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Editor Is Fired, But Not Silenced, Over The NRA

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Editor Is Fired, But Not Silenced, Over The NRA

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Five days after the shootings in San Bernardino, California, Jan Larson McLaughlin sat down in her home office on her day off and wrote her weekly editorial for the Sentinel-Tribune, circulation 9,000, in Bowling Green, Ohio.

McLaughlin has worked for the newspaper for 31 years, the past 2 1/2 as editor-in-chief. She usually writes her editorial in the newsroom, but this one required special care. She was taking on the National Rifle Association, and she was doing it in Ohio.

Her editorial began: “It is time for reasonable gun owners to take back control of the association that supposedly represents them.

“We as a nation are still mourning one mass shooting when the next occurs. Yet the NRA refuses to discuss any type of gun control, any form of background checks, any type of study that might lead to some answers.

“Instead, when legislators consider measures to reduce gun deaths, the NRA and its tentacle groups assign them failing grades and label them as anti-gun.”

She then focused on the Buckeye Firearms Association for its “blasted criticism” of Bowling Green State University faculty members who had written to state Rep. Tim Brown asking that he not support legislation to allow concealed carry of firearms on Ohio college campuses. Brown voted for it.

The gun group used the Freedom of Information Act to obtain the list of faculty members who had written to Brown. It published their names and email addresses, singling out geology professor James Evans for special retribution by publishing his photo, too, because he called the NRA a “terrorist organization” in his email to Brown. McLaughlin described the rush of threatening emails to Evans from members of the firearms association. (Evans confirmed this in an interview Tuesday.)

After defending the faculty members, McLaughlin ended her editorial with a plea:

“We’ve tried arming every citizen who is so inclined. It hasn’t solved the problem. So let’s look for other solutions, ones that reasonable gun owners can support. But that will mean responsible gun owners are first going to have to take back control of their national organization, which seems more concerned about the gun industry than the average gun owner.”

Early the next morning, McLaughlin sent her editorial to Publisher Karmen Concannon, whose parents own the broadsheet, which publishes Monday through Saturday. McLaughlin also sent the editorial to three of her six staff writers. This is her practice in the small newsroom so that they can catch errors and offer criticism.

McLaughlin described what happened next: That Tuesday evening, the publisher told her she had killed the editorial, with little explanation. On Wednesday, the six staff writers submitted a letter to Concannon, asking her to reconsider. She refused to read it.

The next day, McLaughlin walked into the publisher’s office, asking for an explanation, but Concannon said she didn’t owe her one.

The following Monday morning, Concannon told McLaughlin she was fired and ordered her to surrender her keys before being escorted out of the building. She was allowed to return to the newsroom that evening to empty her desk.

McLaughlin’s termination letter stated that she was fired for insubordination — for doing what she always does, which is to share her editorial with staff writers. The publisher’s explanation doesn’t pass the straight-face test, which may be why Concannon has refused multiple requests for interviews.

Hours after McLaughlin’s firing, my Gmail and Facebook inboxes began filling with messages from upset readers and fellow journalists. Many McLaughlin supporters tweeted the hashtag “istandwithjan.” Someone, she doesn’t know who, leaked the killed editorial, bringing it back to life on social media and, later, on the Toledo Blade‘s website.

You could reasonably ask, “Why should I care what happened at a small-town newspaper in Ohio?”

I suggest a different question: How often is this happening in our communities?

Earlier this month, it was great to see the front-page editorial in The New York Times under the headline “The Gun Epidemic.” Lots of policymakers surely saw it, but most Americans — most constituents — don’t read The New York Times.

Editorials such as McLaughlin’s matter because they reach the rest of America and can embolden citizens to pressure elected officials for gun law reform. Silencing the Jan Larson McLaughlins in this country emboldens only the NRA.

On Tuesday, McLaughlin was still reeling.

“I’m still kind of stunned,” she said. “I love the Sentinel-Tribune. I care about the staff. This is all I’ve ever wanted to do.”

On Wednesday, she heard there were plans for a rally to protest her firing. Such outpouring of community support moves her. “It feels good that people recognize the value of the work of the Sentinel-Tribune.”

Still, it worries her, too. “I don’t want people to cancel their subscriptions,” she said. “Our writers make so little, and they work so hard. I don’t want them to lose their jobs.”

McLaughlin said that before she left the building, the publisher offered her a severance package.

For her 31 years of service, the paper was willing to pay Jan Larson McLaughlin $5,000 — but only if she agreed not to talk about what had happened.

To the benefit of all of us, she declined.

Connie Schultz is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist. She is the author of two books, including …and His Lovely Wife, which chronicled the successful race of her husband, Sherrod Brown, for the U.S. Senate. To find out more about Connie Schultz (con.schultz@yahoo.com) and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com. COPYRIGHT 2015 CREATORS.COM

File photo: Activists hold a protest and vigil against gun violence on the third anniversary of the Sandy Hook mass shooting, outside the National Rifle Association (NRA) headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia December 14, 2015.  REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

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Connie Schultz

Connie Schultz is a nationally syndicated columnist for Creators Syndicated. Schultz won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for commentary and was a finalist for the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for feature writing. She has also published two books: Life Happens: And Other Unavoidable Truths -- a collection of her previously published columns -- and ...and His Lovely Wife: A Memoir from the Woman Beside the Man, which chronicled her experiences on the campaign trail with her husband, Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown.

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144 Comments

  1. ray December 16, 2015

    what happened to that liberal media the right is always talking about?

    Reply
    1. Daniel Jones December 16, 2015

      Well, Ray, it published this article..

      That said, even the Memo isn’t Liberal the way the conservatives imply.. namely, Lying Left Liberal.

      The Memo is progressive to a fault, but it doesn’t hesitate to call out lefties when they misbehave themselves.

