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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

An “Automatic” Gaffe

In a permanent media maelstrom seemingly stuck in “Whatever!” mode, we guess it’s no surprise when important details wind up seriously wrong. Such is certainly the case when New York magazine, the Cleveland Sun-Times and even the UK’s Daily Mail report that “automatic weapons” were used in the Dallas Police Headquarters attack.

This supposed upping of the ante in firearms abuse was the result of unvetted bystander reports. It was also denied multiple times by Dallas police, all the way up to Chief David Brown. In other words, not first-, not second-, but at best third-hand information was reported as fact by the so-called “mainstream” media.

This particular error is a depressingly constant feature of media and political discourse on guns and crime. And given how well it feeds the anti-gun agenda, it seems a bit naïve to write it off every time as “just a mistake.”