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“I’ve long thought that someone should offer comprehensive firearms training for the Fourth Estate. Well, someone has finally stepped up to fill that niche, and his name is Michael Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York City.” That bulletin comes from Herald-Tribune’s Lee Williams. What could possibly go wrong? Hizzoner figures the best way to report on “gun violence” is to make sure journos know more about guns and the issues surrounding them. And who better to fill those skulls full of mush than…Everytown for Gun Safety? . . .

So he’s made a very generous gift to the wonderfully named Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma to invite media members and shed a little light on the issues of guns in American society. All on Mayor Mike’s dime. And presented from his…unique…perspective.

Here’s the problem as the Dart Center sees it:

When it comes to reporting on guns, local and regional reporters bear the primary burden. They are often trapped into narrow deadline-driven beats with little time to develop expert sources, investigative angles or broader perspectives. And newsrooms and news managers are unprepared for the overwhelming, spasmodic tragedy of mass shootings. As a consequence, incidents of gun violence are too often viewed in isolation as random, inevitable tragedy rather than part of a wider phenomenon with complex causes but amenable to prevention efforts.

Geddit? It’s all about context. What busy ink-stained wretches need is someone to spoon feed them the right information.

The workshop, funded by Everytown for Gun Safety, will offer independent expert briefings and specialized reporting skills training to enhance the practical ability of journalists to report on guns and gun violence knowledgeably, ethically and effectively. The workshop will cover such topics as state and federal gun laws; patterns of gun sales and gun trafficking; national trends and polling; education and prevention initiatives; social, economic and public health impacts; and special populations (e.g. children and youth, women and returning veterans.)

And we’re sure that the reporters, editors, news directors, photographers, producers, and bloggers will hear a wide range of “independent” viewpoints and opinions during their two-day Bloomberg-financed junket to Phoenix. Surely, among all the civilian disarmers, social justice warriors, victims’ rights advocates public health officials and gun-averse peace officers, attendees will also hear from an NRA spokesman, someone from the NSSF and a gun safety trainer. Right? Won’t they?

The workshop will:

  • Serve as a forum for improving journalists’ knowledge of guns and gun violence, and the implications of public policies like background check requirements

  • Explore new research, reporting ideas and best practices with leading public health and policy experts

  • Confront challenges — and identify opportunities — that exist for local journalists pursuing these stories with limited resources

  • Provide practical tools to enable journalists to successfully produce meaningful stories on guns and gun violence.

So journalists will be able to travel to Phoenix – on Everytown’s dime – to get a two-day indoctrination lecture on “gun violence” and the approved way to present it for public consumption. For maximum effect. From one side of the debate. Under the auspices of the the august Columbia Journalism School. Because journalism.

As Williams writes:

Problems with this? You bet. Issues like transparency, objectivity and bias come to mind.

I wonder how many editors would send reporters to a similar workshop sponsored by the National Rifle Association or the National Shooting Sports Foundation, even though the former has been providing firearms training for around 143 years.

Most editors would never allow one side of any contentious debate to provide coverage tips and techniques to their staff.  But when it comes to guns, it’s okay — the double standard is allowable.

Disgusting.

This “workshop” isn’t journalism training.

It’s proselytizing.

 

67 Responses to Everytown for Gun Safety Sponsors Journalist Education on “Gun Violence”

  1. Does this mean reporters will know the difference between a Glock and a revolver, or an AK and an AR after taking the class?

    • They’re all automatic assault weapons anyway, why try and identify them?

      Oh, and that pink LCP? Definitely a toy, see, it has colors.

      • NOT if Josh Sugarman has his way. over 20 years ago he advocated using the confusion between semi and FULL auto weapons to get the ignorant sheeple to accept bans on ARs.

        Ray from Bloombergia

  2. Wow, this is some really evil stuff. Everytown is literally trying to buy and brainwash the press, even when most already agree with the statist stance

    • “So journalists will be able to travel to Phoenix – on Everytown’s dime…”

      Maybe RF, Dan, and Nick should go… hell, I’d go… just to be the proverbial turd in Hizzoner’s punch bowl.

