I watched the “Guns in America” Town Hall Meeting on CNN which was hosted by Anderson Cooper featuring President Obama. Here are five observations.
1. At the top of the show, Cooper admitted that CNN approached the Obama White House about doing this town hall after the San Bernardino attacks. So even though the San Bernardino attacks were a result of Islamic terrorism, CNN nevertheless approached the Obama Administration with the idea of having a town hall meeting about gun control and the Obama White House enthusiatically agreed. It once again demonstrates that CNN and the Obama Administration share the same political objectives. It also demonstrates that Obama and CNN would rather talk about anything other than Islamic terrorism. Of course, when it comes to President Obama the words Islamic and terrorism will never collide in the same sentence.
Let’s be clear. No background check known to man would have prevented the San Bernardino attacks. To start with, the terrorists had a straw buyer. Then let’s add the fact the perpetrators were affiliated with ISIS, an organization which seeks to spill American blood. Do you think expanded background checks are going to deter ISIS in any way shape or form from killing Americans?
2. I’m not sure why Obama agreed to this meeting. He came off worse tonight than he did in his first debate with Mitt Romney. Without a teleprompter, he is utterly incoherent. As the meeting wore on Obama came off as patronizing especially towards Kimberly Corban, a rape victim, who want to be able to purchase and carry a weapon to protect herself and her family.
On the one hand, Obama insisted he wasn’t trying to make it harder for Americans to purchase guns. What utter nonsense. Obama has repeatedly said that the problem is easy access to guns. Of course, he’s trying to make it harder for Americans to obtain guns. On the other hand, Obama claimed that people weren’t well trained to use weapons. So Obama blames law abiding Americans for having too many guns and being too incompetent to use them.
Obama also did himself no favors when he said Americans who had anxiety about gun confiscation were engaging in “conspiracy theories”. Well, then why praise Australia’s gun confiscation program? If Obama praises Australia’s gun confiscation program is it then unreasonable to conclude that he might support some form of confiscation program? If Obama wants a common sense solution then he should exercise common sense and refrain from insulting people who have the temerity to hold an opinion different from his own. He would be wise if he employed the philosophy that one captures more flies with honey than with vinegar. When President Obama demands that everyone “stop exaggerating and mischaracterizing each other’s positions” it would be nice if he led by example.
3. President Obama claimed he has repeatedly invited the NRA to the White House. I would like to see those invitations in writing and the NRA’s written response to those invitations. I have tweeted President Obama to provide this information. I’m not holding my breath.
4. While both President Obama and Anderson Cooper acknowledged that two-thirds of gun deaths in this country are as a result of suicides, the discussion of suicide in America did not take up two-thirds of the meeting. Expanded background checks were the central discussion point. Could someone please explain how expanded background checks will diminish the suicide rate in this country?
5. All things considered this town hall could have been much worse. There was an effort to have people from both sides of the issue heard including Taya Kyle, the widow of Chris Kyle and I think she and others skeptical of Obama came off as reasonable and well measured. The same could not be said of Obama.
There were also instances when Cooper challenged Obama. When Obama complained that Republicans were politicizing the gun issue, Cooper pointed out that Obama himself said it should be politicized. It doesn’t get CNN off the hook for spinning San Bernardino into being about gun control. But they could have easily filled the audience with Democratic Party operatives and gun control activists. While they were present there were other views in that room. Unfortunately, where it concerns his gun control agenda, I don’t think Obama will give these views a moment’s consideration.