      The Looney Left Label the right wing made up is like Trump’s accusing the media for “unfairly” airing when he makes an ass of himself. It’s even used the same way, as any story calling out the Right Wingnuts gets tarred with the liberal brush–even if it’s in a right wing publication or program.

      Reply
      1. Eleanore Whitaker December 17, 2015

        YOu want to talk misbehavior? Start with the last 5 CONservative GOP presidents and 3 GOP Speakers of the House who had to resign.

        The looneys of the right are extremists trying to ram their phony butt Christianity down everyone’s throats, desperate to create the monopolies in business the Robber Barons of the 1800s enjoyed and turning the US labor force into slavery of the south.

        Try again hot shot. Your CON men have alienated more than 80% of the population with your lying, deceitful, BS. What goes up always comes down…Your Tea Party extremists won’t take over our government on OUR tax dollars. You don’t like the government of the people, for the people, BY the people, that’s why you needed suck up SC CONmen to insure you could buy the government you and only you want. Get a life loser boy.

        Reply
      2. ray December 17, 2015

        That’s why I read it. Because it is honest.

        Reply
    2. Eleanore Whitaker December 17, 2015

      There is NO liberal media. The Big Six media billionaires are all ultra conservatives. This was the power freak plot the right has always dreamed of…ownership of all businesses, the media and now if they get their way, the government. Feudalism will loook like heaven when they are done.

      Reply
        1. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

          While I disagree with Eleanore and she and I have argued before, you need to clean up your posts if you want to change the way people think. Name calling is a childish last resort of fools.

          Reply
  2. Bosda December 17, 2015

    Given that newspapers are dying, this particular issue is a tempest in a teapot.

    Reply
    1. Eleanore Whitaker December 17, 2015

      Newspaper are not dying. Not from the looks of all of the Wall Street cock roaches I see boarding NY City buses with WSJ under their arms.

      The NRA wants the right to call every man, woman and child in the US “militia” when that word has nothing to do with what the NRA really wants…murder that is acceptable and every street in the US looking like Dodge City.

      No man needs to own a weapon that can fire multiple rounds in seconds on public sreets in public places. Not unless they are doing precisely what they say they hate most: creating a police state with a bunch of mindless belligerent angry freaks in control of everyone.

      The NRA is a piece of cow dung that is mostly comprised of morons who live for the sound of gunfire as much as a heroin addict lives for their next fix.

      Reply
      1. Bosda December 17, 2015

        Newspaper have been dying for decades.
        They will soon go the way of the Pony Express, or carrier pigeons, as a means of communication.

        Reply
        1. Eleanore Whitaker December 17, 2015

          I respectfully disagree..Here’s why. If all communication depends on the same internet or wiring communication, the only remaining communincation is newspapers.

          I know this because on 9/11, my state (NJ) lost all cell tower power and all media communication since most of the broadcasting was done from NY City in the very skyscrapers that were blasted into oblivion by terrorists.

          Then, we had SuperStorm Sandy that had many in the Metro area without power for 2 or more weeks. Ever try to live without electricity for two or more weeks? Some in the hardest hit areas had no electricity for over 2 months. YOu bet newspapers were important.

          Until some source of autonomous energy is found to produce limitless, disaster proof power, newspapers will continue to be the only source of news.

          Reply
          1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

            It must be a real bytch for you to be without electricity, huh bytch? No ice cubes for your drinks. I guess that means you have to drink it straight from the bottle. But then, you do that anyway, don’t you?

            Reply
          2. Eleanore Whitaker December 17, 2015

            I have plenty of power. I bet you up on every moron post you keep trying to impress others with. Sorry, unlike you I don’t get arrested for DUI or DUI manslaughter. Try again hot shot…You are down for the count. How many times did you think you’d get away with boozing and driving before you lost your driving privileges? Does explain why you sit on your butt all day every day and post BS.

            Reply
          3. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

            The only “power” you have is in the fantasy land induced by your drunken stupor. Feel free to review your post when you sober up and fix all the problems with it, you illiterate old bag.

            Reply
          4. Eleanore Whitaker December 18, 2015

            A cockroach like you would know all about booze. That’s why you post from prison and I don’t. Sorry…I don’t need a crutch like you do to articulate truth and facts. A loser like you can’t wipe your own butt without Mommy’s help.

            The rest of us are gainfully occupied pigface and don’t waste our lives on hate like you pigs of the right do. Get a life loser. Getter yet, get a job so you won’t obsess over posting your life away.

            Reply
          5. Buck Ofama December 18, 2015

            I know all about the EFFECTS of booze by watching you post, you filthy old hag.

            Reply
          6. Eleanore Whitaker December 18, 2015

            And precisely how, you crazy batshit frig do you “watch” me post? Sorry pig face…you need to move that trailer sized butt and break a sweat. By the time you type one sentence, I’ve written half a dozen tech articles for my online clients. Now, jerkoff…can you drop dead? Or is that too much work for a lazyass like you?

            Reply
          7. Buck Ofama December 19, 2015

            I’m doing it now, dipshit.

            Reply
          8. Insinnergy December 17, 2015

            Ahh another sockpuppet.
            Too much heat on your old account name, coward?

            Reply
          9. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

            FUB. Feel free to say that to my face, you gutless punk.

            Reply
      2. Independent1 December 17, 2015

        And Dodge city being a gun-toting place was a myth of class B movies. Fact is, back in those days Americans realized the 2nd Amendment did not give the average citizen any rights whatsoever; that it was only citizens involved in an actual militia that had the “right” to be armed.

        Gun-slingers back in those days were required by the sheriffs of Dodge and other “wild-west” cities to check their guns on entering town, just like people check their hats and coats when entering places like dance halls.

        Reply
        1. David December 17, 2015

          Your facts regarding the 2nd Amendment and the militia are wrong. But, you already know that. Accordingly, you are a liar!