    • This is a REAL OPPORTUNITY here. Reporters will actually learn about how firearms work? That semiauto is not full auto, that an AR is no more dangerous than a Remmy 7400, that modern guns never “go off”? Do we have any reporters who can attend as agents provocateurs? Too bad I don’t work for a newspaper any more!

      We need to hook this program up with some firearms trainers and have them run the reporters through the paces. Undoubtedly, a few nuggets about the 500,000 – 3M DGUs that happen every year may sneak in there before Bloomie can grab the mic away. Some reporters — especially the gals — may actually like the shootin’!

  3. Material you should expect to see hanging on the wall at this reeducation class:

    1) A poster with every firearm from a flintlock to a rail gun with a caption “These are assault weapons”.

    2) A diagram on how to work in catch phrases to increase their creds. Catch phrases like:
    – “I support the 2A (interchangeable with any other right that may be in the way of utopia), but…”
    – “My (insert relative here) owns guns and he/she supports common sense gun laws.”
    – “I go hunting, but…”
    – “I respect the traditions of firearms in this country, but….”
    – “Nobody wants to ban/take your guns…”

    3) Pictures of Shannon with quotes on what kind of action moms are demanding.

    4) Lots of sad-looking children.

    etc

  4. Do you think that at any time during this “workshop” that the myth of the nonexistant .9mm firearm and ammo will be corrected?

    • More likely the ignorant teaching the propagandists.

      Key seminars to be featured during the 2 day:
      Diana Degette on how high capacity clips function. (No there not all used up yet)

      Michael Bloomberg on semi-automatic vs automatic (remember his quote when he said all AR 15s you pull the trigger and ta ta ta ta ta ta ta. Then when called on it responded “whatever”).

      Key note Retired Representative McCarthy on firearms accessories like barrel shrouds and shoulder things that go up.

    • Just the press can “apply”. I am sure they want to screen the participants to make sure they are getting their money’s worth and ensure their message will be spread far and wide. This is just an attempt to buy press, coverage, media.

      Application Information

      The deadline for applications is February 27, 2015 at 6 p.m. EST.

      All applicants will be notified with a decision on their application by March 6, 2015.

      To apply, please email Kate Black (kate.black@dartcenter.org) with your resume or CV, full contact information (name, address, city, state, zip, phone number and email address) and a one-page letter of interest that:
      Describes how and why this workshop is relevant to you and your work;
      Identifies three issues around guns or gun violence of particular interest to you;
      Explains a challenge you have encountered in pursuing a story on this topic (or a related one); and
      Briefly outlines a possible story you might pursue on the topic.

      If you have any questions or need additional information, please email Kate Black at kate.black@dartcenter.org.
      – See more at: http://dartcenter.org/content/apply-now-southwest-workshop-on-covering-guns-gun-violence#.VLVe-Md0y73

      • Sure sounds like they are vetting attendees–what other reason would they have for asking for resumes? Maybe Ms. Miller wold qualify–she has done more investigative reporting about guns and gun laws (just for D.C.) than most reporters have done in their entire careers.

  5. Oh good, a class on descriminitory reporting. Got to make sure you get the right amount of self righteousness and insulting distain in your propaganda, I mean, reporting, for a group of people engaged in a legal activity.

    I bet they’ll give out some sweet armbands so everyone will know they attended.

  6. One of the most frustrating experiences of my life was being invited as a speaker for a continuing education seminar on the subject of gun ownership. The “students” at this seminar were attorneys. I was one of two speakers on the “pro-rights” side, while the “anti-rights” side was dominated by Ceasefire and a state legislator with strong feelings on the subject — and a screening of “Bowling For Columbine”.

    I tried to get them to screen instead “The Search For The Second Amendment”, a far more balanced presentation on the subject with actual information instead of a propaganda puff piece full of lies and misinformation, but they refused. These “classes” are little more than propaganda indoctrinations, relying on emotional appeals and misinformation to “teach” lawyers — and in this case, journalists — exactly what slanted view to hold.

