On November 13, the left-wing The New Republic ran a column denouncing CNN’s Piers Morgan as “a bottom feeder” and “mastermind at the game of cheap provocation” when it comes to gun control.
The column is titled, “Piers Morgan From Bad to Dangerous: How the CNN host discovered gun control,” and its message is clear–Morgan “is a star in the tabloid world, where shock value is news value and blatancy is currency.”
According to The New Republic, Morgan’s focus on gun control came about as a means to better his show and thereby, his ratings. They substantiate this claim by showing that Morgan has demonstrated little interest in gun control issues in years gone by.
For example, this is how Morgan reacted to news of the 1996 Dunblane school shooting, in which sixteen children and one adult were killed: “Just after 10am, the newsdesk told me there were reports of a shooting at a school in Scotland. I was not immediately that interested. Scottish stories rarely get into the English edition [of the paper] unless they are pretty spectacular.”
The New Republic does not question Morgan’s determination at this point, just his effectiveness, due in part to his habit of “rallying to his imagined fan base” to such a degree that “he barely engages with the people sitting right in front of him.”
But they do make one concession: “Every political movement needs its loudmouths and its show ponies.” In Morgan, gun control proponents have both.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins.