Monday, January 10, 2005

Our Pals at 60 MINUTES...

I didn't watch 60 MINUTES last night, which is good, since my blood pressure probably couldn't stand it. The short story is they featured Tom Diaz from the Violence Policy Center slamming the .50 caliber Barrett.

Ronnie Barrett — The Michael Bane Blog MAN OF THE YEAR for 2004 — held his own and once again proved he is the best person from the firearms industry in front of the hot lights.

This is the commentary from NSSF Bullet Points, which should be posted on their site tomorrow:

"Investigative" Reporting Show Shows Its Bias. . . Reporter Ed Bradley on Sunday's 60 Minutes television show at least twice avoided opportunities to assure Americans that the mandatory FBI criminal background check required before any retail purchase of a firearm is one of the ways to prevent terrorists from buying guns in America. That's true whether a dealer is selling guns at a gun show or in a store. In a story prompted by California's outlawing future purchases of .50 BMG rifles, Bradley broadcast hype and misinformation from gun prohibitionist Tom Diaz of the Violence Policy Center to create a scare about attacks on airplanes and chemical storage facilities that have never occurred. Diaz is hoping to repeat in other states California's ban on .50 caliber rifles by promoting their image as a terrorist tool. Rifle manufacturer Ronnie Barrett calls such hype an attempt to precipitate an attack. Indeed, since shortly after terrorists struck with box cutters on September 11, 2001, the VPC Web site discussion of .50 calibers outlines ways to attack aircraft and other vulnerable targets, discussing the kind of ammunition to be used and even supplying maps indicating where tank farm storage of petroleum and dangerous chemicals can be located by terrorists or other deranged persons. Then, the 60 Minutes story concluded with a boldly false assertion from Diaz when Bradley asked, "Aren't records kept when a gun is sold?" "The answer is no!" Diaz falsely asserted in the broadcast, despite the fact that law enforcement routinely tracks gun ownership by using a permanent record-keeping system on retail gun sales begun in 1968. Bradley and the CBS producers responsible for the segment are being asked by NSSF to broadcast a correction to their story.

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