British journalist and television host Piers Morgan who is currently working in the United States, is facing a petition to deport him. Many of us over here in the UK are bemused by this petition, the sheer arrogance and hypocrisy involved is truly breathtaking. So what hideous crime is he accused of that merits this cry for deportation? He has been aggressively arguing for tighter gun control measures in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting.
The petition, which was begun on Dec 21 in Texas, accuses him of being “engaged in a hostile attack” against the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, which guarantees the right to bear arms.
It states: “We demand that Mr. Morgan be deported immediately for his effort to undermine the Bill of Rights and for exploiting his position as a national network television host to stage attacks against the rights of American citizens.”
In an acrimonious television interview five days after the Sandy Hook shooting Mr Morgan called his guest Larry Pratt, the executive director of Gun Owners for America, an “idiot.”
Mr Pratt was arguing that America should have more not less guns. Mr Morgan said to him: “You’re an unbelievably stupid man, aren’t you? You have absolutely no coherent argument. You don’t actually give a damn about the gun murder rate in America.”
So what exactly is the second amendment? (Sorry US folks, you do know, but quite a few Brits don’t). It reads …
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Being divine prophets, what the founding fathers really meant was that individuals should have the right to own automatic weapons … right? This new divine right is now hammered in stone and must never be changed even if the majority decide that banning automatic weapons would be a good idea. OK, that is perhaps a bit of straw-man, daft enough to not even merit demolition, but it really does come across that way sometimes. What is clear is that the motivation behind this amendment at the time of drafting was to enable the people to organize a militia system, to resist tyranny, to enforce the law, and to establish the right to self-defence.
Well, my intent is not to get deep into this specific debate, but rather to draw out one key point, Mr Morgan is not in any way attacking the rights of US citizens, he is specifically arguing against assault weapons and is also pointing out that those that advocate for more weapons, not less, are being “unbelievably stupid” and have “absolutely no coherent argument”. If his stance is wrong and there is a coherent argument to be deployed, then why not deploy that. Instead they simply wish to silence a voice telling them some rather uncomfortable truths.
Morgan does often say and do things that I very much disagree with, and he can at times excel at being a complete plonker. For example, under his watch as the editor of the UK’s Sun newspaper some truly reprehensible bits truly tacky journalism took place, but on this issue I believe that he actually has it right. Here is the specific debate that triggered the petition ..
It is more than a tad ironic to find that the name of the chap he is debating with above is Pratt, because he truly does incarnate that name.
However, the one thing that truly broke my irony meter is the thought that those who think Mr Morgan is attacking the entire second amendment and wish to deport him for saying things they do not agree with, have apparently forgotten all about the first amendment, the one all about freedom of the press and freedom of speech.