          Reply
          1. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Sorry, I don’t want to hear about your mentally retarded 2-year old’s nonsense that militia applies to everybody. Only someone as mentally retarded as yourself would even entertain such a preposterous notion. The term militia clearly means military related which in no way encompasses the entire population!!

            Reply
          2. David December 17, 2015

            Really? I guess Madison, Jefferson, SCOTUS decisions, and the US Code are “mentally retarded”. DA
            Can you read and comprehend?

            Reply
          3. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            The fact that when Madison wrote the 2nd Amendment America had no standing army and therefore it was edicted that every able-bodied citizen had to be willing to take up arms and serve in a call-up army (a militia) to defend the nation – does not mean in any way that you can now turn the definition of militia around and suggest that the word militia (devoid of being related to an army) can be used to define all American citizens.

            As I said in the beginning that only a mentally retarded 2 year-old would assume such a thing. And the only SCOTUS decision that has ever suggested such a thing has been the bastardization of the 2nd Amendment in 2008 by today’s SCOTUS with 5 justices bought and paid for by the NRA.

            Reply
          4. David December 17, 2015

            Hey DS!! Look up the definition of the word in the US Code. All SCOTUS decisions on this matter have been along this line.

            Reply
          5. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Sorry, not interested. And idiots like you can create the US Code, and if it suggests in reality that militia means all the people, then an idiot such as yourself penned that idiot code.

            My guess is, that like so many right-wingers, you’re taking the wording in the US Code out of context, and where it talks about a militia applying to all the people, is in a section of the code which is talking about military related service to begin with. So, it’s probably a portion of the US Code attributable to the defense department, which means that anyone with brains would understand that relating a militia to all the people, is only in the context of operating a military type activity in the first place.

            Of course you mentally retarded right-wingers have no context to understand that a lot of regulations in our government are superseded by what portion of the government we’re talking about and you can’t simply take sections of their regulations of context and assume they apply to everyone in the nation.

            Reply
          6. David December 17, 2015

            Lol…Now you are grabbing for straws as your argument is flushed down the toilet. Ha ha!

            Reply
          7. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Yeah, so you’re trying to tell me that virtually every judicial department in our government understood for over 200 years that the 2nd Amendment applied to only military related service, and all those judges overlooked this US code suggesting it applied to all the people for over 200 years, and it’s only you smart asses today who have figured this out?? That for decades, sheriffs across the nation forced gunslingers to check their guns and were able to enforce far stricter gun control than we see today, because no one but an idiot like you understood that militia meant everyone?? And this interpretation was enforced for over 200 years until 5 idiots in SCOTUS screwed everything up???
            You’ve got your head up your butt so far you can’t see the light of day worthless!!!

            Reply
          8. David December 17, 2015

            “…virtually every judicial department…”? Who TF are you talking about? Cite case law for me. You can’t because you are an ignorant, lying, fool who has now been exposed. Hurts doesn’t?

            Reply
          9. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Are you calling ex Justice John Paul Stevens a liar again?? I’ve posted this for you before – are you so mentally retarded you can’t even absorb some basic facts???

            From the Washington Post:

            For more than 200 years following the adoption of that amendment, federal judges uniformly understood that the right protected by that text was limited in two ways: First, it applied only to keeping and bearing arms for military purposes, and second, while it limited the power of the federal government, it did not impose any limit whatsoever on the power of states or local governments to regulate the ownership or use of firearms. Thus, in United States v. Miller, decided in 1939, the court unanimously held that Congress could prohibit the possession of a sawed-off shotgun because that sort of weapon had no reasonable relation to the preservation or efficiency of a “well regulated Militia.”

            https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-five-extra-words-that-can-fix-the-second-amendment/2014/04/11/f8a19578-b8fa-11e3-96ae-f2c36d2b1245_story.html

            Reply
          10. David December 17, 2015

            Again, you said every judicial department. Who are you referring to? Cite case law. You can’t. I know you can’t DA because I am an attorney and I have briefed this issue.

            Reply
          11. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Goodbye, you just blew all semblance of your credibility!!!

            Reply
          12. David December 17, 2015

            Truth destroyed you!

            Reply
          13. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Truth?? You don’t even know the meaning of the word.

            Reply
          14. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

            Question is , if David is an attorney he has a valid question. Cite case law.

            Reply
          15. Otto Greif December 17, 2015

            US v. Miller indicates there is a 2nd Amendment right to what liberals refer to as “assault rifles”.

            Reply
          16. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Note that Stevens says that for 200 years it was understood that the 2nd Amendment did not limit the right for state and local governments to control guns. Which is why sheriffs in wild-west towns always edicted that gunslingers had to check their guns. Wild west shoot-outs in western towns are nothing more than a myth of Class B movies.

            Reply
          17. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

            David, clean up your posts. Independent1 is smart, I’ve posted with her, him before. You will look better by leaving out the name calling and counter Independents posts with facts. Independents facts are skewed.

            Reply
          18. David December 17, 2015

            Leadville you are right. “Be quick to think. Slow to speak and slow to anger.” 10 USC 311 defines “militia” as ‘All able bodied males over 17.’ The definition in the late 1700’s was able bodied men. It has nothing to do with the military.

            Reply
          19. leadvillexp December 18, 2015

            I still find it hard not to name call or be angry at people but I try. I write senators and other legislators some of which I can’t stand but try to be polite. We need facts and fight them on their terms. We need to be better and smarter than them and win!

            Reply
          20. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

            You read it wrong. Understand the language. It reads “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” It clearly says the right of the people to keep and bear arms. Our forefathers had just come off from a revolution against their government, Great Britain and wanted to prevent a new government from doing the same thing, disarming the people. they had a foresight we seem to have lost in the name of safety. Those that give up their rights in the name of safety get neither.

