Costas to Gun Rights Advocates: FU and the Horse You Rode In On

 

Given the firestorm of criticism that’s rained down on Bob Costas after his half-time gun control rant, you’d kinda figure the NBC Sportscaster would follow TTAG’s advice re: post-defensive gun use. STFU. Nope. “I do not think the Second Amendment should be repealed and I do not think, under reasonable circumstances, that people should be prohibited from having guns,” Costas told nytimes.com. Sounds reasonable enough (to some). But— “I think most reasonable people think we do not have sufficient controls on the availability of guns and ammunition.” Which leads to . . .

Costas’ call for “a combination of enlightened legislation and controls, coupled with an adjustment in our attitude toward guns.” Because “common sense tells us the culture is overrun by guns and that many people who possess them are dangerous or careless.”

As for folks who think Costas should have STFU before flapping his gums about guns, the NBC employee let ‘em have it with both barrels.

Mr. Costas noted in response that N.F.L. coverage on many networks had talked about the incident all day on Sunday. Jovan Belcher, a linebacker for the Chiefs, killed Kasandra Perkins, the mother of their 3-month-old daughter, Zoey, and then drove to his team’s stadium, where he killed himself in front of his coach and general manager.

Mr. Costas added that he had routinely used his time during halftime coverage to make personal observations and comments on a number of football-related subjects, including the level of violence displayed on the field.

He said the criticisms of his commentary “hold no weight with me” because the same people saying that that was an inappropriate time and place to talk about the gun issue “would have thought it was fine if they agreed with what I was saying.”

The issue of guns has come up far too often in sports already, he said, with athletes seeming to be among the groups with the most gun owners. “Do you think the place guns have in sports is appropriate?” Mr. Costas asked. “That it’s healthy?”

He added: “I defy anyone to give me one example when an athlete having a gun averted trouble, defused a situation, protected someone from harm. But we can think of countless situations where an athlete having a gun led to tragedy.”

The ball’s in our court, apparently. Costas clearly thinks that Americans who believe that they have a God-given/natural right to self-defense, and that their ability to do so through force of arms is protected by the United States Constitution [see: Second Amendment], must justify, to him, their decision to exercise that right.

Which goes double for professional athletes. Interestingly, at least one of those athletes begs to differ. Check this from nydailynews.com:

“If you have daughters, you should (have a gun),” defensive lineman Shaun Smith said. “You have to protect yourself. You work so hard to get to where you at, I’ll be damned if I’ll just let someone take it from me.”

By tackling this subject, then pressing the pedal to the metal, Costas has placed himself squarely in the [proverbial] sights of Americans who believe in their Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. I imagine a large percentage of viewers who watch NBC football hold that view.

It comes as no surprise that NBC, a mainstream media outlet with a clear pro-gun control bias, has backed-up Costas. Neither Costas’ career nor the network’s public perception will emerge from this controversy unscathed. (To wit: nomoresnf.com.) Nor should they.

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

63 Responses to Costas to Gun Rights Advocates: FU and the Horse You Rode In On

  1. avatarTTACer says:

    Sean Taylor?

    • avatarAJD says:

      Was killed because he had to defend himself with a knife in a gun fight. He wasn’t allowed a gun in the house because of a charge of assault in which he pointed a gun at 3 people that allegedly stole 2 ATVs from him. RIP #26.

  2. avatarChas says:

    Hey Bob, the feeling is mutual, buddy.

  3. avatarCannew says:

    What a pompous attitude, and talk about looking down your nose at athletes. He might as well have said I have covered pro athletes way longer than you little people, and they are far too stupid to handle guns.

    Also that furry creature attacking his head is just laughable.

  4. avatarSteve says:

    So Bob Costas has an opinion on gun control. Big Deal.

    We all know the saying about opinions.

    …Yawn…Next.

    • avatarJoke & Dagger says:

      Another Northeastern elitist, much smarter than the rest of us based on location. He does the Olympics, so he’s even smarter than the usual football media.

      There’s a reason where I live is called “flyover” country. The planes from NY to LA literally and figuratively fly over. Planes full of the best and brightest, at least in their minds. Screw Bob Costas. I tuned his non-sports pontificating out a long time ago.

  5. avatarAnonymous Coward says:

    Why should Bob Costas STFU?

    He’s laughing all the way to the bank, becuase he knows that Americans — including a lot of gun owners — value football more than gun-rights (or most other rights). He will suffer no negative consequences for promoting gun control, and the market will continue to reward him.

    The only people who are getting worked up about this are a few gun-rights advocates who (1) care about what celebrities say, and (2) are looking to feed their addiction to self-righteous indignation by being angry about something.

