Polling about our fundamental rights

Polling about our fundamental rights

PE Bias Grade : C-

By: Allen Nitschelm on September 10, 2019 | Article Review

This is a review of the following Boston Globe Article:
Article Title Poll shows strong backing for background checks of gun buyers
Date 09/10/2019
Article Link Boston Globe ( Page A4 )
Syndicated From Washington Post
Journalist Unsigned Washington Post article
Article Summary

Media publishes results of gun poll and urges politicians to take action.

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Imagine a Washington Post-ABC News poll that asked this question: Do you favor restricting the ability of Americans to publicly burn the U.S. flag? I’ll bet that question would get 90-95% support among respondents. This is despite clear rulings that flag burning is protect speech under the First Amendment.

Similarly, if you asked people (especially young Democrats) whether “hate speech” should be criminalized or banned, I’d bet you’d see a similar result. Speech is now being defined as violence and police now investigate “hate speech” as a crime. Some private organizations keep statistics on “hate speech” showing it rising, implying that something needs to be done. But hate speech is protected speech as well, even if it is distressing. Nobody forces anyone to listen to it. If the KKK is having a march down Main Street, which is their right, don’t attend.

Today’s article implies the endorsement of mob rule when it suggests that if a majority of Americans in a poll conducted by Leftist media organizations endorse something, our politicians are morally obligated to take action in support. Fortunately, that isn’t how our democracy works. And it ignores the fact that these rights are specifically delineated in our Constitution, so even if gun-control advocates think the people are behind them, it honestly doesn’t matter. If gun confiscations and flimsy excuses to remove guns are authorized, they will be overturned by the courts.

Let me also make note of the media’s bias in covering President Trump on this issue. In response to a previous shooting, Trump signed an executive order banning “bump stocks.” They made it easier to shoot multiple rounds. The media acts like Trump has taken no steps ever because he is fearful of the NRA. This is just false. So the paragraph criticizing Trump and his previous actions on gun control is simply erroneous.

Maybe Trump is being cautious and maybe he is talking with the NRA. I would hope he would do both before reaching any conclusion that might infringe on our guaranteed civil liberties.

The Globe gets a poor bias mark for this article, in part because of their hypocrisy. They are all for protecting the First Amendment because that is in their self-interest, but the Second Amendment, not so much. They obviously don’t understand that the rights are linked together and if one manages to destroy one, the other might go too. But consistency is obviously not the Globe’s strong point.


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Rating: 3.0/10.