Use this search box to find articles that have run in our newspapers over the last several years.

Media exploits

Date: 2/1/2013

Our nation was deeply saddened by the horrific news of the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

As a result some say we need to do something about gun laws. No one wants guns to end up in the hands of criminals or people with mental health issues. Our first response should be we must do a better job our children, schools, the Constitution and our God-given right to defend ourselves?

We all want to ensure our children and schools are safe, but why has a ban on military-style assault weapons become the focus of the media, our president, vice president and politicians, when handguns were used?

Some ask, "Why does anyone need a military-style assault weapon for hunting or sport shooting?" If you are unfamiliar with guns, this is a reasonable question.

Many confuse an AR 15 or Bushmaster .223 caliber hunting rifle with a military M16? The term "military-style assault weapon" refers to its cosmetics and design. It is a hunting rifle.

Would anyone who realized that ask, "Why does anyone need a hunting rifle to go hunting?" You might ask, "Why does anyone need a hunting rifle that looks like a military weapon?" Most rifles owe their design to military weapon research and development and our citizen soldiers who hunt like the design and functionality.

A semi-automatic rifle releases the spent cartridge automatically and loads the next bullet into the chamber. You must pull the trigger each time to fire a single small bullet, same as any revolver, hunting rifle or handgun. I served in the U.S. Army. I can tell you they are not the same weapon. A semi-automatic weapon also protects people and saves lives. Single-shot rifles require you to reload and are not much help if you are facing multiple criminals, or if your first shot misses defending yourself or while hunting.

We are being misled and manipulated by politicians and the media who continue to mislabel this weapon they are seeking to ban. The question should be, "Why are you trying to ban a hunting rifle?"

Beware of any government or media which exploits a tragedy or crisis and uses deceit to mislead the public in an attempt to unarm its citizens, or prevents law-abiding citizens from protecting themselves, their property or others, and fails to protect our citizens or military.

The media creates more fear among people by sensationalizing news stories.

While no one can fault the media for not reporting all details correctly in the initial hours after the Sandy Hook shooting, I question why media websites had stories posted immediately, such as "The Top 10 Mass Shootings in America." This sensationalized the story and instilled more fear in our traumatized nation, still in shock on one of the darkest days in American history, the horrific and senseless killing of children.

On Dec. 15, 24 hours later, MSNBC reported federal and state officials confirmed 4 handguns were used. See That report was false.

Adding to our fear is the realization our schools are publicized gun free zones, our children are sitting ducks, and our leaders are pushing proposals that will not make us anyone safer. We could protect our schools beginning today by providing real security, such as having a police officer in the building, or in a car parked outside or in a nearby community police station.

In a dangerous and misleading bait and switch tactic, the media and some politicians have exploited the general public's lack of knowledge that a military-style rifle is a hunting rifle made to look like a military assault weapon, pushed our emotional buttons in their assault to ban on God-given right to defend ourselves.

Dan Allie