PJ Media

20/20 Mocks Use of Guns for Self-Defense

Last week’s programming on ABC was full of commercials aimed at drawing viewers to a special April 10 edition of 20/20 titled “If I Only Had a Gun.” The promotions described how gun sales were skyrocketing in and around areas where recent mass shootings had occurred, therefore giving the appearance of an honest documentary. But the real premise of the show was 20/20’s contention that private citizens with guns aren’t capable of using those guns effectively, thus 20/20’s website headline: “Carrying a Gun Wouldn’t Necessarily Get You Out of a Shooting.”

In other words, before you get too self-reliant, please give Diane Sawyer 20 minutes to convince you that you’re not capable of defending your own life.

20/20’s hit piece began with various videos of mass public shootings, overlaid with Sawyer describing “rampages in the past few months” which took place “in a mall, in a church, [and] in a home in Pittsburgh where a shooter [fired] off 98 shots in under two minutes.” “No wonder more and more ordinary people are talking about getting a gun to protect themselves,” she added. “But police are saying think about it before you do.”

To back up her assertion that we might not be able to defend ourselves with a gun, Sawyer had two policemen agree to provide firearms training to six university students who had volunteered for it. According to Sawyer, the pre-training “gun experience [of the six ranged] from none at all to more than 100 hours.” Sawyer, an obvious gun novice, included hours spent shooting plastic pellets from Air Soft brand toy guns in her calculations for “gun experience.”

After the students were trained to a level that exceeded what half the states require before issuing a concealed carry license, according to Sawyer, some of the students were unknowingly placed in situations where they had to draw a gun to defend their lives. Joey, the student who had “spent countless hours firing an … Air Soft gun,” was asked to wear his holstered pistol to class to become acquainted with carrying it on his person. Once his class was under way, a gunman barged in and began firing a pistol loaded with paintball bullets at Joey and others in the class.

The video cameras in the classroom showed Joey struggling to get his gun out from under his shirt as Sawyer narrated: “The room is under attack, the instructor is down, a student hit, Joey struggles to get his gun out but it’s stuck in his shirt. He can’t even get it out to aim it.” She was strangely silent on the fact that they had positioned Joey’s holster so that his gun was sitting awkwardly in between his pants and the center of his belly, and that he was wearing an extremely long shirt in order to cover carrying the gun in a place so difficult to conceal.

Undaunted by such details, Sawyer added: “Had this event been real, Joey would have been killed in the first five seconds or there’s the chance the bad guy would have simply taken the gun from him.” How does she know this? Is she omniscient?

Next, Danielle, the student who was a gun novice, was placed in the same situation Joey had been in and she not only got her gun out of the holster but actually shot the classroom intruder with paintball bullets. Yet she was hit in the process, so Sawyer dismissed Danielle’s success by insisting she would’ve been killed in a real attack because of her poor shooting posture (never mind that she might have saved countless lives in the process). Said Sawyer: “A weapon … won’t save you if your body’s in the wrong place,” thus proving that even citizens who draw their weapons and shoot intruders dead still can’t claim to have effectively used a gun for self-defense unless their shoulders were perfectly perpendicular to their target. What a joke.

Throughout this entire episode of 20/20 the Left’s habit of projecting their own fears and ignorance upon the population as a whole was exemplified. From equating shooting toy guns with real gun experience to discrediting Danielle’s success because her split-second reaction didn’t result in perfect body positioning, Sawyer’s foregone conclusion was evident throughout the show.

And the week-long lead-up to “If I Only Had a Gun” on 20/20’s website had been just as biased and just as full of fear and ignorance as Sawyer’s April 10 mantras proved to be. For example, their website was full of useful reminders like: “[There were] more than 50 deaths resulting from mass shootings in the past month alone.”

And just as Joey’s failure to get his gun out from under his shirt seemed to prove Sawyer’s point until you saw how he was made to carry the gun and that his previous “gun experience” had been with Air Soft toys, so too 50 gun-related deaths in a month seem like a lot until we consider how many times guns were used to deter crime during that same period. Had Sawyer and her comrades told the whole story, 20/20’s viewers and readers would’ve known that a gun is used to deter crime in this country 2.5 million times a year, or 208,333 times a month. Which means the 50 deaths from last month are being exploited for some reason while no attention is given to the over 200,000 uses of a gun to deter crime during that same time period.

20/20’s website also warned: “Only six states … require any kind of training before issuing a routine permit to own a gun.” These sorry leftists miss the fact that Americans are offended that even six state legislatures “require” their citizens to ask permission to own a gun.

The bottom line is this, folks: Sawyer and her liberal friends neither understand nor value freedom. They fail to grasp that when George Washington said, “A free people ought to be armed,” he didn’t mean that “a free people (who have passed a firearms training course and applied to their state government for permission to own a gun) ought to be armed.” He meant that the mark of free people would be gun ownership, and this is something the Left cannot tolerate.