Our View: spare us, Bob

Posted: December 4, 2012

We saw it, we heard it, we couldn’t believe it — Bob Costas assuming a most inappropriate soapbox, on NBC’s “Football Night in America” halftime show, to whip up a hue-and-cry for gun control.

Check that, maybe we canbelieve it. The folks at Peacock U were not going to pass up an opportunity to politicize a tragedy — namely the murder-suicide involving Kansas City Chiefs’ linebacker Jovan Belcher and the mother of his child. To do otherwise would run counter to the Rahm Emanuel Never-Let-a-Crisis-Pass dictum.

So, Good Soldier Bob went all in, even to the point of invoking controversial sports scribe Jason Whitlock. That was a sign of definitive inanity, as it was Mr. Whitlock who ended his most recent column with this gem, quoted by Mr. Costas: “If Jovan Belcher didn’t possess a gun, he and Kassandra Perkins would both be alive today.”

And, we suppose, if that certain someone did not possess a knife back in 1994, Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman would still be alive today, too. When is this blame-the-implement-rather-than-the-person lunacy going to stop?

Perhaps never, so we feel obliged to, once again, offer the same statistics in making the same standard argument. As the ever-reliable John Lott, author of “More Guns, Less Crime,” points out, murder rates consistently and predictably climb in places where guns are allegedly “banned.” Washington, D.C., and Chicago come readily to mind.

“The problem,” Mr. Lott says, “is gun bans disarm law-abiding good people, not criminals. With disarmed victims, crime is easier to commit.”

On the flip side, consider these statistics: The 31 states with “concealed-carry” laws, allowing private citizens to “pack” firearms, have, on average, violent crime rates 24 percent lower than states that forbid the practice. Murder and robbery rates in these states are also 19 percent and 39 percent lower, respectively.

What happened Saturday in Kansas City was awful, heartrending. We may never know what prompted Mr. Belcher to do what he did. What we do know is that Messrs. Whitlock and Costas’ far-too-facile reversion to knee-jerk mode offers no explanation whatsoever.