    It’s also pretty much impossible to convince these people to change their views. Unlike a true critical thinker, who will change their position when the facts upon which their stance are proven or disproven, these people refuse to even admit that there’s the possibility that they could be wrong, so it’s a given that nothing you say or do will change their stance. Even if you laboriously and rigorously prove, through study and experiment, that their belief is based upon incorrect information — that they’re WRONG — they will not accept it. The typical answer is “but I don’t FEEL that what you’re saying is true. I FEEL that THIS is true.” And with that, their minds are closed, practically ossified into believing an untrue thing.

    It’s scary that propagandists like the Demanding Mommies and Everyclown are engaging in this kind of slanted “education”. It’s not actually education, it’s indoctrination.

    • Yes!

      I wish I had read your comment before posting mine below. Your comment is right on and a much better articulated description of the insidious, deceptive and indoctrinational goals of Bloomberg and his various anti-liberty co-conspirators’ disingenuous offer to educate journalists (and others) on all things pertaining to guns, gun ownership, the Second Amendment, and gun crime.

    • Most of their “message” is just of the ice to eskimos/coal to Newcastle variety however. Their BS is not actually gaining converts (see the increase in % population that believes in personal ownership, carry, etc) and our story is not going to bring the wackos back to the light. No point in point is worrying about it. We’re winning. If this is more due to the efforts of Conservatives or due to the antics of the leftards I am not sure. Chicked or egg.

  7. In other words, Bloomberg wants to train reporters in the proper anti-gun narrative and rhetorical line supported by ‘his’ particular details and commentary which can then be presented as background for any news stories that involve a shooting.

    Condition the uninformed!

    Brainwashing much!

  8. Wait- They’re doing this in Phoenix? A city where people walk around armed (openly or concealed) all the damned time and *gasp* nothing much happens? Is it because it’s a safer city than where the anti-gunners are from? Or maybe it’s because it’s hard to show SCARY ARs in states where they are banned?

  9. I know you had to paraphrase a bit but even with the omissions there is something missing from that list of what “The workshop will:”

    Responsibility.

    They list a bunch of things about guns moving around from place to place and person to person but I don’t see even a hint of the idea that the shooter should be reported as the responsible party in whatever tragedy is being reported on.

  10. Probably tired of declaring themselves experts then being called out on basic facts (no automatic and semi-automatic are not interchangeable)

  11. When it comes to reporting reporting on guns, local and regional reporters are by nature lazy bastards ……

    Fixed it.

  12. Herald-Tribune writer Williams is wrong:

    “Most editors would never allow one side of any contentious debate to provide coverage tips and techniques to their staff. But when it comes to guns, it’s okay — the double standard is allowable.”

    This statement is false. Yes, editors likely wouldn’t send reporters to a NSSF or NRA presentation, but they allow one side of a contentious debate to do this all the time.

    I guarantee you that the National Gay and Lesbian Journalists Association regularly holds seminars on how gay marriage should be covered. The National Association of Hispanic Journalists regularly holds seminars on how to cover immigration. Et cetera. Ad infinitum.

  13. Two points from their agenda seem particularly problematic to me:

    Explore new research, reporting ideas and best practices with leading public health and policy experts
    Hugely frightening. I would fully expect that the “leading public health and policy experts” will exert pressure on the journos about the essential role they play in educating the public about the national epidemic of gun violence. Or some similar nonsense.

    Confront challenges — and identify opportunities — that exist for local journalists pursuing these stories with limited resources
    This seems to be code for “we’ll supply you with ready-to-use talking points, cooked statistics and other ‘background’ materials because we want to take advantage of the fact that newsrooms are understaffed and have fired all the senior people who actually understand the issues, and you, as an ambitious young journalist, want to win a Pulitzer and will take shortcuts to do so, including copy-pasting unvetted material from a source with a social agenda.”