            Reply
        2. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

          You need to study the wording of the Bill of Rights. Not to change the subject, but do you believe you are entitled to Social Security? Read again. Look up Flemming v. Nestor. No one is guaranteed Social Security. The government can spend it any way it wants. I say this to show how the average citizen doesn’t understand how our government has skewed the way we look at our rights. Don’t fall for the militia thing. It also has the people have the right.

          Reply
      3. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

        If you read my other post you would see how ignorant you appear. I know you are smart, and want a good discussion. Don’t go down to their level and yes I am the NRA.

        Reply
  3. Eleanore Whitaker December 17, 2015

    Ever notice how the NRA bastardizes the 2nd Amendment and then tramples the right to the 1st Amendment to get their way? Do you like “their way?” Do you like that every US school today has to train children how to protect themselves from a gunMAN entering their classroom? Do you enjoy the sight of guns in your grocery stores, your libraries, your streets?

    Face facts. What the gun addicts are after is for all of us to accept that mass murders are okay. They don’t dare use THEIR 1st Amendment right and say this. But, you know by virtue of their Republican politicians sabotaging our right to feel safe in public places is their subtle demand to be allow to force us to accept some legal gun freak mowing all of us down.

    Reply
    1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

      I’ve noticed how leftists like you lie, and then try to squelch dissent from people proving you wrong.

      Reply
      1. Patricia McCullough December 17, 2015

        it’s pretty obvious you don’t approve of ANY dissension.

        Reply
        1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

          Especially not stupid DISSENT (look it up, fool).

          Reply
      2. Name December 17, 2015

        I say again to Buck Ofama the pinhead, gfys buck! And the same goes for the rest of the NRA leaning pissants on here.

        Reply
        1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

          FUB.

          Reply
        2. Insinnergy December 20, 2015

          He’s a sockpuppet of Otto.
          Hilaaaarious.

          Reply
          1. Buck Ofama December 30, 2015

            Go service your messiah.

            Reply
      3. Insinnergy December 17, 2015

        I notice… oh, nothing.
        You fail at addressing any points.
        You are a zero sum game.
        Or just a zero.

        Reply
        1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

          Sober up. Maybe you’ll notice something then.

          Reply
      4. Insinnergy December 20, 2015

        I’ve noticed that when your fingers move on the keyboard, drivel comes out.
        Jus’ sayin’.

        Reply
        1. Buck Ofama December 30, 2015

          I’ve noticed that when your lips move, dribble comes out. It looks like vanilla yogurt…

          Reply
    2. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

      Eleanore, you and I disagree on gun control but agree on other subjects. Yes, I am NRA and a Republican. I agree with you that Larsons Publisher should be held accountable for her firing. I don’t believe a word she wrote but will defend her right to say it to the death. We defend the Second Amendment to protect the other nine and that includes the First. I don’t believe the NRA would want her fired either. It is time for all of us to discuss things civilly. If we can’t there is no hope for this country. Look who we have running, Trump and Hillary. I want neither. We need a farmer or a house wife. Someone with common sense, no more lawyers and politicians. We need to start teaching the Constitution and Bill of Rights to our children. We also need to show respect for others ideas even when we disagree.

      Reply
  4. dbehrman December 17, 2015

    “Freedom of the press” is only as free as the owner of the medium allows it to be. As a former journalist who once worked for a notoriously conservative newspaper, I know the editorial stance of a newspaper is in the hands of ownership, not the First Amendment.

    Jan McLaughlin wrote what she thought was right, and she has a right to her opinion (which I endorse, for what it’s worth), but her position at the newspaper was at the discretion of the publisher.

    As citizens in the U.S. who value a free press and objective journalism and honest editorials, we have to support those newspapers and broadcast media that promote objectivity and honesty over ideology. I can only hope that the more sensible people of Bowling Green let Karmen Concannon know what they think of her decision to fire McLaughlin and what they think of sensible gun restrictions.

    Reply
    1. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

      I am a Life Member of the NRA, and while I disagree with Larsons thoughts I stand by her right to say it. I am also sure the NRA would not want her fired. We fight for the Second Amendment to protect all the other nine and this includes the First. It shows how far our country has degenerated. We need to hear everyone even if we think they are wrong and be civil. I disagree with both of you on gun control but will defend your right to say what you believe to the death. Her publisher needs to go back and read the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

      Reply
      1. dbehrman December 17, 2015

        I certainly wasn’t undermining McLauglin’s right to speak her mind, which I’m sure she’ll continue to do, if not through the auspices of her former newspaper.

        I, too, am a member of the NRA; I just don’t support the organization’s extremist position on the Second Amendment. In fact, I don’t think the Second Amendment justifies their stand, which is more likely shaped by the gun manufacturing industry. … All you have to do is look at the response from gun purchasers to the San Bernardino shootings and calls for more gun control … people just went out and bought more guns. I expect the manufacturers were popping champagne.

        The NRA’s campaign to “protect” the Second Amendment is a sham, an exercise in pure right-wing theater aimed at inflaming fears that the government (or “the people” in the form of “liberals”) is going to “steal some more of our freedoms”. It’s a single-note in a symphony of anti-government rhetoric that’s losing its meaning and power, having been played over and over and over again.

        Reply
        1. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

          Glad you are a member. I believe there are ways to improve how we deal with gun control. I just don’t believe in banning. I believe the Second Amendment allows us to have military grade weapons. I also don’t believe in registration. That being said I believe we should license all firearms owners hand gun, rifle, shotgun or machine gun. It could be put on the drivers license and a five year background check done every five years. The same way as my CDL HAZMAT is. This does not tell if you have gun only that you can have them. It could also be used to buy parts and ammo. The NRA fights all because when you open the door the gun grabbers won’t stop. We in New York learned that when Governor Cuomo passed the SafeAct at midnight with a “Message of Necessity” bypassing the people. I have spent hundreds trying to get this repealed and will not stop. Mayor Bloomberg of NYC fame tried to regulate soda and what you can eat. These are not the things of a free society. I value freedom and want the tools to protect it.

