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Brokaw Demands ‘National Dialogue’ on Gun Control

Appearing on Monday’s Today, former NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw predictably used the tragic shooting in Las Vegas as an excuse to push the gun control agenda even as the police were still in the early stages of the investigation. “Well, I think this is time for a national dialogue that we can have in a calm and reasoned way in which the country can figure out how come we have so many mass shootings in this country,” the special correspondent proclaimed.

 
Discussing the type of weapon shooter Stephen Paddock used to launch the heinous attack, Brokaw ranted: “Where did he get that kind of a gun? You can now get an AR-15, which is a modification of a military weapon….Now they’ve got racks of these adapted military weapons.” He recounted how “Stan McChrystal, who led our forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, said we ought not to be selling these kinds of weapons to the American civilian population. They’re designed to do one thing, which is to kill people.”

He reiterated that “we need to have that kind of a dialogue in this country” and told viewers: “No other western nation has the number of gun deaths that we have in America, and we need to talk about it.”

Brokaw lamented: “So we can’t have that conversation because it immediately becomes so emotional between the gun owners of the America, who are protected by the NRA, and other people who are saying there ought to be a more reasonable middle ground.” Notice how he set up the debate as being gun owners versus “reasonable” people.

Later in the show, Brokaw again brought the conversation back to gun control:

What kind of weapons did he have and where did he get them? When we were listening to those rounds that were being fired, he was on full auto. That’s supposed to be an illegal weapon for a civilian. The AR-15 is also a very deadly weapon, but it’s supposed to fire just single shots as you pull the trigger. So that’s going to be an important part of this post-shooting discussion that we have to have in this country, what’s available.

I mean, in the last 20 years or so, the enormous amount of weapons that are available out there to people for whatever reason. That they can walk into the store, they get a quick check, and then they can buy something that is a modified military weapon of some kind. That’s got to be a discussion that we’re gonna have.
 
In fact, fully automatic weapons are illegal in the U.S., with the rare exception of someone having a license only granted by the Bureaus of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.

Co-host Matt Lauer chimed in: “…we put a graphic up of some of the other mass shootings, the most horrific mass shootings in this country….And by the way, ‘mass shooting’ is defined as – what is it? Four people, I think, killed is a mass shooting. And those happen almost every day in this country.” Brokaw replied: “They do happen every day, as a matter of fact, Matt….Now it’s exploded across the country where, as you say, we’re not always stunned when we hear there’s been another mass shooting.”

ABC’s Good Morning America immediately used the violence to attack the NRA and Republicans.

MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle ranted that the “lack of gun regulation” in the country was “insane.”

Here are excerpts of the October 2 coverage:

8:16 AM ET

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: And as we bring Tom Brokaw in, I mean one thing we do know about this man, Stephen Paddock, here’s somebody who was looking to inflict maximum damage from a high vantage point, high-powered automatic weapon. And we’ve seen scores killed, innocently standing there and unable to go anywhere.

TOM BROKAW: Well, I think this is time for a national dialogue that we can have in a calm and reasoned way in which the country can figure out how come we have so many mass shootings in this country. Las Vegas, Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Columbine, many more people were killed in those than in the two terrorist attacks that we had in San Bernadino and Orlando, which understandably got us so aroused about the threat of terrorism. You listen to those weapons, they’re on full auto at that point.

Where did he get that kind of a gun? You can now get an AR-15, which is a modification of a military weapon, an M-1, but it’s supposed to be a single shot at a time, but it has a big capacity. I go to a gun store in Montana, I’ve owned guns all my life, and it used to have mostly 30/30s and high-powered sporting rifles. Now they’ve got racks of these adapted military weapons. Stan McChrystal, who led our forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, said we ought not to be selling these kinds of weapons to the American civilian population. They’re designed to do one thing, which is to kill people, and they can be adapted.

So we need to have that kind of a dialogue in this country. No other western nation has the number of gun deaths that we have in America, and we need to talk about it.

MATT LAUER: And wait until we hear what was in that room. Law enforcement has already said…

BROKAW: What else he had.

LAUER: …there wasn’t just this one weapon, there were other weapons there. We have no idea how many magazines filled with rounds he had in that room. But again, you get a duffel bag, you get a suitcase, you get a golf bag, you walk into a hotel, it’s unbelievable what you can take in.

BROKAW: And it’s amazing what you can buy on the market by the way, whether it’s at a gun show or illegally from other people. So we can’t have that conversation because it immediately becomes so emotional between the gun owners of the America, who are protected by the NRA, and other people who are saying there ought to be a more reasonable middle ground. I’m a gun owner, I’ve got a closet full of them in Montana. I don’t have one of those AR-15s, I don’t need it because I’m not going to be shooting that kind of thing. But almost all my friends out there now have that kind of a weapon.

9:22 AM ET

GUTHRIE: Tom, you just mentioned that all the time you were at the Today show, you covered exactly one mass shooting. And unfortunately, it’s become a way of life.

BROKAW: And that one was in Egypt, when President Sadat was shot. I think that there are some obvious things we need to know more about. What kind of weapons did he have and where did he get them? When we were listening to those rounds that were being fired, he was on full auto. That’s supposed to be an illegal weapon for a civilian. The AR-15 is also a very deadly weapon, but it’s supposed to fire just single shots as you pull the trigger. So that’s going to be an important part of this post-shooting discussion that we have to have in this country, what’s available.

I mean, in the last 20 years or so, the enormous amount of weapons that are available out there to people for whatever reason. That they can walk into the store, they get a quick check, and then they can buy something that is a modified military weapon of some kind. That’s got to be a discussion that we’re gonna have. And the larger discussion is, where are we at this stage in our lives in this civilized country that we are now so accustomed to hearing about mass shootings? Whether it’s Columbine or whether it’s Sandy Hook, there have been many more people killed in these domestic mass shootings than in the terrorist attacks in San Bernandino and Orlando, as desperate as they were.

LAUER: And it’s such a valid point, Tom, because a little while ago, we put a graphic up of some of the other mass shootings, the most horrific mass shootings in this country. And you almost find yourself looking at that graphic and saying, “Oh, Orlando, that was 49 people.” And it shouldn’t be that way. We should – these things should be seared in our minds, they should be numbers that are just intolerable to everyone. And by the way, “mass shooting” is defined as – what is it? Four people, I think, killed is a mass shooting. And those happen almost every day in this country.

BROKAW: They do happen every day, as a matter of fact, Matt. And when you look at the number of people who are wounded in gun shooting accidents or killed in an accidental shooting, you know, it’s five or six every day that are going on like that across the country. So we need to have that debate. And you know, I speak as a sportsman who’s got guns. I spend a lot of my time in the west, I grew up in South Dakota, and the first thing I got when I was 12 years old, was my first rifle. I always remember that moment. But there was not this kind of mayhem going on at that time. Everybody had a kind of course on how to learn how to shoot safely, you worked with your father, you know, you went out and did sporting things. Now it’s exploded across the country where, as you say, we’re not always stunned when we hear there’s been another mass shooting.

(First reported by mrcNewsBusters)   https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/kyle-drennen/2017/10/02/brokaw-demands-national-dialogue-gun-control-enormous-amount  (October 2, 2017)

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