My position on firearms is well known, but for those who may have some doubt, I believe in the right to keep and bear arms as its expressed in the Pennsylvania Constitution, Article I, Section XXI. If you're not familiar with it, look it up.
I also believe in some sage advice my Dad gave me as a child, and reinforced over the years. "If you find yourself in a hole, the very first thing you want to do is drop the shovel." I listened to Costas use Sunday Night Football as a bully pulpit for gun control, and watched him again last night attempting to explain, on his own Thursday night sports show, what he really meant. It appears that Costas has rented a backhoe, as he's dug himself a hole deep enough that he'll likely need someone to pipe in sunshine for him.
Dragging out John McEnroe, who spouts Mayor Bloomberg's company line on guns, in order to seek some sort of approbation for his Sunday rant was predictable. McEnroe hates guns, and at the same time indicated that tennis players would never be placed in a situation where a gun might be an instrument to stop a crime. Beyond McEnroe's elitist view, he's got his head in the sand (or perhaps filling a body orifice). Nobody is, by virtue of the sport they play, guaranteed a free ride through life, never to encounter violence.
Charles Barkley, basketball great, and realist, told Costas that he carries a firearm now, and has since age 21 or 22. Costas feigned surprise that sports figures may carry a firearm for self defense. He related an anecdote about a particular pro football team, where of 80 guys, some 65 told their coach that yes, they carry firearms for self defense. And then the digging began. Rather than approach the situation with some sense of reality, Costas continues to insist that the mere presence of firearms will eventually result in a violent act, perhaps even a killing.
Barkley told it like it is. A white man could never had said, and communicated effectively, what Barkley did. He clearly stated that its a black problem in the black community, and as a black man he is closer to the reality than either Costas or McEnroe. You can read the commentaries at http://www.rgj.com/usatoday/article/1749025&usatref=sportsmod?odyssey=mod%7cnewswell%7cfeaturedtext%7cSports%7cp and make up your own mind.
If you want to rely on talking heads like Costas, who generally sounds fairly well prepared to present sports commentary, that's fine. Personally, I'm going to do my own research. For example, the National Academy of Sciences studied 57 gun control schemes. None worked, in their opinion. Lott and Kleck have done studies, and published a book entitled "More Guns, Less Crime", and find that guns are used some 2.5 million times every year to stop crime. Not surprisingly, the lame stream media doesn't put much stock in Lott or Kleck. They also don't tell you that in less than 1% of such encounters, are shots fired. And how does one explain the incredible increase in gun ownership over the past 4 years, but violent crime dropping off?
Sorry, Mr. Costas, but the Javon Belcher murder-suicide was more about crimes of violence towards women, lack of respect for oneself and others, and the predominance of gun violence within a narrow socio-economic demographic. I'm glad Charles Barkley said "Especially in the black culture, it's a crime culture. We, as black people, and I always say 'we', we won't have respect, we don't have respect for each other. We have more black men in prison than we do in college, and crime in our neighborhoods is running rampant. I know everybody reacts when something like the Belcher thing happens. But being black, this is something you deal with all the time, and it's just sad. I'm a guy and I carry a gun." Had those been my words, I'm sure I would be villified as a racist and a hater.