          Reply
          1. dbehrman December 17, 2015

            I value freedom as well. But, restrictions on our “freedoms” are necessary to living in a civil society. For example, traffic lights are restrictions on our freedom. Laws requiring driver’s licenses are restrictions on our freedom. And I could make a really long list of the freedoms we give up in order to live harmoniously with our fellow citizens. … When you say you believe the Second Amendment allows us to have “military grade” weapons, are you suggesting that ordinary citizens should be able to own rocket-propelled grenades? How about shoulder-fired surface to air missiles? M134 Miniguns? Soltam K6 mortar? … I don’t think so. Unless you’re considering fighting a battle all by yourself against a superior force, all you really need for self-defense at home is one or two handguns and a shotgun. And NO ONE in the current administration (or any other administration I’ve lived under) has every suggested that they would pass laws taking all your guns away.

            And, there’s nothing in the New York SafeAct that isn’t sensible and meant to protect law-abiding citizens. It did not take away anyone’s guns.

            Reply
          2. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

            Nothing in New Yorks SafeAct is sensible. The AR 15 is used in competition shoots with the military and has been for some time. It is also a great hunting and self defense platform. It has been banned by the SafeAct in New York. You can’t compare traffic lights to firearms. That is like saying you can keep shooting at the range while people are checking their targets. I have no problem with a weapons license. It could be added to the drivers licence. It could also be renewed every five years like I have to with my HAZMAT licence, that requires a background check every five years. I am against banning and registration. If you go back 100 years you would find citizens were allowed to own canons and explosives. It is only in recent times we have been disarmed piece by piece. This is what the NRA sticks up for. I don’t think most people would want or could afford a shoulder fired weapon. It would be hard to find a place to shoot it and you would only get one shot. As to taking all your guns away you only have to look to Australia. They said the same thing and today they are disarmed.

            Reply
          3. David December 18, 2015

            The 2nd Amendment is the ultimate check of the citizens against a tyrannical government. It ain’t about duck hunting. Molon labe

            Reply
          4. Dave O'Reilly December 17, 2015

            Private citizens don’t need to own military grade weapons. What white supremacist group do you belong to buddy?

            Reply
          5. leadvillexp December 18, 2015

            I am not a white supremacist. The fact is I voted for President Obama. I feel he did a good job in his first term but terrible in the second. Any good American citizen should be able to own a military grade weapon. Why are you afraid of good citizens owning weapons? Is it the poor criminals could get shot?

            Reply
  5. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

    I’m sure Jan will have no problem finding a new job with one of the many left-leaning outlets around the country. Then she’ll once again have a platform to spew her bile.

    Reply
    1. Patricia McCullough December 17, 2015

      BILE??? So dissension is now BILE?? My, my….just your opinion and no other is allowed? That sounds a bit one-sided, since the majority of us like to hear two sides. My guess is that you have issues.

      Reply
      1. CrankyToo December 17, 2015

        You should never wrestle with a pig. You both get all dirty… and the pig loves it.

        Reply
        1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

          And I know better than to “debate” you morons. It’s like playing chess with a pigeon. You knock over all the pieces, defecate all over the board, and then strut around like you’ve “won” something.

          Reply
          1. ray December 17, 2015

            Why do you keep doing then if it bothers you so much?

            Reply
          2. Buck Ofama December 18, 2015

            Why do you, idiot? It seems to bother you a lot more, moron.

            Reply
      2. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

        Too bad no one will pay you to spew yours. You should work on that. Contact George Soros.

        Reply
    2. LCR78 December 17, 2015

      Why are you so afraid of someone who doesn’t agree with your position? Her editorial will probably get more attention because she was fired than publishing the editorial would have ever generated. Complaining about someone’s opinions doesn’t do anything to stop the violence in this country. In fact, trying to suppress other peoples ideas just makes people angry.

      Reply
      1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

        Who said I’m “afraid??” I’m predicting she’ll get a job, fool.

        Reply
    3. Name December 17, 2015

      GFYS you POS!

      Reply
      1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

        FUB. Come out from under your rock and say that to my face, punk.

        Reply
    4. ray December 17, 2015

      what outfit do you work for?

      Reply
    5. Insinnergy December 17, 2015

      Astroturfer or paid troll. Ignore.

      Reply
      1. Buck Ofama December 17, 2015

        So why aren’t you “ignoring” me, you nitwit?

        Reply
        1. Insinnergy December 20, 2015

          Because labelling you trolls and astroturfers up front reduces your impact and seems to make you sad.
          Boo hoo.

          Don’t forget: Your tears feed me.

          Reply
          1. Buck Ofama December 30, 2015

            Your lover’s dick feeds you, liar.

            Reply
  6. Alvin Harrison December 17, 2015

    The NRA represents gun manufacturers….there is money to be made making and selling guns…end of story. Those who run this country are paid to protect the money supply not the people. Not to understand this will have you always wondering what is wrong with people….there is nothing wrong the people…the country is running as we have allowed it to be fashioned. The money supply flowing is vastly more important than the people in this country….period. End corporate control of our country (if it is still even possible) and see how fast things change.

    Reply
    1. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

      Who do you think the NRA is? I am not a gun manufacturer. Both sides have taken this too far. I support Larsons right to say what she feels even as I think it is wrong. I am sure the NRA does also. We fight for the Second Amendment to protect the other nine, that includes the First. Her Publisher needs to go back and read the Bill of Rights. We also had the right to use Freedom of Information. It is funny how when things are on the other shoe we back up and protest. We all need to take a step back and talk and listen civilly.

      Reply
    2. David December 17, 2015

      The NRA represents gun owners.

      Reply
      1. Independent1 December 17, 2015

        Hogwash!! The NRA represents gun manufacturers and it will do anything to increase NRA membership and gun sales even if that means more of its members will end up dying. You realize of course that a large percentage of the 33,000 people dying at the hands of guns each year are NRA members, right? And yet the NRA never does anything to support legislation that would reduce the number of its members dying??