    Rome had bread and circuses, America has beer and football.

    • avatarAharon says:

      “Rome had bread and circuses, America has beer and football”

      Processed foods, a high fat salty diet, entertainment for keeping or making people sedentary and physically unfit, TV/Hollywood/schools to dumb-down Americans… the citizens of this country can’t move, think clearly enough, or want to take action to live free and strong.

    • avatarAnonymous Coward says:

      - Processed foods
      - a high fat salty diet
      - entertainment for keeping or making people sedentary and physically unfit
      - TV/Hollywood/schools to dumb-down Americans

      What are you, some kind of 0bamunist?

      Except for the “schools” part, those are all the result of capitalism giving the people what they want.

      So is the free market rewarding Bob Costas, who earns more money in one week than most households do all year. He makes $5 million a year, and his estimated net worth is $20 million to $33 million.

      • avatarإبليس says:

        People deserve to get what they want…good and hard.

      • avatarLisa R says:

        Yeah Bob C is a 1 percenter!!!! He should be paying more taxes to compensate for his complete lack of knowledge of the constitution and the Bill of Rights

      • avatarAnonymous Coward says:

        “Yeah Bob C is a 1 percenter!!!! He should be paying more taxes”

        I didn’t realize the Occupy Wall Street marxists were reading this forum.

        The next socialist thing I expect you to say is that money isn’t speech and that corporation’s aren’t people.

  6. avatarCrazed Java says:

    “I think most reasonable people think we do not have sufficient controls on the availability of guns and ammunition.”

    Anyone else notice that gun control advocates seem completely oblivious to our current controls on gun ownership? I think we have some very effective laws, as effective as laws can be anyway. We do a fairly reasonable screening on criminal background and mental history, but no system is going to be 100%. We used to have quite a few ineffective laws and most of them have expired or been overturned. Example, the 2 week waiting period was far more effective at helping people delay their ability to defend themselves than it was for “cooling off” a would be instant murderer. Unfortunately, gun or no gun, violence happens.

    I always want to ask people who talk about “gun violence” how it is worse than any other kind of violence.

    • avatarbramankp says:

      I’m not sure that’s a valid question. How are nuclear weapons worse than conventional weapons? It’s clear that firearms provide for an easier and faster way, overall, of doing damage than a knife or a baseball bat.

      There are people that draw their lines to differentiate the level of violence at the gun boundry just like there are people that draw the lines to differentiate war at the nuclear boundry.

      • avatarMichael B. says:

        “It’s clear that firearms provide for an easier and faster way, overall, of doing damage than a knife or a baseball bat.”

        Disagree. It’s a lot easier (and faster) to repeatedly stab someone with a knife or swing a stick than it is to hit someone with a gun, reload it, etc.

        Now if you said guns were more effective force multipliers you might be onto something. But that wouldn’t have mattered in this case anyway.

      • avatarCrazed Java says:

        Most gun violence that is focused on is at the individual level. If someone commits a murder with a knife, is it less heinous because they did not use a gun instead?

        This is my core issue with the focus on “gun violence”. We have cultural issues that go far deeper than gun ownership. If anything, our ability to own firearms may be doing more to control some of the chaos that is currently out there.

    • avatarMark says:

      Crazed Java is absolutely right. Forget about the little issues, we should have laws against crime! Oh, wait…

  7. avatarJesse says:

    What does he think about the fact that there are *gasp* shooting sports? Have those athletes should have guns?

    • avatarTTACer says:

      Didn’t this d-bag cover the Olympics?

      • avatarMatt in FL says:

        I wouldn’t know. NBC’s coverage was absolute crap, so after they mangled the opening ceremony to death by talking over it, I switched the BBC and never looked back.

    • avatarelnonio says:

      Don’t take that bait, because the obvious comeback would be that he agrees with sporting uses, which for him would may .22lr biathlon type rifles, maybe sporting clays, and little else. Even then, he would then argue that those firearms should be locked in club houses, and never at home.

      In any case, it’s a red herring.

  8. avatarMosman says:

    I have no immediate data, but speculate more people have died playing football than have been killed by football players with guns. And that’s not how OJ would do it, if he were to do such a thing.

  9. avatarMatt in FL says:

    “Do you think the place guns have in sports is appropriate?” Mr. Costas asked. “That it’s healthy?”

    I think that it’s irrelevant. Guns and sports have nothing to do with one another. If athletes “seem to be among the groups with the most gun owners,” that’s an interesting anecdote, but it means nothing in reality. If we were talking about, say, garbage men…

    The issue of guns has come up far too often in [waste management] already, he said, with [garbage men] seeming to be among the groups with the most gun owners. “Do you think the place guns have in [waste management] is appropriate?” Mr. Costas asked. “That it’s healthy?”

