Fox News host Laura Ingraham spent her show last night talking about the horrific shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida that left 17 people dead. But she devoted six full minutes of her program to just how “safe” the AR-15 assault rifle is. Seriously.
Ingraham, complete with an Ash Wednesday cross on her forehead, talked with her guest Aaron Cohen about how guns are “very dangerous in the hands of the wrong person,” but said that guns like the AR-15 are actually very “safe.”
“You have a less likelihood of sporadic fire or hitting innocent people if you’re using it for home defense because it shoots really straight,” Cohen said of the AR-15, extolling the features of the weapon.
“So it’s actually a very safe weapon, it’s easier to shoot than a pistol,” Cohen continued.
The AR-15 is the same rifle that was used in yesterday’s shootings in Florida, not to mention the shootings in Aurora, Colorado in 2012 (12 dead, 70 injured), Newtown, Connecticut in 2012 (20 children between the ages of 6 and 7-years-old dead, 6 adults dead), San Bernardino, California in 2015 (14 dead, 22 seriously wounded), Sutherland Springs, Texas (26 dead, 20 injured) and Las Vegas (58 dead, 851 injured).
“It didn’t take him long to go right to gun control,” Ingraham said after airing a clip of Democratic Senator Chris Murphy. Murphy correctly pointed out on the US Senate floor yesterday that these shootings simply don’t happen in countries where guns are tightly regulated.
But Ingraham would have you believe that any restrictions on the sale of the AR-15 in America would be silly, because the gun is so wonderful.
“If you’re not trained, and if you have a criminal disposition—a violent disposition—it can be turned into a killing machine. But [Senator] Chris Murphy wants to make it all about the weapons,” Ingraham said.
To say that the AR-15 can “be turned into” a killing machine is wholly disingenuous. The AR-15 is a killing machine. That’s literally what it is designed and manufactured to do, kill people. But she and her guest kept insisting during the nauseating segment that it’s ultimately a perfectly safe thing for Americans to keep in their homes.
“There is a mental health epidemic here, which is being confused for a gun problem,” Cohen said on Fox News with a straight face.
“Where are the parents?” Cohen asked, presumably about the parents of the alleged gunman Nikolas Cruz.
You can watch the entire Fox News segment on YouTube if you have the stomach for it right now.
If it feels like we’ve been here all before, that’s because we have. It’s hard not to feel hopeless as this happens over and over again. And it’s hard not to get angry at people like Ingraham who go on TV to assure you that it’s not about the guns, it’s about this abstract notion of “mental health.”
The rest of the world has plenty of people with mental health problems. But no other country watches their children regularly slaughtered by guns on TV the way that America does.