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For some odd reason, hypocrisy is an ethical fault that I find particularly interesting, perhaps outrageous. I think that it was my study of the religion in which I'd been indoctrinated that led to a continued interest in the problem as a skeptic.

So it caught my eye when a self-described '2nd amendment enthusiast' went after some celebrities when they lent their support to Mayors Against Illegal Guns' Demand a Plan campaign.

It may not come as such a surprise that the charge of hypocrisy may be somewhat misplaced.

I read about the charge of hypocrisy in the New York Daily News. A gun rights activist, so the story goes, put together a mashup video, showing certain celebrities who had lent their faces and voices to Demand a Plan, and also in movies, wielding guns.

The video, however, doesn’t acknowledge that many of the celebrity films clips were of actors playing police, FBI agents or members of the military. It also identifies the celebrity PSA as “anti-gun,” when the video, and the Mayors Against Illegal Guns campaign, actually calls for tighter gun control, including requiring a background check on every gun sold and a ban on high-capacity magazines.
Never let the truth stop you when trying to reveal some uncomfortable truth...right? I mean, why not be hypocritical about complaining about hypocrisy. No need to worry about the nuances of tighter gun control measures, just wave that broad "anti-gun" brush about. Claim the moral high ground, from a ditch.

Just in case the Daily News was exaggerating about this YouTube poster, I had a look at his profile.

About MASS ONE

I LOVE TO RAP, DRAW LETTERS, I'M A BIG 2ND AMENDMENT ENTHUSIAST, STEELERS FAN, TRUTH SEEKER, AND AN ALLENTOWN OF PITTSBURGH, PA REPRESENTATIVE. I'M FLUENT IN PITTSBURGHESE

Don't yinz blame Pittsburgh or the Steelers. I think they're ok too.

Anyway, if ma5one finds that label inconvenient and changes his profile (which I do not expect), there are also some fascinating videos he posted, like "F*CK ALL ANTI-GUN GUN GRABBING GUN BANNING BRAINWASHED ZOMBIES" or "Banning guns will cause a civil war." (haven't I seen that somewhere else before? how about right here?) or the video in question at the Daily News, "GRAPHIC Demand A Plan - Demand Celebrities Go F*CK Themselves!"

...so I think it's fair to characterize the fellow as a 'gun rights activist.'

Meanwhile...what was that definition again?

Hypocrisy is the state of promoting or administering virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that one does not actually have and is also guilty of violating.[1] Hypocrisy often involves the deception of others and thus can be considered a kind of lie.[1]

Hypocrisy is not simply failing to practice those virtues that one preaches. Samuel Johnson made this point when he wrote about the misuse of the charge of "hypocrisy" in Rambler No. 14:

    Nothing is more unjust, however common, than to charge with hypocrisy him that expresses zeal for those virtues which he neglects to practice; since he may be sincerely convinced of the advantages of conquering his passions, without having yet obtained the victory, as a man may be confident of the advantages of a voyage, or a journey, without having courage or industry to undertake it, and may honestly recommend to others, those attempts which he neglects himself.[2]

Thus, an alcoholic's advocating temperance, for example, would not be considered an act of hypocrisy as long as the alcoholic made no pretense of constant sobriety.

So I wonder, if the charge of hypocrisy is appropriate for an actor who supports gun control and makes money portraying the use of guns. I think there's room for interpretation there; after all, there are those who blame violent movies for encouraging violent behavior.

Which leads me, naturally, to the NRA.

During his December 21 speech at Washington DC's Willard Hotel, NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre sought to refocus the debate on the political response to the shooting away from new regulations on guns. He instead passed blame to what he called "a callous, corrupt and corrupting shadow industry that sells, and sows, violence against its own people," specifically highlighting "the blood-soaked slasher films like 'American Psycho' and 'Natural Born Killers' that are aired like propaganda loops."

Of course, academic research has discredited the notion that violent movies encourage violent behavior. But it nonetheless seems clear that the NRA's aversion to violent films is extremely inconsistent.

