The Outdoor Wire has printed a response from now former G&A technical editor Dick Metcalf to his firing. In short, Dick’s upset. The controversy has made him fear for both the First and Second Amendments. And when it comes right down to it, all of you and your “voices from cyberspace” are to blame. Have at it:
When the present controversy erupted a week ago, I was asked by Guns & Ammo/InterMedia management to write the following “clarification and elaboration” on the December Backstop column for use on the G&A website. I did so, but the decision was made to wait and see how the situation developed. I was also asked to hold off on making any comments in any other forum, and no other response appeared in any G&A/IMO forum at all. Then, after Paul Erhardt’s column appeared in the Shooting Wire yesterday, IMO was contacted by two major firearms industry manufacturers, stating that they would do no further business with IMO if it continued with its present personnel structure. Within hours, Jim Bequette resigned as Editor of Guns & Ammo, and my relationship with all IMO publications and TV shows was terminated . . .
How do I feel about that? Disappointed. If a respected editor can be forced to resign and a controversial writer’s voice be shut down by a one-sided social-media and internet outcry, virtually overnight, simply because they dared to open a discussion or ask questions about a politically sensitive issue . . . then I fear for the future of our industry, and for our Cause. Do not 2nd Amendment adherents also believe in Freedom of Speech? Do Americans now fear open and honest discussion of different opinions about important Constitutional issues? Do voices from cyberspace now control how and why business decisions are made?
From its inception as “Cooper’s Corner” in 1986 the back page column in Guns & Ammo has been intentionally designed to address controversial issues, and to invite reader response. By that standard, the December edition certainly succeeded–some might say, too well. But our intention was to provoke a debate, not to incite a riot (which is illegal under laws regulating the 1st Amendment).
Read the remainder of Metcalf’s response at shootingwire.com.