Chris Evans Guns

People sometimes ask me why I spend time writing on what comic book writers, actors, or other celebrities think about public policy. I do that because the old saying is true: Politics is downstream from culture. People have a natural tendency towards the “easy wrong” instead of the “hard right,” which is why we must always keep an eye on popular culture.

Take, for instance, actor Chris Evans and Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr. Millions of Americans look up to both men, albeit for different reasons. They have enormous megaphones. They have influence. Given that, let us now examine what both men were saying in the wake of the June 12 terrorist attack in Orlando, Florida, that killed 49 and wounded 53 others.

Chris Evans, aka Captain America, said the following to nearly 4 million people:

“We need common sense gun reform. And to be clear, NO ONE IS TAKING AWAY GUNS! Just looking for COMMON SENSE reform.”

How does one define “common sense”? NBA coach Steve Kerr’s definition of “common sense” requires only “muskets” to be available to law-abiding Americans because the Bill of Rights is allegedly “outdated.”

Steve Kerr

Here is what Mr. Kerr said while appearing on the “TK Show” withTim Kawakami on June 24 (Keep in mind that his own father was assassinated by Islamic terrorists in 1984 while working in Beirut):

“As a basketball coach, I’m not really, you know, I don’t often get political. If you don’t mind, I just want to say when 90 percent of our country wants background checks on gun purchases, and we’ve got our Senate and our House not only voting it down, but using the Bill or Rights as a reason for people to have rights to carry these automatic weapons — we’re getting murdered every day at an alarming rate — I just have to get this off my chest. …

Let’s have some checks. It’s easier to get a gun than it is a driver’s license. And it’s insane. And as somebody who has had a family member shot and killed, it just devastates me every time I read about this stuff, like what happened in Orlando, and then it’s even more devastating to see the government just cowing to the NRA and going to this totally outdated Bill of Rights, right to bear arms, you know, if you want to own a musket, fine — but come on.”

On one hand Mr. Evans says “no one is taking away guns” while on the other Mr. Kerr tries to convince millions that the Bill of Rights is “totally outdated.”

Marvel’s “Captain America” knows full well that lawmakers in the U.S. House and Senate exist who agree with Mr. Kerr, but yet he still abuses the caps-lock button with “NO ONE IS TAKING AWAY GUNS!”

The Warriors’ Mr. Kerr must know that “automatic” weapons are nearly impossible to own in the U.S. outside of military and law enforcement communities, but yet he uses the term anyway.

When faced with objective facts — a.) people with power and influence do want to take guns away, and b.) more Americans died on U.S. soil by Islamic terrorists using planes as giant missiles (2,996) than by “automatic” weapons (zero) — the response by pop-culture celebrities is to lie.

If you are interested in taking the “easy wrong,” then listen to men like Chris Evans and Steve Kerr on gun control.

If you are interested in taking the “hard right,” then look for people who are not so wedded to an ideology that lying to forward the cause trumps objective reality. You’ll be glad you did.

Editor’s Note: Hat tip to Colossus of Rhodey for the heads up on Chris Evans’ tweet.

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

16 comments

  1. Both of them should focus on what they’re being paid to do: acting and coaching basketball, and keep their mouths shut on politics. It’s rather apparent that neither of them know what they’re talking about. To me, the Constitution is as relevant today as it was when it was first drafted. Only someone with a dislike of the country and the principles it was founded on could call it “outdated.”

    1. “Both of them should focus on what they’re being paid to do: acting and coaching basketball, and keep their mouths shut on politics.”

      Celebrities often adopt the Jon Stewart approach, which is to try and be taken seriously for their political views while simultaneously giving off the, “Hey, I’m just an actor, coach, comedian, etc.” vibe when pushback follows. They want to have their cake and eat it, too.

      “It’s rather apparent that neither of them know what they’re talking about. To me, the Constitution is as relevant today as it was when it was first drafted. Only someone with a dislike of the country and the principles it was founded on could call it ‘outdated.'”

      The “musket” line is pretty bizarre when you follow the idea to its logical conclusion. Maybe we should just do away with the First Amendment since the founding fathers had no conception of the internet, Steve. The First Amendment is “totally outdated.”

      We’re focusing on universal principles and Mr. Kerr wants to tie the Bill of Rights to technology that existed in the late 1700s. Yeesh. How embarrassing.

