Discussing America’s Gun Culture on Texas Public Radio’s “The Source”

Most of the time I speak to the media I will be quoted one time and say one interesting thing. I just hope those two things overlap (as they did in a recent story by KATU in Portland, OR).

I recently appeared on Texas Public Radio’s “The Source” to talk about America’s gun culture (really, gun violence, but hey I am used to the conflation by now). Because this is a live call-in show, everything I said would be broadcast. Although I was able to speak unedited directly to the people, being on live radio made me feel more pressure to say interesting things.

There were several other guest on the show as well as callers’ questions/comments, so it is not one hour of me alone. Still, if you have time, have a listen and let me know how I did.

Screen cap of http://www.tpr.org/post/americas-gun-culture-how-did-we-get-here-and-whats-best-way-forward



    • 2 for sure. I dont think it was hostile. Everyone was allowed to speak their minds, including pro-gun callers. I also dont think it was polemical overall – I was not, the journalist from Time was not, the pollster from Pew was not. The host had a strong POV but that is why he has a talk show.

      4 for sure. When I have time I am always happy to contribute a voice that is probably going to be underrepresented


  1. Ok, maybe I am a bit hair trigger as far as polemic. Seemed to me like the host kept wanting to focus in on gun control rather than discuss gun culture, which is a culture of 100 million Americans whereas gun violence is a small subset. You made some great points in response.

    To be blunt, I thought Kauffman was full of shit not only on semiauto v auto but on the individual rights interpretation of the 2A. I don’t recall the SCOTUS ever really expounding on that issue head-on prior to Heller. If one looks at Cruickshank, Presser, or Miller, these either did not deny an individual right or at most, put restrictions on a right. Only with Heller did the Court state than an individual RKBA extended to personal defense. I may be full of shit to a legal expert but I don’t think the collective interpretation of the 2A was ever really solidified in law even if it was assumed in liberal popular culture.

    Presser precluded individuals from forming militias willy nilly but the case actually said

    “The provision in the Second Amendment to the Constitution, that “The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” is a limitation only on the power of Congress and the national government, and not of the states. But in view of the fact that all citizens capable of bearing arms constitute the reserved military force of the national government as well as in view of its general powers, the states cannot prohibit the people from keeping and bearing arms so as to deprive the United States of their rightful resource for maintaining the public security.”

    Even if the 2A evolved in its judicial interpretation, that is not unusual. A history of the evolution of the 1A is equally interesting, considering that during WW I one could be convicted and jailed for distributing antiwar literature encouraging people to resist the draft (Schenck v US). Law evolves. Hate speech and protected speech evolves. 1A studies include Hate Speech (Walker), Defending Pornography (Strossen), Fighting Words (Greenwald) and Freeing the First Amendment (Allen) and that’s just what my wife has in her library after teaching the 1A in her college rhetoric class. 2A law can evolve as well.

    There is a shitload of recent literature on the history of RKBA going back to the 12th Century Brits but frankly, little, other than what you and a few others do, on gun culture. That would have been far more interesting than simply detouring the discussion into yet another round of gun control arguments.

    Liked by 2 people

    • When Kaufman (I think) said a person could magdump a 100 round drum in 5 seconds through an AR15, I rolled my eyes. A person with a trigger finger that can twitch 20 times per second probably has a serious and unusual medical condition. It’s dishonesty like this that make it clear these people are marketers who will not let facts get in the way of pushing their agenda.


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