    You see how ludicrous that makes it? Insert any other profession or vocation you want, it still makes no sense. The fact that he was an athlete may have contributed to the feelings that led to Belcher’s horrible acts, but correlation != causation. If this had been a murder-suicide by a Wall Street stockbroker (another profession known for its stress), would anyone really be arguing that there was an unhealthy link between stockbrokers and guns? Would Ali Velshi take 30 seconds out of his segment on CNN to decry gun ownership among the Wall Street power set? I’m thinking no.

  10. avatarPaul says:

    Let’s all feel sorry for this S.O.B. Never mind that he committed a MURDER, took the easy way out, in order to escape justice. Nope lets blame the firearm. It doesn’t matter that this moron SLAUGHTERED the mother to his child. No lets blame football. Which, to be honest, with me is fine. These pukes are OVERPAID, with way to much attention placed on them.

    We must forget about the mother, and focus on the instrument used to carry out this CRIME! If it hadn.t been for the pistol/revolver in the house, he might have used something more human, such as a golf club, or a tennis racket.

    The worst crime scene I ever rolled on, was one where a young girl had her head smashed with a paving stone. Thank God a firearm had not been used, because the jerk would have had an excuse. The “…gun made me do it…” it talked to this knee-grow, and whispered to him, “Kill her, and then go to the stadium and thank everyone, in order to garner sympathy. And then blow your STUPID FU_ _ING brains out!.”

    That must be what happened. But one thing bothers me, if as it is now being stated, the coach and others were trying to talk him out of killing himself, then why wasn’t security called? Why weren’t the police called, until AFTER he did this?
    But none of this matters so long as WE feel bad for this mudering bastard.

  11. avatarMosman says:

    There are about 13 deaths per year either directly or indirectly due to playing football. Never mind the 10′s of thousands of concussions. Seems like banning football would be more productive except there is too much money involved.

    And keeping guns out of the hands of OJ wouldn’t help. You know. If he were going to do something like that. Which he didn’t.

  12. avatarjlottmc says:

    I say just unleash Bruce Kraft on this clown. That should simmer skippy down. Makes me glad I can’t stand football especially pro football.

  13. avatarBill says:

    I love when these pompous Aholes talk about gun culture. Whos gun culture? A derelict crack dealing wannabe rappers gun culture? A single mother in a suspect area just trying to get by gun culture? A collectors gun culture? These pompous A$$hats would never even think that not everyone thinks about guns or the second amendment in the same way. They can’t imagine that others do not suffer from the same group think they have. For God Sakes save me from the “good” people.

    • avatarJohn says:

      Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
      -— C.S. Lewis

  14. avatarST says:

    Considering the NBC network management is just slightly left of Nancy Pelosi, Costas just secured his future at the network with that anti-gun diatribe.

    As to public outcry against NBC and Costa by gun owners , remember this. Every year since 2008 record numbers of firearms have been sold. One would think with all those millions of new gun owners we’d be set come the 2012 election. Things didn’t play out that way.

    The NRA’s membership is 5 million odd people, which sounds great until one notes that some estimates put gun ownership in America at around 50 million persons.By and large, most people don’t give a damn about gun rights. In reading the protests against Bob Costa online, I’ve noticed most of the objections are because he used a sportscasting position as a political soapbox, not because of what he said about gun rights per se.

    We need to jettison the assumption that gun ownership=gun activism. Most folks see a gun as a tool and don’t get why people like us wail about the smallest regulation proposals.

    • avatarnonnamous says:

      We need to jettison the assumption that only people who support the NRA support gun rights.

    • avatarStacy says:

      I’m not sure gun rights activism is as fringe as you seem to be implying. I wouldn’t call myself an activist, and while I enjoy shooting and have several firearms in my collection, it’s not my primary hobby. Yet, I still get very worked up about the slightest new gun regulation proposal, because in my personal experience guns are already reasonably regulated, and every new proposal is manifestly either an emotional reaction to a salacious news item like this one, or a stalking horse for an eventual gun ban.

      I’m not a militia member, mall ninja, or frustrated wannabe cop, I have no particular plans to carry concealed, and in spite of myself I can’t help thinking open carriers are being a little silly. I am, however, jealous of my rights and good and goddam tired of having them abridged in large and small ways due to the hysterics of people who are ultimately just looking for a scapegoat, or to advance their political agenda.