        So how can you say that the NRA represents gun owners when it doesn’t care one way or the other whether or not gun owners die in droves???

        Reply
        1. David December 17, 2015

          Exactly

          Reply
        2. David December 17, 2015

          Exactly what percentage of those dying by gunshot are NRA members? You don’t know and can’t tell us. Hmmm… Another lie?

          Reply
          1. Independent1 December 18, 2015

            I don’t have statistics on what percent of gun deaths include NRA members, but I do have statistics which show that most gun deaths occur in red states with high gun ownership rates; and virtually everyone knows that it’s people in red states who love the NRA with high NRA membership rates – such that any moron could deduce that many of those dying or being injured in shooting accidents in these red states with high gun ownership are either NRA members or members of their families.

            Reply
          2. David December 18, 2015

            Morons spout off “facts” which turn out to be only their opinions. When called on it, they have to tuck their tails in and try to justify their flatulence.

            Reply
          3. Independent1 December 18, 2015

            All 10 states with the most gun related violence are GOP-governed States
            Analysis by 24/7 Wall Street – 2012
            Homicides/Assaults/Violent
            Crime

            LA-9.53/99.51/555.3
            AK-4.22/80.47/606.5
            AL-5.92/40.50/420.1
            AZ-4.24/57.36/405.9
            MS-6.91/51.69/269.8
            SC-4.95/127.88/571.9
            NM-3.69/87.26/567.5
            MO-5.59/88.90/447.4
            GA-4.57/58.64/373.2
            AR-4.53/100.56/480.9

            -18 of the 20 states with the highest firearms mortality rates are RED STATES; with Louisiana leading the nation in firearms mortality followed by Wyoming, Alabama, Montana, Mississippi, Arkansas, Nevada, Tennessee, Alaska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, S. Carolina, W. Virginia, Missouri, Arizona, Kentucky, Georgia,
            Idaho, Florida and N. Carolina

            Reply
          4. David December 18, 2015

            Typical libtard response. When utterly and completely defeated in an argument, try to deflect and go to another one. Nice try! But, the subject is you spouting off “facts” which turn out to be your baseless opinions. How are you handling this reality check? Maybe you need a ‘safe place’ to go to?

            Reply
          5. Independent1 December 18, 2015

            What a joke!! If anyone is deflecting IT’S YOU!! I’m not misquoting or misusing any facts…it’s you that’s being a typical rightwinger who just loves to live in denial and refuses to acknowledge that GOP governance is no different than ISIS – it kills people prematurely on purposel!!

            Reply
          6. David December 18, 2015

            “Misusing” facts? You are the one that said that a “large percentage” of the people dying from guns every year were NRA members. I asked you to quantify that statement and provide authority. You couldn’t do it. You were called on your BS and couldn’t back it up. So, you attempted to deflect the argument on to another area. Won’t work! We are going to get down to the end of this one. That is, you are a liar and you have been exposed as one. Do you need your ‘safe place’ now?

            Reply
          7. Independent1 December 18, 2015

            Only a moron such as yourself would refuse to believe that when the majority of shootings occur in states that love the NRA and that also have high NRA membership rates that a lot of those being shot aren’t NRA members. And I never claimed what ‘high percentage’ is: 20-25% would be a high percentage to me – that would be about 8,000 of the 33,000 plus killngs each year being NRA members or their families. And if you don’t think 8,000 dying because they believed the NRA’s lies isn’t a high number, that’s your problem.

            And by the way, when are you going to whip out some stats from a credible source that prove my assumption about a lot of NRA members dying by gun each year being wrong?

            Reply
          8. David December 18, 2015

            First, the question was how do you substantiate your bleatings. You can’t. Second, as of Sep 15, 2015, the annual number of suicides by firearm was 21,175. That means 8250 non-suicide death by firearms. What does the NRA have to with whether or not someone kills themselves by using a gun? As for the other 8250 victims, you are saying that “they died believing the NRA’s lies”. I don’t believe you seriously buy that. But, anyway, you are proven again to not be thinking very clearly. Hmmm….20-25% of all people killed by a firearm are NRA members? Membership rolls must really be falling!

            Reply
          9. Otto Greif December 19, 2015

            He repeatedly engages in what statisticians call the ecological fallacy.

            Reply
          10. Independent1 December 18, 2015

            And do you want to ignore these devious red state statistics too

            All 10 of America’s most miserable states, those with the least
            “well-being factor” for their residents are RED STATES with the worst being West Virginia and then: Kentucky, Mississippi, Alabama, Ohio, Arkansas, Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma and last but not least – Louisiana.

            8 of the 10 most corrupt states are GOP-run states: Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Alabama, Alaska, South Dakota, Kentucky and Florida.

            -All 15 of the states with the lowest life expectancy in the U.S. are RED STATES!! : starting with longevity projections for red states of 75 in: Miss., W. Va., Ala. & LA.; to 76 in: Arkansas, Kentucky & Tennessee to 77 in: S. Carolina, Georgia, Missouri, Indiana, Ohio & N. Carolina; No Blue State has longevity projected below 78 and 9 Blue States have longevity projected to 80-81 (only one Red State Utah has longevity projected over 80).

            Reply
      2. Independent1 December 17, 2015

        And I forgot to mention that the NRA does also not appear to care that between 150,000 and 200,000 people end up each year in hospital emergency rooms because of gun-related accidental shootings. What is the NRA really doing to cut down on this travesty?? Represents gun owners?? BS!!!

        Reply
        1. Otto Greif December 17, 2015

          The NRA provides firearms education and training.

          Reply
          1. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            Yeah!! That’s really helping a lot isn’t it?? 150,000 plus shooting accidents a year that require well over 2,000 hospital visits on average.

