The Norman Transcript

Columns

December 8, 2012

Armed and dangerous

NORMAN — Those of you who believe you should be able to “pack heat” or whatever expression people use to describe carrying a deadly weapon are about to get really heated up by what comes next: Bravo Bob Costas.

Congratulations for using your forum on NBC’s Sunday night “Football in America” broadcast and having the courage to be direct about the nation’s “gun culture” when commenting on the tragic murder-suicide of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher and his girlfriend, Kasandra Perkins.

For the record, all that Bob stated was the obvious, that “If he didn’t possess/own a gun, he and Kasandra would be alive today.” But that was enough to cause apoplexy among those who believe in a somehow-sacred right to possess their instruments of death.

The right wing has gone ballistic. On Fox News, host Brian Kilmeade angrily wondered whether it was “appropriate for Costas to make his remarks,” or whether he abused his position by taking advantage of a TV platform that amplifies his individual opinion to the point that it reached 20 million people. In other words, he should keep his points of view abouteverything but football to himself.

Actually, it’s an arguable position. Why should we care what a celebrity thinks other than being surprised that he or she really thinks? Why should those who are nonbelievers be forced to watch Tim Tebow and so many other athletes demonstrate their religious fervor each and every time they score a touchdown or hit a home run? Why should we really care which stars supported Barack Obama or Mitt Romney, or which ones come to Washington to testify before Congress about their favorite cause?

But we do care about what they have to say, and if that’s the case, Costas was entirely appropriate when he took a stand. How pathetic it is that our political leaders, among them President Obama, are so timid in the face of the gun lobby kowtowing to those who have made America’s love affair with guns a murderous obsession.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • Norman Forward builds momentum

    The quiet campaign to build momentum for a citywide public works project is beginning to attract some attention....

    July 20, 2014

  • Tax those trees out of here

    I read your editorial “Pesky red cedars” in the Norman Transcript of Tuesday, July 15, 2014. I have attended two meetings where the problem of the eastern red cedar trees was discussed. Because of the drought conditions in Oklahoma, we ...

    July 20, 2014

  • Make gun safety a health issue

    Quick, are you more likely to die by a bullet or in a car crash? Common sense would seem to suggest the latter. Cars are everywhere. We are an auto-obsessed nation. To be American is to drive — everywhere. Teenagers itch to get behind the ...

    July 20, 2014

  • They just want to be free ... maybe

    Massoud Barzani, president of Iraq’s semiautonomous Kurdistan region, rattled many cages this month when he announced in parliament that the KRG would be moving ahead soon on a referendum on independence from Iraq. If Kurdistan goes ahead ...

    July 20, 2014

  • Congress must accelerate solutions

    Congress has roused itself, at the last minute, and now is scrambling to save the Highway Trust Fund. Better late than never. Better still will be if lawmakers agree to come up with the money to prevent the fund from becoming insolvent. ...

    July 20, 2014

  • The heavy burden of college aid

    Return on investment is a clear measure of what you get for your money. Incredibly, the federal government doesn’t apply that simple concept to the $137 billion a year it spends on college financial aid....

    July 19, 2014

  • James bears weight of Cav’s dreams

    LeBron James has done it all on a basketball court. He’s a great scorer, rugged defender, proven big-play leader and champion. But that might not be enough in Cleveland, where he’ll also need the powers of Merlin the Magician....

    July 17, 2014

  • Steve Boaz.jpg Breathing Rhythm Studio a center for creativity

    Recording engineer Steve Boaz has brought his musical ambitions to fulfillment in a downtown Norman studio.

    July 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Matt Lauer is so last century

    How about we rename “The Today Show” the “Yesterday Show” since host Matt Lauer asks questions from 1953? Isn’t what Lauer asked GM CEO Mary Barra about whether she’ll do “well” at being simultaneously an executive and a mom about, oh, 30 ...

    July 14, 2014

  • Religion’s role shrinking

    Surveying the response to last month’s Hobby Lobby decision, I was struck by a comment from progressive Massachusetts senator and possible Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren....

    July 12, 2014