      • avatarMichael B. says:

        Start exercising your rights more and enjoy them while you can, Stacy. Carry concealed and take some classes. We need more people like you around, not in the ground because of some scum-sucking criminal.

      • avatarMike in NC says:

        You may not be a militia member, but depending on age, state, citizenship, criminal status, and health (being able-bodied) you are probably subject to call-up to a militia in an emergency. These are not always leftover laws from 200 years ago either. Here in NC the statute was most recently modernized way back in 2011 and still includes the nearly universal unorganized militia category.

    • avatarRalph says:

      The NRA’s membership is 5 million odd people

      Actually, it’s only about 1 million odd people and 4 million normal ones.

    • I agree with you that every single gun owner should be a member of some pro-gun rights organization. It does not have to be the NRA. There are others out there and I am member of 4 of them. There is nothing wrong with supporting multiple organizations. There is something wrong with supporting No Pro-gun rights organization when you know that there are a lot of people trying to take away your rights.

      There is no such thing as Gun Grabbers only wanting to ban some guns or some magazines or some people. Look what happened in England. They took all the guns and then they went after swords too.

  15. avatarMr Pierogie says:

    I’ll try to make a simple analogy, so even idiots like Costas can understand:

    Let’s say I have a car. I use this car to commute to work and nothing else. I’m the legal owner, I bought it legally, I have no intention to use it for illicit activity. Ok, let’s say my car gets stolen. Maybe the thief intends to smuggle drugs with it, or perhaps wants to run somebody over and kill them. Am I to blame for that? Is the car to be blamed for that? Or, I ask you, is it the the guilty party the criminal who is solely responsible for stealing my car and for any and all criminal activity performed using said car?

    So, are we going to ban cars? Do we need strict car control? Most, if not all, tools can have the potential of becoming “weapons” of some sort. But should we be banning all those tools or just punish the people who misuse them?

    • avatarMilsurp Collector says:

      That’s the problem with antis, especially the Media Matters crew. Because all firearms are “designed only to kill” in their minds, they believe that any firearm automatically has that uncleansable, evil, killy-murdery black magic witchcraft attached to it, and that anyone who owns one will be possessed by forces unknown and always inclined to use it to solve any situation whatsoever. It’s just sad that such childish emotionally based “logic” PASSES as legitimate journalistic opinion in today’s world.

  16. avatarAverage_Casey says:

    Costas reminds me of a little whiny wimp who is completely afraid of guns. Seriously, if you want to get him to shut up, get everyone to not watch NBC. If enough people listen, he’ll get fired.

  17. avatarSkyler says:

    How many athletes have used a gun to defend themselves? Football players don’t generally need a gun to defend themselves. They’re fighting machines.

    It’s the non-athletes that need guns to defend themselves from the guys as big as linebackers for the NFL. That 100 pound woman is not going to win in any kind of engagement with anyone unless she has a weapon to assist her.

    Costas threw out a straw man. It’s not the athletes that need guns as much as the rest of the people do.

  18. avatarThomasR says:

    Bob Costas is really 4’11″? You would think being around guys practically twice his height and three times the weight, would give even someone with his liberal insensibilities an appreciation for the need at times of ” the great equalizer”.

    I believe this proves, again, that liberalism really is based on denial, delusion and for some, out right insanity.

    • avatarMike says:

      Bob Costas is reportedly 5′-7″.

      Does this prove then that conservatism is based on believing wild allegations and running with them to support a flawed argument.

      Oh wait, that’s Fox News.

  19. avatarBilly Wardlaw says:

    “I defy anyone to give me one example when an athlete having a gun averted trouble, defused a situation, protected someone from harm. But we can think of countless situations where an athlete having a gun led to tragedy.”

    Is he suggesting that in order to be an Athlete in the NFL, or any other professional sport, you must give up your 2A rights? This is just emotional hysteria on Mr Costas’ part. I personally cut him slack for being too close to the situation, and as many celebrities do, he is simple using the outlets his status affords him to lash out and express himself. He’s wrong, he’s misinformed, but like all of us, he is entitled to opinion.
    Do any of us really think his opinion weighs into the issue very heavily?

  20. avatarWiregrass says:

    So what you are saying Bob, is that the people you make your living running your mouth off about are not the sort of people you think have sufficient character to be trusted with owning firearms. How about making a halftime screed on how NBC and the other sports media glorify and revere individuals of poor personal character to the extent of criminal behavior just because they happen to be big and can run fast? And all just to make a buck.

    F U Bob Costas.

  21. avatarcz82mak says:

    There are laws against crazy people owning guns.
    There are laws against criminals owning guns.
    There are laws against drug abusers owning guns.
    There are laws against what kind of guns we can have.