            Reply
          2. Otto Greif December 17, 2015

            All poisoning deaths
            Number of deaths: 48,545
            Deaths per 100,000 population: 15.4
            Motor vehicle traffic deaths
            Number of deaths: 33,804
            Deaths per 100,000 population: 10.7
            All firearm deaths
            Number of deaths: 33,636
            Deaths per 100,000 population: 10.6
            Source: CDC

            Reply
          3. DEFENDER88 December 17, 2015

            30,000 Firearm deaths??

            The figure of 30,000 deaths by gun is “Deceptive”.

            It is often quoted by the anti-gun left but some 90% of this figure is “suicides”(which I consider a personal choice we should all have if needed) and not gun “crime”.

            The real figure for Gun “Crime” is closer to 3,000 than 30,000.
            This also lowers the real “rate” to about 4 vs 10.6

            Reply
          4. Otto Greif December 18, 2015

            The point is there should be greater focus on the poisoning problem.

            Reply
          5. David December 17, 2015

            Those firearm deaths include suicide!

            Reply
        2. David December 17, 2015

          What is your authority for the figure of 150,000 to 200,000 accidental shooting injuries per year? More of your baseless bleatings?

          Reply
      3. Alvin Harrison December 17, 2015

        Right…keep on believing that…follow the money….

        Reply
      4. Alvin Harrison December 17, 2015

        If you really believe that you might find this a revelation …the article is “How the Gun Industry Funds the NRA with 10s of Millions” …from Business insider…

        http://www.businessinsider.com/gun-industry-funds-nra-2013-1

        Listen I am not anti gun…just responsible gun ownership and sales… but I always want to know who the players are and who represents who in the game.

        Reply
        1. David December 17, 2015

          Thank you for the reply. Read the article. It cites a comment from the head of the anti-gun Violence Policy Center. I take it with a grain of salt. We need more evidence.

          Reply
          1. Alvin Harrison December 17, 2015

            David. Thank you for being so reasonable. However…I think it would be naive not to recognize the symbiotic relationship that intrinsically must exist between the gun manufacturers and the NRA. To believe that the manufacturers contribute to the NRA war chest just makes sense to me….the fact that the anti gun Violence Policy Center is quoted in the article does not mean all of the stated numbers etc are false. Frankly logic tells me that if I was a manufacturer of firearms I would contribute to an organization that supported my interests. Again…I am not saying this is right or wrong…I just want to know who is pulling any strings, if any are being pulled.

            Thanks again for not going off on me like many of those in these forums are want to do. America is built on the free discussion of ideas…..something those in these forums often forget and resort to name calling. Your comments were refreshing in there intelligence.

            Reply
          2. David December 17, 2015

            Alvin–thank YOU for a reasoned view on this subject. Obviously, the gun manufacturers know where their bread is buttered and vice versa. However, as a Life Member of the NRA, I can tell you that it does not promote specific manufacturers– it does promote gun ownership, training, and safety.

            Reply
          3. Buck Ofama December 18, 2015

            Just like the symbiotic relationship between 0bama and “green” energy companies, huh?

            Reply
          4. DennisRL December 18, 2015

            (I posted this before but I just had to repeat it here.) Your userid excludes you from any serious consideration. But I’m pretty sure anything you think wouldn’t be taken seriously anyway.

            Reply
      5. DennisRL December 18, 2015

        Gee, I didn’t think that it was possible for anyone to be this naive about what the NRA actually represents today compared to what it used to represent. The whole idea about gun safety, responsible ownership and representing the individual gun owner is so much hogwash. They’re in bed with the manufacturers and have been for years. They’re only purpose now is to sell more guns by scaring the bejesus out of people like you. I”m a gun owner but you couldn’t pay me to belong to the NRA.

        Reply
        1. David December 19, 2015

          Sorry you feel that way. I was not aware that the NRA made any profit off the sale of firearms. Do you have any authority to back your claim?

          Reply
          1. DennisRL December 19, 2015

            Yow…here’s the problem I have with the whole ‘do you have any authority to back your claim?’ thing. This drives me to distraction by the way. The right constantly lies through their teeth about a number of issues (fox news, right wing radio etc.) and never has anything to back their claims, but when someone with an opposite view says anything then it’s a different story. Common knowledge about the NRA has been around for a long time as to what they’re all about, but if you want to stick your fingers in your ears and chant la,la,la,la, I guess that’s your prerogative. And don’t use that old deflection canard about ‘I wasn’t aware the NRA made a profit off the sale of firearms’. Of course they don’t make any money from the sale of firearms. Follow the money. If I support your cause with donations and kick backs, I don’t have to be directly involved in the sale of anything. Your naivety or reluctance to look at the truth is astounding.

            Reply
          2. David December 19, 2015

            Okay…we agree that the NRA does not make a profit off the sale of firearms. Many if their backers are gun manufacturers who obviously do. Last I heard, there were over 4 million members of the NRA. I am a Life Member. I think the NRA wants to increase the number of gun owners more than guns that are owned. I am very glad they are working to preserve my 2nd Amendment right to own them.

            Reply
          3. DennisRL December 19, 2015

            The second amendment is a whole other story. Completely and totally overdone. Normally I wouldn’t waste my time with conversing with people on these blogs. Most are a bunch of ideology nuts. But you seem to be a reasoning person. I own guns but I don’t look on guns as some sort of religion or as a paranoid delusion that we’re one step away from the government taking them away. It’s absolutely laughable to think that somehow my having guns is going to protect me from some totalitarian government takeover. First of all if they wanted to do it they could and my 12 gauge shotgun or pistol isn’t going to prevent it.
            Secondly, to do that takes people. People in the army or national guard etc. Do you honestly think that they’re going to go along with that? That might happen in a third world country but not here. Ironically, the only way I ever see something like that happening is if the far right in this country somehow came to power. Then we would see an end to a lot of civil liberties all in the name of national security. Zealots did this in 30’s Germany using the same arguments that you now hear from a lot of the republican presidential candidates. That scares me.

