Following Donald Trump’s August 9 speech regarding the dangers a Hillary Clinton-nominated Supreme Court poses to the Second Amendment, media outlets around the world responded by intimating Trump was suggesting violence against Clinton.
The media allegations were so extreme, they not only insulted Trump but gun owners as well.
Breitbart News reported that Trump gave a speech in which he warned that “Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish, the Second Amendment.” He added, “By the way, and if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know. But — but I’ll tell you what. That will be a horrible day. If Hillary gets to put her judges — right now, we’re tied.”
He went on to re-emphasize how the unexpected loss of Antonin Scalia had left the court divided 4 t0 4 on guns, and pointed out that the NRA had endorsed him because they knew he would involve them in the process of picking a nominee to replace Scalia.
Clinton’s campaign manager Robby Mook seized on the first two lines of Trump’s statement and alleged Trump was suggesting “violence.” The media followed suit almost immediately.
Salon ran a column titled, “Did Trump Just Threaten Hillary? ‘Second Amendment people’ ought to influence Clinton’s SCOTUS nominees.” The Guardian ran one titled, “Trump Hints At Assassination of Hillary Clinton by gun rights supporters” and Huffington Post ran one titled, “Elizabeth Warren Fires Back at ‘Pathetic Coward’ Donald Trump After Assassination Suggestion.”
CBS New York ran a title that was a little more nuanced, but insulting to Trump and gun owners nonetheless. It was titled, “Trump: Maybe ‘Second Amendment People’ Could Stop Clinton From Picking Judges.” CBS clearly missed the context of Trump’s statement. He was not talking about “Second Amendment people” stopping Clinton or harming Clinton. Rather, he was talking as James Madison did in Federalist 46, when Madison explained that the people are armed so they can defend themselves against an overreaching government. Such action is defensive, not offensive. And the context was that the government will be in full overreach mode if Clinton is elected and gets to fill the Supreme Court with liberals.
The Hollywood Reporter quoted director Rob Reiner taking Trump’s statement out of context as well. Reiner suggested Trump should now be disqualified from running for president, saying, “It’s not as though there haven’t been political assassinations in our country, there have been. So you have to say that this kind of thing disqualifies him.”
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.