Yes, who can forget Wayne LaPierre's bizarre rant, which did everything but blame heavy metal and Dungeons & Dragons (maybe he did, I forget) for gun violence, everything he could think of but the guns themselves. A discredited notion, to be sure, and never mind my personal experience of playing the wrong games, listening to the wrong music, reading the wrong comic books, and apparently watching all the wrong movies and yet somehow I have not gone on a killing spree. Yet.

The thing about hypocrites, though. The deception. Usually it's not so simple as in the case of the YouTube poster. Typically there's some attempt, however lame, to cover it up, to hide the deception. To hide the fact. So it is with the NRA.

The NRA once posted this promotional video on their website and promoted it on their YouTube channel, but it has since been deleted, and thankfully preserved in all its glory by Media Matters. It's about their "Hollywood Guns" exhibit at the NRA National Firearms Museum; according to Media Matters, the exhibit is less than twenty miles away from Wayne LaPierre's bad trip, er, press conference in DC.

In the video, museum senior curator Phil Schreier says, "[W]e encourage you to come by and visit this sequel and come see a true blockbuster here in Fairfax, where all the stars of the silver screen have descended into these galleries and are represented by some of the firearms that we've fallen in love with in our youth and our adulthood, wishing that we too could be like our matinee idols."
Mind you, that's the NRA museum curator connecting the dots between the NRA, firearms manufacturers, and the violent movies they use to sell more guns. This relationship has been studied, apparently. Not by the gov't, I'm sure. Some Republican has no doubt passed a law against that.
Gun expert Tom Diaz has detailed how the NRA and the firearms industry use violent movies to sell more guns, including the role of the "Hollywood Guns" museum exhibit. As he explains, the exhibit is based in the museum's William B. Ruger Gallery, named for the founder of the Sturm, Ruger & Company firearms company. Diaz also points out that Ruger himself blamed violent movies and television for gun violence, not the availability of the firearms themselves.
So it's one thing to blame violent movies for gun violence in order to escape blame oneself. It's a demonstrably false argument, but that's one thing. It is another to go ahead and exploit violent movies yourself as well, to do the very thing you seek to attack others for, to call them a bad thing and then turn a profit on it too. To flat out admit it...
...wishing that we too could be like our matinee idols.
...and then take down the video and try to hide what it is that you've done. That, I think, is a clear case of hypocrisy.

Meanwhile, the word is that mentions of gun control have slipped out of the news cycle, which comes as no surprise to me or anyone else who has taken the time to observe the cycle. Mass shooting, outrage, add time -- equals nothing. It was an inconvenient time, however, politically speaking. I would still like to see something happen during the year. I wouldn't say that I am willing to wait, but more resigned to it, with the knowledge that while we wait, more people will die.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (6+ / 0-)

    There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

    by tytalus on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:09:31 PM PST

  •  Hypocrisy lolz (0+ / 0-)

    Would be a constitutional lawyer usurping the constitution.

    Our Second Amendment is not about hunting, and not about self defense.  These are perks of gun ownership.  The purpose is to ensure THE PEOPLE have the power to overthrow tyranny.  A grown man with a hatchet can walk into an elementary school which is a gun free zone and commit atrocities.  I would wager you could hijack a plane with a boxcutter no?  We should ban those too.

    Loss of life is regrettable but every time some idiot uses a fundamental right to commit a stupid act we should not disenfranchise law abiding citizens of theirs.  If that were the case the Westboro Baptist Church would warrant a ban on free speech.  

    I don't care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my gun and keeps on shooting. Che Guevara

    by Paid Troll on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:35:41 PM PST

    •  Gee... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tytalus, Agathena, Calamity Jean

      God forbid you lose someone you care about to some AR-15 wielding lunatic. That would be, well, merely regrettable, I suppose.

      You think the government is scared of your tyranny-fighting militias?

      They wouldn't even break a sweat.

      Nice username, btw. :)




      Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
      ~ Jerry Garcia

      by DeadHead on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:15:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •   (0+ / 0-)

        Many a Brit broke a sweat, Many American in Vietnam and Afghanistan too.  A citizen and a rifle in his homeland is a formidable warrior.  

