search
top

The Media are Suckers? You Don’t Say

Forgive the lack of posting. Very busy. John Lott has an article in The Hill about “How gun control advocates play the mainstream media for suckers.” It’s good that an outlet like The Hill chose to run this:

Among police, firearms violations occur at a rate of 6.9 per 100,000 officers. For Florida permit holders, the rate is only 0.31 per 100,000. Most of these violations were trivial offenses, such as forgetting one’s permit.

The data are similar in other states.

The media is doing an injustice by inaccurately reporting about an issue with such immediate relevance to public safety

John Lott has done a lot of good work on behalf of the issue. I only wish he had maintained the position as more of a detached academic, rather than embracing outright pro-gun advocacy. Not that advocacy doesn’t have its place, but our opponents are far better at passing off activists as detached academics than we are. Our side could stand to up our game here.

14 Responses to “The Media are Suckers? You Don’t Say”

  1. Whetherman says:

    “How gun control advocates play the mainstream media for suckers.”

    I just want to point out that a complaint in all camps (including those on the left) is that the MSM routinely grants credibility to issue-spokespeople who have none. All “news” purveyors are just looking for someone to quote, to give an appearance of “balance.” And, sometimes, they really are that ignorant that they don’t know the spokespeople they find are cuckoos. The cuckoos of course love it, and try to leverage it to more credibility.

  2. boardsnbikes says:

    Considering all the vitriol Lott has received, much of it personal I’m sure, from both academics and gun-control advocates, I would think it hard for him to remain a neutral, detached academic.

  3. Andy Barniskis says:

    “I only wish he had maintained the position as more of a detached academic, rather than embracing outright pro-gun advocacy.”

    I addressed the problems I see with John Lott in a comment I made last summer.

    I think there is less of a problem with an academic aligning with a position on an issue, than aligning with a political party as a raw partisan mercenary.

    In the incident I cited in last summer’s comment, I had a run-in with Lott because he was shilling for an anti-gun Republican gubernatorial candidate, about whom he appaeared to know or care nothing except that he was a Republican.

    If you check out the Wikipedia article on Lott, it appears the positions he has taken in his studies of a variety of issues have pretty consistently aligned with an ideology, rather than with science. To believe that can be true with 100 percent of issues, requires being a True Believer in that ideology, indeed, given that most of the studied issues have no real correlation with each other.

    Ever since I first realized Lott’s bogus status as an academic, I have resented what he did, because for a long time I depended on his studies relative to guns for making my public arguments in support of gun rights. When I became aware he was not just an ideological academic, but a supporter of that ideology only in support of a political party, I was left with big blank spots where I once thought I had good ammunition. For my own credibility, I cannot cite his work anymore.

    • Jamfish says:

      “For my own credibility, I cannot cite his work anymore.”

      Ditto… on all that.

  4. Zundfolge says:

    Are they really “suckers” if they’re not just willing to put forward the anti’s lies but eager?

    • Brad says:

      Bingo!

      I contend that not only is the MSM the biggest cheerleaders of the Gun Control Movement, but that also for all practical political purposes the MSM *is* the Gun Control Movement.

  5. Whetherman says:

    “Among police, firearms violations occur at a rate of 6.9 per 100,000 officers. For Florida permit holders, the rate is only 0.31 per 100,000.”

    I wish Lott was credible, because that’s a statistic I’d love to shout from the house-tops; more for what it tells us about the police, than what it tells us about permit-holders.

    That said, I think there is a lot buried in Lott’s police v. permit holders statistic that needs closer inspection, probably definitions-wise.

    I just encountered a column by a hard-leftist, that opined that if people really wanted to control gun violence, they would be looking at the police and leaving the man-on-the-street alone.

  6. Ian Argent says:

    Lott irretrievably blotted his copybook when he resorted to using a sockpuppet identity.

    • Sadly, true. He was trying to goose book sales. His work’s quality was not really disputed. They hunted for something to use.

      • Ian Argent says:

        There are some lines one does not cross, and once crossed, cannot be uncrossed.

      • Whetherman says:

        “His work’s quality was not really disputed.”

        As I recall, it was, but since I wanted to believe his version of reality (about guns, anyway), I never dwelled on things like disputed methodologies and sources.

        Not to go off on too much of a tangent, but I had professors who later sacrificed their academic reputations by becoming “ambulance chasers” (e.g., as “expert witnesses”) whose opinions were those of whoever hired them. They became despised and ridiculed by their colleagues, but apparently it paid better than academia, as soon as they were tenured.

        For myself, some years ago I started saying “I am so tired of bullshit, I’m even tired of our own bullshit,” and it still applies.

      • Patrick Henry, the 2nd says:

        His work’s quality was not really disputed.

        And that’s all I care about. None of this other stuff about his ideology or other irrelevant issues.

        I will continue to cite his work.

  7. Fûz says:

    “our opponents are far better at passing off activists as detached academics than we are”

    muy bien dicho

top