    2. “Celebrities often adopt the Jon Stewart approach, which is to try and be taken seriously for their political views while simultaneously giving off the, “Hey, I’m just an actor, coach, comedian, etc.” vibe when pushback follows. They want to have their cake and eat it, too.”

      I’ve noticed that as well. And they always have sycophants who come to their defense, too, who say things like “Don’t you like free speech? They have a right to speak out.” Yes, they do, but as the saying goes, people are entitled to their opinions, but not their own facts. Celebrities like Evans and Kerr truly live in la-la land. As I said, they should focus on acting and coaching basketball and stay out of politics.

      “We’re focusing on universal principles and Mr. Kerr wants to tie the Bill of Rights to technology that existed in the late 1700s. Yeesh. How embarrassing.”

      It just goes to show that Kerr doesn’t really know what he’s talking about. That’s a pretty typical fallacy you see the gun grabbers use. They always bring up the musket line. My future brother-in-law (that is, my sister’s fiance) once chastised someone for owning a gun and made a crack about phallic symbols and how said gun owner “didn’t measure up in bed.” You see the Freudian crap thrown around quite a bit, too.

      It’s also ironic that Kerr wants to ban guns in the wake of the Orlando massacre, when his father was killed in Islamists in the 1980s in Lebanon.

  2. I thought Scott Adams’s take was surprisingly insightful:

    http://blog.dilbert.com/post/146307088451/why-gun-control-cant-be-solved-in-the-usa

    “On average, Democrats (that’s my team*) use guns for shooting the innocent. We call that crime.

    On average, Republicans use guns for sporting purposes and self-defense. … So it seems to me that gun control can’t be solved because Democrats are using guns to kill each other – and want it to stop – whereas Republicans are using guns to defend against Democrats. Psychologically, those are different risk profiles. And you can’t reconcile those interests, except on the margins. For example, both sides might agree that rocket launchers are a step too far. But Democrats are unlikely to talk Republicans out of gun ownership because it comes off as ‘Put down your gun so I can shoot you.’”

    I hadn’t considered it that way before, but it makes sense.

    Generally speaking the left has abandoned the concept of self-control, so they end up wanting the state to step in and stop them from doing bad things. As the Bible tells us, if you refuse to practice self-control, you’ll engage in all kinds of disgusting behavior. So they need an increasingly intrusive state, ending in some kind of 1984 nightmare state, for the government to be able to control them completely enough that they won’t do any bad things.

    On the other side, the right wants the government to leave them alone so they can take care of things for themselves. It’s a largely unbridgeable gap.

    1. “On average, Republicans use guns for sporting purposes and self-defense. … So it seems to me that gun control can’t be solved because Democrats are using guns to kill each other – and want it to stop – whereas Republicans are using guns to defend against Democrats. Psychologically, those are different risk profiles. And you can’t reconcile those interests, except on the margins. For example, both sides might agree that rocket launchers are a step too far. But Democrats are unlikely to talk Republicans out of gun ownership because it comes off as ‘Put down your gun so I can shoot you.'”

      This is kind of an amazing analysis of what is going on. I don’t think that you could talk to 10,000 Democrats about gun control and witness one of them to naturally bring this up.

  3. Captain America is “proud” of the sit-in. A bunch of Democrats are basically using the same tactic that spoiled children use when demanding that their parents buy them a new toy or video game at Walmart. And what is it that the brats want? They want the government to repeal the Bill of Rights and replace it with secret lists.

    “No one is taking away guns. Just looking for common sense reform.” And if you like your doctor and your insurance policy, you can keep them. And if Iran builds nuclear weapons, automatic sanctions will be imposed.

    We’ve been down this road before. The anti-gun activists look reasonable, saying they only want to ban certain types of weapons. (Then they make the definition of an “assault weapon” or a “Saturday night special” so broad and vague that it can be interpreted however they want.) Then when the ban on “automatic” rifles and twenty-round magazines fails to prevent the next mass murder, they claim that the ban “didn’t go far enough.” So we need to ban bolt action rifles and ten-round magazines. And so on.

    Agree that saying the Second Amendment is obsolete because they didn’t have AR-15’s in 1791 is the same as saying that the First Amendment is obsolete because they didn’t have TV, radio, or the internet back then, either. Trouble is, liberals hate the First Amendment, too. Steve Kerr complained about the “totally outdated Bill of Rights.” Not just 2A, the entire Bill of Rights. And “Progressives” frequently call for laws against “hate speech.” (“Hate” meaning any disagreement with them about anything.) (After San Bernardino, the AG threatened to “take action” if anyone said anything that could be interpreted-or misinterpreted-as “anti-Muslim rhetoric.”)