        God did forbid Murder.   That being said I also will regret if my loved ones die of cancer, heart disease or motor vehicle accidents.  Yet tobacco, cheeseburgers and cars all vastly more likely than a lunatic and generally voluntary activities are legal.  

        I don't care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my gun and keeps on shooting. Che Guevara

        by Paid Troll on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:33:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sorry... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Calamity Jean

          I've heard all these arguments before. They all fail.




          Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
          ~ Jerry Garcia

          by DeadHead on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:29:05 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have know of arguments that fail as well. (0+ / 0-)

            For instance, when the right-wing pushed to infringe on the 4th amendment with warrantless wiretaps, for percieved security.

            By the same token I reject the notion of limiting the constitutional liberties of innocent Americans in the pursuit of percieved security, with the current push to infringe on the 2nd.

            Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

            by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 07:52:28 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  If you read the diary at some point (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DeadHead, Calamity Jean

      you may realize that the organizations involved are pushing gun control, tighter regulation, not disenfranchisement or banning. The MAIG's campaign will most likely not lead to a civil war of righteous gun owners rising up against tyranny.

      What I find regrettable is this notion that if some sort of suffering and death doesn't happen often enough (by whatever standard that is measured), it's better to ignore it and do nothing. That's the impression I get from your comments.

      There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

      by tytalus on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:11:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Don't expend the energy... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tytalus

        I can see where this one is headed.




        Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
        ~ Jerry Garcia

        by DeadHead on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:30:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  So Libyan rebels (0+ / 0-)

        were endorsed by Obama as patriot freedom lovers....

        What weapons were they using?

        I don't care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my gun and keeps on shooting. Che Guevara

        by Paid Troll on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:33:32 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's relevant (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tytalus

          To this country isn't it?

          Totally similar circumstances.

          Kindergarteners are the price we have to pay for being able to defend ourselves against Big Brother, is that correct?




          Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
          ~ Jerry Garcia

          by DeadHead on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 11:04:54 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The irony being... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Calamity Jean

            that the rebels pleaded for a no-fly zone and got it, because lo and behold their rifle armed warriors needed a bit of a boost. And they got it in the form air support, and of secret arms shipments through Qatar, and Qatar in time was shown to be abusing this to give arms to Islamic militants.

            It's funny how these war history buff types seem not to absorb history's lessons.

            There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

            by tytalus on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 06:44:22 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Speaking of 'history's lessons' (0+ / 0-)

              You may want to check into the political lessons Bill Clinton learned from the AWB of 1994.

              Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

              by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 07:55:37 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  History, sure (0+ / 0-)

                I'll have a look, since gun enthusiasts like to peddle this story but, like you, have a tendency to not back it up.

                So, the assault weapons ban was passed in 1994. From this, I suppose we should conclude that Republican terminators went back in time to begin their 'Republican revolution' with a string of election victories that began in 1993.

                So, we already need to posit time travel in order to preserve your historic lesson. What else do we need?

                The Democratic Party had run the House for all but four of the preceding 62 years. The Republican Party, united behind Newt Gingrich's Contract with America, which promised floor votes on various popular and institutional reforms, was able to capitalize on the perception that the House leadership was corrupt, as well as the dissatisfaction of conservative and many independent voters with President Clinton's actions (including a failed attempt at universal health care and gun control measures).
                Ok, so clearly it was all about the AWB...we have to ignore corruption in Congress and the failed attempt at healthcare legislation.

                And, we also have to assume that an assault weapons ban remains the only legislative proposal, which it's not. In fact, if you were to check the MAIG's list of federal proposals, the AWB is not even there. While a slight majority remains opposed to an assault weapons ban, majority support has arisen for stricter gun control measures.

                You may of course go right on claiming that the AWB alone devastated the Democratic party. You can say it, but so far you haven't shown it.

                There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

                by tytalus on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 08:17:40 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  The I suggest you take it up with Bill Clinton (0+ / 0-)

                  as he cites the AWB for being instrimental in the Republican Revolution & thinks it cost 20 seats out-right in his autobiography, 'My Life'.