    How hard is it to understand that if a person wants to commit a crime, they don’t care about laws? We need a law against new laws.

    • avatarMike says:

      There are also laws about having drug convictions or domestic violence cases and not being able to have a gun, yet when pro athletes violate that they seem to get a slap on the wrist and told not to come to work for a day or two. Wish I could do that.

  22. avatarbeanfield says:

    “I defy anyone to give me one example when an athlete having a gun averted trouble, defused a situation, protected someone from harm. But we can think of countless situations where an athlete having a gun led to tragedy.” -Bob Costas

    What exactly is he getting at here…denying athletes their 2A rights?

    Be on the lookout for the revised section 11 on the 4473 from the ATF:
    m. Do you play sports? Yes No

  23. avatarMike says:

    I’m going to wait and see what Chris Henry, Tank Johnson and Plaxico Burress have to say about this.

    • avatarbeanfield says:

      Considering all three of them have difficulty abiding by state and/or federal gun laws, they probably don’t care. Well…Chris for sure, seeing as he’s dead.

  24. avatarNot Bob Costas says:

    Let flip this for a moment and make this an argument that most people used to agree with…

    “I defy anyone to give me one example when a rapper having a gun averted trouble, defused a situation, protected someone from harm. But we can think of countless situations where a rapper having a gun led to tragedy.”

    No one ever argues with that. Yet, the lifestyles of quite a few of these athletes is very close to the lifestyles of rappers. Take the Burress incident as example. Poorly trained, immature young athletes with unsecured firearms in nightclubs.

    • avatarAnd1 says:

      Gucci Mane shot and killed an armed robber that broke into his home. DGU by a rapper.

      • avatarCryzthormagnusian says:

        Most people involved in that came to the conclusion that it was the result of a rap feud since the “robbers” were people he’d been calling out but it was officially reported as an attempted robbery. Not the most useful example of a DGU unless you support instigating your own DGU.

        However, he was also convicted on a cocaine charge before the shooting (I thought drug convictions were a bad thing when legally obtaining a firearm) and he’s done enough since then that he will probably never legally own a firearm again.

  25. avatarscottlac says:

    In the aftermath of the unfortunate statement over the weekend, the most mindless of cliches was heard yet again: “We need more gun control.” In the aftermath of his rant during the halftime of Sunday Night Football, Mr. Bob Costas made himself look foolish by publicly announcing his fears and phobias and lack of understanding the facts.

    You know, Mr. Bob Costas is probably the victim here. People get in trouble and get publicly embarrassed all the time when speaking into a microphone. We really should look into microphone control.

    But here is what I believe. If Mr. Bob Costas had not been in possession of a microphone on that unfortunate evening, he would still be a respected sports journalist today.

  26. avatarBiofire says:

    When Bob Costas failed to interview Kim Rhode after she won her 5th consecutive medal (her 3rd gold) in the Olympics for trap/skeet and set a new world record, I thought maybe the networks didn’t want a “gun” interview on the air. But now, I see he is just anti-gun. Ms. Rhode is the first American athlete to achieve this distinction and it went completely unnoticed by Mr. Costas.

  27. avatarboardsnbikes says:

    Bob Costas wakes up every morning in a guarded environment. A private car service or limosine picks him up and drives him to his place of work, another guarded building. To gain access to Mr. Costas or his staff, one needs an appointment and a valid government id. On game days, the same car or limosine drives him to a secure stadium entrance where he does not have to wait or intermingle with the populace.

    His life does not include walking through dark parking lots searching for his car or late commutes on the subway. All attendees at work or social events are vetted by security personnel.

    See…there is no reason to have guns, in his mind. He’s in no danger–no one else in danger.

  28. avatarLance says:

    Easy solution to this problem. No one watch NBC sports.

  29. avatarSanchanim says:

    So you want to tell me if there was an organized protest, i.e. emails, phone calls, and people don’t watch any show with him on it, he would be just fine????
    If a million people emailed, and didn’t watch or threatened to not watch Monday night football, I am willing to bet NBC might just have to re-evaluate his contract..

  30. avatarPaul says:

    Funny how morons who have no logical basis for their opinions manage to define the set of “reasonable people” as those who agree with them.

  31. avatarj says:

    easy solution nbc is a joke anyways, extreme leftist and now spreading their views throughout the network. Stop watching should watch fox anyway!!!!!!!!
    hillary and obama prob gave him a stimulous check!

  32. avatarChris says:

    I love how being a gun owner makes me unreasonable.

    “I think most reasonable people think we do not have sufficient controls on the availability of guns and ammunition.”

    Dumb-ass

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