    (Speaking of “common sense reform,” how about some reasonable immigration control, like vetting immigrants before allowing them to enter the US? Maybe Tashfeen Malik should not have been allowed to obtain a visa after she openly posted pro-jihad comments on social media. But if you bring that up, you are a racist, Islamophobe, blah, blah, blah.)

    (For that matter, Omar Mateen openly made threats and behaved suspiciously, but nothing was done about it, even after he stalked and threatened a co-worker who reported him. If he had been arrested and prosecuted, he would have been in prison instead of committing mass murder. Even if he had been released on parole, he would have been a convicted felon, unable to legally buy guns. But you can’t prosecute a Muslim stalker; that would be Islamophobia and anti-Muslim rhetoric.)

    There is no basis for communication with the progressives. They blame Christians and Republicans for the actions of a practicing Muslim and registered Democrat who pledged allegiance to ISIS. And they are uninterested in any rational debate or discussion. They are marching in lock step, parroting the PC party line, helping Obama exploit the tragedy to further the agenda. And they chant their mantras (“NRA,” “AR-15”) to divert attention from the dhimmitude and political correctness that have been enabling crime and terrorism for years.

    1. “We’ve been down this road before. The anti-gun activists look reasonable, saying they only want to ban certain types of weapons. (Then they make the definition of an ‘assault weapon’ or a “Saturday night special” so broad and vague that it can be interpreted however they want.) Then when the ban on “automatic” rifles and twenty-round magazines fails to prevent the next mass murder, they claim that the ban “didn’t go far enough.” So we need to ban bolt action rifles and ten-round magazines. And so on.”

      I’m glad that you brought up the Saturday night special. I think it’s an excellent point to raise. Anti-gun activists know nothing about guns, so they really just find themselves moving to whatever is scariest to them at any given moment. They just keep saying, “Ban [insert scary weapon x]” and then trying to frame their fear of the year as “common sense.”

  4. I am always floored by those in Hollywood who are against the second amendment, but surround themselves with armed security and make millions each year from glorifying gun violence in movies. Due to their luxurious and insulated way of living, many of them probably don’t understand the significance of gun rights. They don’t live in the world that ordinary citizens such as myself live in, where we have to take personal responsibility for our safety. I don’t want them trying to overreach into my life and limit my rights.

  5. The second amendment debate is a fascinating little ouroboros. Folks want to take away the second amendment because the second amendment exists so we can shoot people who want to take away the second amendment.

    1. “The second amendment debate is a fascinating little ouroboros. Folks want to take away the second amendment because the second amendment exists so we can shoot people who want to take away the second amendment.”

      I really need to work on getting my darn book published… I have an “ouroboros” scene that you might appreciate, given your comment. In short, I agree with you! 🙂

  6. Did these guys use computers or other electronic media? Because we know the 1st Amendment mandates we can only use quills.

  7. To Chris and Steve here…and really most professional entertainers of some stripe, ‘gun people’ are a set of strange and dangerous people from some part of the country they want to avoid. They are elitists and they look down on you little people, either by choice or habit. Chris’s life, family, and possesions are protected, by his wealth, armed guards and an industry that protects its assets. Chris doesn’t care that we, the hoi polloi do not have the same protections and that his allies seek to disarm every law abiding gun owner. To Chris, we are vague murder statistics he doesn’t really know, but must be bad cause his hollywood liberal buddies say so.

    1. “Chris’s life, family, and possesions are protected, by his wealth, armed guards and an industry that protects its assets. Chris doesn’t care that we, the hoi polloi do not have the same protections and that his allies seek to disarm every law abiding gun owner.”

      Is there some sort of weird tone-deaf machine that all Hollywood actors must sit in once they reach a certain level of fame? It’s so weird to see people who are regularly protected by top-notch (armed) security become indignant over others who fiercely defend the 2nd Amendment.

    1. “Chris Evans needs to stick to acting, because he clearly knows very little about the ‘gun control’ debate.”

      I think he knows much more than he lets on. 😉

      At this point in time there are basically two options:

      1. Guys like Chris Evans are fine with lying because they’ve adopted an “ends justify the means” approach.
      2. Willful ignorance. Every fact that does not adhere to his adopted ideology is immediately brushed aside to keep his worldview intact.

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