Gersh Kuntzman probably thought he was onto something. In the wake of the tragedy in Orlando, he decided to write a story about what it’s like to shoot an AR-15. Sounds like an interesting story, right?
Well, unfortunately, Kuntzman reported his experiences by saying it felt like a “bazooka” and that the experience gave him a case of “temporary post-traumatic stress disorder.”
Understandably, he got some backlash. Now, he’s trying to argue that saying mean things to him in an email is censorship or something:
Besides, if masculinity is defined by the power to commit violence on a wide scale, I proudly choose femininity. At one time, “being a man” meant standing up for what you believe in — and against injustice. By that definition, we need more real men in power taking on bullies like the NRA, which seeks to bolster the Second Amendment by shutting down opponents’ right to the First. We can’t even debate guns in this country, thanks to the gun lobby.
No one is stopping Kuntzman from speaking. However, when you speak, people have a tendency to use their own First Amendment rights to lash out. The First Amendment is a two-way street.
However, as with the Second Amendment, the First comes with some responsibilities.
This is particularly true for journalists. They have an obligation to not misrepresent the people they quote. Oh, it happens all the time, but it’s not supposed to.
Kuntzman’s original report appears to have blatantly misconstrued what the gun dealer said.
Following his original report’s publication, the gun shop he visited posted on Facebook saying:
To our knowledge we did not know that Mr. Kuntzman would completely turn things around and make our establishment look like one of anti-gun advocates. …
I can assure everyone that we do not support mental health screenings like they do in Europe and we don’t think that government officials should take away guns from people as it was portrayed in the article.
When it comes to the Second Amendment, there will always be some who abuse the right. Omar Mateen was one of those, unfortunately.
Gersh Kuntzman abused the First by presenting a gun store as being on his side, and then he doubled down by claiming those who have insulted him are interfering with his freedom of speech.
If that’s violating his First Amendment rights, then what does it say about Kuntzman that he called for a music legend to “shut up” and to go away?
What’s good for thee is good for me, kind of like guns. So grow some thicker skin. Not only will it help with AR-15 recoil, but it might keep you from whining over insults.