or WP. That alone likely exposes the article to quite a bit more attention as people comment and their friends and family see the comments and then read the articles themselves.

        Interestingly, I don’t see many defending the professor.

  18. Ymal Brucker says:

    In my neighborhood, the Civil War is often called “The Recent Unpleasantness” or “Our Second War of Independence.”

  19. Sigivald says:

    I saw that, and looked him up, and he’s a brain-dead Progressive with a major hate-on about the Tea Party – he was calling ’em traitors and insurrectionists in 2011, if I remember the search results correctly.

    Rational thought? On politics? Not in his bag of tricks, as far as I could tell.

    Self-beclowing.

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