    It’s all too easy to paint the NRA as a bunch of extremists, and the antis use that word all the time to describe anyone who doesn’t agree with their position, their agenda, and their made-up hysteria. Don’t believe me? Just try pointing out the fallacy of the so-called epidemic of gun violence, and the truth about the dramatic, sustained reduction in shooting deaths. You will be shouted down and labeled as a “gun extremist” before you can even make your point (which will be ignored).

    All of which underscores an incredibly important point: This workshop is part of the “national conversation on guns” they keep saying they want to have. You are not welcome in that conversation.

    • Just for grins, why not apply to go? The concept of a gay conservative is probably so alien to them, you and Gwen may pass their vetting process.

      Then wire yourself with concealed cameras and microphones…

      And use your POTG imagination.

      • That’s a good point, and a very smart one. An inside look at that convention might be very useful to us. emfourty could talk to RF as well, see if he’d be willing to compensate him for his time in exchange for the information.

    • Ha! That would be great, assuming your buddies made their sexual orientation clear in some manner. Pretty sure the liberal’s heads would explode, torn between the desire to point out that they are child-murdering scum for carrying guns, versus their idea that being of a different race/gender identity/sexual orientation/physical sex makes one superior to white cisgendered heterosexual males and above reproach. Seriously, if you can put it together, you should absolutely do that.

  14. The phrase “develop experts,” irks me. It sounds as if the journalists are manufacturing their “experts” rather than finding real, substantiated subject matter experts. Also, how do you call 50.8% of the population (women), special? Doesn’t that actually make women the slight majority?

    US Census Bureau 2013 data: http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/00000.html

    • “The phrase “develop experts,” irks me. It sounds as if the journalists are manufacturing their “experts” rather than finding real, substantiated subject matter experts.”

      Yeah…’develop experts’ reminds me of Rebecca Bond, et al, that think that just because they have either

      (a) just discovered the concept of “gun safety”

      or

      (b) figure out a way to use “gun safety” as a meme to sell their brand of political/cultural control

      that no one in the history of firearms has considered “gun safety.” All this “we need to have a conversation” stuff is bogus fluff…that conversation has been going on very, very long time.

      Manufactured experts, acting like old (established) concepts are “new”, etc…fits an Alinsky-esque pattern. Too many people think history began the day they were born (or became politically aware, etc).

      Fits Rule 2: Just redefine the terms of the discussion so your “experts” are experts, or at least the ones that are heard.

      Fits Rule 3: Act like what the enemy has expertise in does not exist until your experts bring it up and make it an issue.

      Fits Rule 4 directly.

  15. Seriously we need to act.

    Get a bunch of people from the firearms community – a variety of journalists/bloggers at different websites targeting specific/general audiences of varying stature – to apply for this.

    Have them all apply. See if anyone gets admitted. Go from there.

  16. Some Pink Pistols groups invite journalists to shoot with them at least once a year. There must be a PP group in Phoenix; they should organize an actual shooting event for the attendees.

  17. Sounds like it’s basically a strip club with a poster that says “all guns are assault weapons”.

    Job done.

  18. So, who is going to be in the area at that time and would like to do an open-carry protest of the event?

    • Shannon would like nothing better. Don’t forget that this is the group that lumped “open carry incidents” and actual shootings into one statistic … either Kroeger or Starbucks; can’t recall which.

      An OC demonstration would send all those reporters into an absolute panic. At a minimum, it would allow the event facilitators to stoke unfounded hysteria by asking something like, “OK, you elitist urban reporters who wouldn’t know a rubber bullet from a foam earplug, how safe do you feel with those assault weapons just outside the door?”

      • Now think about this. What if the Pink Pistols came dressed up fabulously and did it? Are they seriously about to be scared of a bunch of gay people with firearms?

        I can only imagine how quickly any response would backfire against them. We can call them homophobic if they say anything and it would likely stick, lol.

  19. Don’t forget – nude massages are available during the breaks and after lunch, and the evening mixer features a naked Jello wrestling match.

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