In response to the social media outrage over celebrities pushing gun control while making millions using guns on camera, Michael Bloomberg-funded Everytown for Gun Safety stresses that Hollywood “gunplay and real-life violence are not as intertwined as today’s tweet storms suggest.”
In other words, the vocal support for an Australia-like gun ban by celebrities like Matt Damon–Jason Bourne–is to be accepted as valid, even though he makes tens of millions shooting guns at people on film.
According to USA Today, Everytown’s Jason Rzepka referenced the ongoing “conversation” about the relationship between Hollywood gun violence and real-life gun violence, saying:
[Hollywood] content creators are quite anxious about that conversation, because they often feel guilty or wonder, ‘Am I somehow responsible?’ They are usually quite relieved when they hear that from all of our research on this subject, violence in television and film is by no means a primary culprit in our gun violence crisis in America.
USA Today quoted a study from the American Journal of Medicine (AJM) which claimed America’s “gun murder rate is 25 times the average of other developed countries,” however no link to the AJM study was provided. Rzepka added, “All [the developed countries] watch the same movies, they all watch the same TV shows, they all play the same video games. But none of those countries have a gun violence problem anywhere near what America has.”
A link for the AJM study would have been helpful because the findings–as quoted by USA Today–are countered by a Harvard study titled, “Would Banning Firearms Reduce Murder and Suicide?” Researchers for that study found the U.S. lags far behind Russia and other Eastern European nations in the gun murder rate. In fact, the researchers concluded that the burden of proof rests on those who claim more guns equal more death and violent crime, saying, “[Such proponents should] at the very least [be able] to show a large number of nations with more guns have more death and that nations that impose stringent gun controls have achieved substantial reductions in criminal violence (or suicide).”
But the focus is not really about comparing studies. Rather, the focus is Everytown’s position that allows celebrities like Julianne Moore, Liam Neeson, and Matt Damon to shoot a variety of guns–making millions at their day job–while campaigning for gun control in their off hours without the slightest tinge of a guilty conscience.
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.