There is nothing funny about murder and banning the Second Amendment is not a laughing matter.
Comedian Michael Ian Black didn’t wait for facts after one innocent American was killed, and several others injured, by a murderer using a handgun in an Atlanta medical facility. He wasted little time in calling for the Second Amendment to be repealed – no ifs, ands or buts.
“Repeal the Second Amendment,” the comedy writer tweeted.
Repeal the Second Amendment. https://t.co/i1qfIPw8sI
— Michael Ian Black (@michaelianblack) May 3, 2023
That was the entire tweet. But in subsequent messages, the comedian made more of his gun control wishes known. He also got something very wrong about who owns and is lawfully buying firearms today.
‘Radical Gun Control’
Black repeated his call for the Second Amendment to be repealed in numerous subsequent back-and-forth responses with commenters. If his goal was not explicit enough, he put it in other terms too.
“Personally I don’t want sensible gun control. I want radical gun control,” he said. ‘Radical’ would certainly describe repealing one of the country’s most foundational rights in the Constitution. A right that is exercised by millions of law-abiding Americans every year, including in Black’s home state of Georgia. Atlanta, in case Black is unaware, ranks as one of America’s most dangerous cities when it comes to violent crime. The murder rate per capita in Georgia’s largest city is even worse than crime-ridden Chicago. The right for law-abiding Americans to purchase and possess commonly-owned firearms includes for purposes of self-defense.
Self-defense, along with recreational shooting and hunting, are the main reasons that led more than 1,011,000 Georgians to pass an FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check (NICS) verification to purchase a gun since 2020, according to NSSF adjusted survey data.
Black hasn’t mentioned what he means by “radical gun control” but implementing stricter limitations on law-abiding Georgians wouldn’t stop evil criminals from committing heinous acts. Local news reporting revealed the murderer had previous run-ins with law enforcement, including for a domestic violence disturbance. None of those instances resulted in a felony conviction that would prohibit an individual from purchasing a handgun.
A Little Comedian Education
Plenty of people hold absurd views about extreme gun control. Plenty of Americans are uninformed about who is lawfully exercising the Second Amendment. No surprise here but count Black among the uninformed.
Responding to a commenter criticizing his call for repealing the Second Amendment, Black said, “So weird that the people most vocally supporting guns are flabby white dudes wearing dubious sunglass choices.”
So weird that I’m not even wearing sunglasses https://t.co/LGBLON7STw pic.twitter.com/5zn4hIZtEJ
— Amy Swearer (@AmySwearer) May 3, 2023
Black is not alone. Mainstream media frequently gets it wrong, often broad-stroking and caricaturing the gun owner as an old, white guy stockpiling guns.
Facts tell a completely different story. Recent industry data showed April was the 45th month in a row of at least 1 million background verifications run by FBI NICS for the purchase of a firearm, and the third-highest April on record. During the two years of heightened COVID pandemic life in America, nearly 40 million firearms were legally purchased by Americans between January of 2020 and December of 2021. That included roughly 10 million first-time buyers. Approximately 40 percent of buyers during that blistering stretch were first-time buyers, and about 30 percent were women.
Black would be even more dumbfounded to learn NSSF surveys showed African Americans purchased firearms in 2020 at a rate of 58 percent higher than 2019. Hispanic Americans did so at a 49 percent higher rate and Asian Americans at a 43 percent higher rate, during the same period. The trend has only continued. NBC News highlighted the rise in African American gun ownership with a report on the National African American Gun Ownership (NAAGA). NAAGA’s president Philip Smith said, “There’s been an awakening.” Smith added, “Having a gun is OK as long as it’s done in the right way.”
The Cut headlined one article, “The New Face of American Gun Ownership – Black women are pushing against the (white, rural, and male) stereotype.” They described gun-buying among African American women, writing, “In recent years, story after story has furthered the narrative that Black women are the fastest-growing group of gun owners in the country.” Black, the comedian, should do some research.
Pictures Worth a Thousand Words
Critics of Black who thought his comment was not only uneducated but sexist as well piled on to show their support for safe and responsible gun ownership.
The Babylon Bee’s Ashley St. Claire went beyond just replying and added a picture of herself in sunglasses holding a Modern Sporting Rifle (MSR). Those are the most popular selling semiautomatic rifles in America with more than 24.4 million in private circulation since 1990. They’re also increasingly the popular firearm choice for women.
“I hate being a flabby white guy with dubious sunglasses,” St. Claire shot back.
Amy Swearer, a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation and Second Amendment supporter, posted several pics in response to Black, including of her practicing at a shooting range. “So weird that I’m not even wearing sunglasses,” Swearer said.
Still another women gun owner wearing eyes and ears protection and shooting at an outdoor range put it simply for Black. “Gun rights are women’s rights!” There were no shortage of additional of examples of women and minority gun owners clapping back at Black’s sexist and bigoted tweet.
Michael Ian Black and his closed-minded views on gun rights and gun ownership in America today are far too common, with activists and talking heads preferring to limit rights instead of holding criminals accountable for their crimes.
The Second Amendment is colorblind and for all law-abiding Americans. That’s no laughing matter.
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This story is part of the Second Amendment Foundation’s Investigative Journalism Project and is published here with their permission.
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