            Reply
          4. David December 19, 2015

            I appreciate your response. You have raised several issues. The first concerns the possible confiscation of small arms by the Federal Government. Could it happen? Yes. There are those elected officials who do want that. Their rhetoric may be disguised as “reasonable”, but I think that there are some who feel only the police and military should have guns. Look at Australia. Do I think they will succeed? Not for a long time. The 2nd Amendment is a bone that they are having trouble swallowing. Can we fight back? Ask the Afghanis if it is possible to resist. Ask the North Vietnamese (whom I fought!). Barack has removed quite a few generals and admirals. I pray that the enlisted soldiers would not fire upon their countrymen.

            Reply
          5. DennisRL December 19, 2015

            David, you’re not thinking logically here. What do you think would happen if tomorrow the government said that they’re going to confiscate all the guns. A second civil war would start the next day. As for as fighting back. Do you actually want to compare our country to Afghanistan or North Vietnam? That you have so little faith in our form of government that you would think that we would have to take up arms to fight each other. Over what? Good luck with your paranoia. I have more faith in ourselves to resolve our differences peacefully without the need to arm myself to the teeth.

            Reply
  7. Otto Greif December 17, 2015

    The statement the NRA opposes “any form of background checks” is a lie.

    Reply
    1. drdroad December 17, 2015

      Please show me a statement from the NRA supporting ANY background checks.

      Reply
        1. Independent1 December 17, 2015

          What does what LaPierre said 16 years ago have to do with anything given it’s very clear he no longer believes or supports what he said back then. And there have been numerous articles pointing out how LaPierre has let the gun industry corrupt the NRA over the past decade or more.

          Reply
          1. Otto Greif December 17, 2015

            Read the comment I was replying to.

            Reply
          2. Independent1 December 17, 2015

            What the NRA said 15 years ago is in no way indicative of what it believes today and therefore your post is worthless and not in response to the question that was posted. You’re just a typical right-wing fabricator of reality.

            Post something directly from the NRA dated within the past 2 years that says it supports background checks!!!!!

            Reply
    2. Insinnergy December 17, 2015

      Giant tool troll is a giant tool.
      Who knew?

      Reply
  8. Otto Greif December 17, 2015

    Notice this “journalist” is upset citizens used the Freedom of Information Act.

    Reply
    1. Insinnergy December 17, 2015

      I would love to use a reverse version of the Freedom of Information Act on your troll-posts.
      Something like applying to have everything you ever say stored where no-one can read it.
      Ahhh… dreams.

      Reply
      1. Buck Ofama December 18, 2015

        What an ironic post this is.

        Reply
        1. Insinnergy December 20, 2015

          Shush sockpuppet.
          The only one who sees irony here is you.

          Reply
  9. bromeando December 17, 2015

    Boycott!

    Reply
  10. leadvillexp December 17, 2015

    I am an NRA Life Member and a Republican. While I believe her article was unequivocally wrong, I feel the paper was unjustified in firing her. We fight for the Second Amendment to protect our rights, one of those is the First Amendment. This shows how far off track our country has come. While I stand 100% with the NRA I am also willing to die to back up Larson’s right to free speech. Our soldiers have died to protect these rights and the NRA is founded on these rights. We need to step back and listen to both sides, even if we disagree. If we don’t we are doomed as a country. We need our children to read and understand the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Our Forefathers saw today and warned us about it but we are to stupid to listen. We also need to get out and vote. If all the gun owners had done this Governor Cuomo, in New York would not be in office today. He created the Safe Act destroying New Yorkers rights. He won by a slim margin. While I begged people to vote, including relatives I kept hearing my vote doesn’t count. Well it did. If you don’t vote, you vote for the opposition. If you like Hillary don’t vote.

    Reply
    1. Dave O'Reilly December 17, 2015

      I can assure as a New Yorker I get along fine without a gun. You people are the cause of all the problems we have with gun violence. Most of these people who shoot people are legal gun owners with no rap sheet. So if you really value your guns then you better reign your fellow gun owners in.

      Reply
      1. leadvillexp December 18, 2015

        Good for you. When you get in trouble call the police. I hope they get there in time. Are we angry? Yes. you rabbits can hide in your hole and hope the fox doesn’t find you but I prefer to be able to live out in the open. You sound like many from the city, if raped don’t fight back, if robbed give them your wallet. Myself, I earned that dollar and I will fight to the death to keep it. Good luck next time you meet a bad guy and don’t count on the police.

        Reply
        1. David December 18, 2015

          Well said. When seconds count, call the police – they are just minutes away!

          Reply
        2. Buck Ofama December 18, 2015

          No, he should call the BLM movement. I’m sure they’ll respond.

          Reply
          1. DennisRL December 18, 2015

            your userid excludes you from any serious consideration. But I’m pretty sure anything you think wouldn’t be taken seriously anyway.

            Reply
        3. Dave O'Reilly December 22, 2015

          Oddly enough I have always been able to deal with trouble without a gun. Guns are for pansies.

          Reply
          1. leadvillexp December 23, 2015

            Hope you are bullet and cut proof.

            Reply
  11. plc97477 December 17, 2015

    Thank you Jan. #IstandwithJan.

    Reply
  12. Böcker December 18, 2015

    What is the NRA afraid of?? The truth!!

    Reply
  13. lizinIllinois December 18, 2015

    Perhaps the editor should have taken to task, for the SB incident, not the NRA (which was in no way involved) but … Barack Obama, whose complete shambles of a foreign policy and his dismissing the threat of ISIS (AND his being more interested in politics than security, in terms of checking people coming to the US) led directly to the deaths of 14 people. By the time she wrote this editorial, it was known to be a terrorist attack, not some lone wacko with a gun.

    Reply

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