                  You should look at the support for gun control during 1994 vs now as well. (Hint: the long term trend is against gun control)

                  Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                  by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 09:37:39 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes, that's why (0+ / 0-)

                    I mentioned in the diary that "Mass shooting, outrage, add time -- equals nothing." I understand that the gun lobby wants to stall until the people forget the latest slaughter, which is already happening.

                    That being said, I can see where you would get a figure of about 20 seats. I also found a pdf of the book to check out, since you want to cite Clinton as an authority.

                    It's interesting that he compared it to the 1946 election, when Truman tried for universal health care, considering Clinton had tried for the same thing, and what happened after 'Obamacare' actually did pass.

                    Ironically, I had hurt the Democrats by both my victories and my defeats. The loss of healthcare and the passage of NAFTA demoralized many of our base voters and depressed our turnout. The victories on the economic plan with its tax increases on high-income Americans, the Brady bill, and the assault weapons ban inflamed the Republican base voters and increased their turnout. The turnout differential alone probably accounted for half of our losses, and contributed to a Republican gain of eleven governorships
                    I wonder why it is that of all these unpopular policies, it's the guns that get fixated upon. After all, 20 seats is not 54. Half the losses is not total devastation. There was actually more than one reason for the 'Republican Revolution,' according to Clinton. But for some odd reason I never hear about that from anyone like yourself.

                    Why haven't healthcare or tax increases been on the RKBA chopping block, if the measure of a policy is in its popularity?

                    After the election I had to face the fact that the law-enforcement groups and other supporters of responsible gun legislation, though they represented the majority of Americans, simply could not protect their friends in Congress from the NRA. The gun lobby outspent, outorganized, outfought, and outdemagogued them.
                    Oh my. Your authority is calling it responsible gun legislation! And he's actually describing how to not get beaten again by the NRA, which is to go after them, and to protect our side from them...something which is happening, now.

                    He goes on to explain that not doing the unpopular things he did "would have left more police officers and children at the mercy of assault weapons." And that they had paid a big price from voters who "would later reap the benefits of their courage in greater prosperity and safer streets."

                    I know he's spinning it, just as I understand the math that 20 does not equal 54, and half does not equal utter devastation. There are lessons to learn, though, like taking the NRA seriously enough to attack it, to damage it, destroy it if possible. Like actually preparing for a fight and protecting politicians who take a hit voting for something important like gun control legislation.

                    Anyway, thanks for inviting me to look into this, since you failed to source anything or say much of consequence. It's been a learning experience! I think we can learn from Clinton's example and do better next time, both with the legislation itself and with the political repercussions. Sorry your message of inevitable despair and hopelessness didn't work out.

                    There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

                    by tytalus on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 11:43:47 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Next time it might be easier if you simply said (0+ / 0-)

                      "It looks like you have a point."

                      You implied I was a liar, I proved Clinton himself agreed that the AWB had massive electorial consequenses.

                      Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                      by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 11:52:41 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  No, sorry (0+ / 0-)

                        what I said is that you didn't show it. And yes, I still think you're exaggerating, and I have shown why I think that. 19 out of 54 (19 is the number in the book) is 35%. There are several reasons for the 1994 rout, and you're still behaving as if there was just one.

                        I make no conclusions on your character. If you don't like how this makes you look, I do believe that's your problem. Again, I'm sorry that the lessons I draw from this history don't fit your 'resistance is futile' message.

                        There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

                        by tytalus on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 12:07:18 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Again, not me, Clinton. (0+ / 0-)

                          And if you accept, as he does, that 19 seats changed as a result of Gun Control alone, and it was a part of the reason for losing 54 other seats (at a time that gun control had far more support), thus creating the Republican Revolution, then you must conclude that Gun Control had massive political consequenses, and can draw the reasonable conclusion that it will again.
                          Thus 'history lesson'.

                          Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                          by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 12:30:34 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  More exaggeration, unsourced claims (0+ / 0-)

                            and now bad math too, well done. 54 was the total loss, sir, it's not 19 + 54; Clinton did not say what you claim he does, and so I do not accept it; and you fail to support your claim about gun control having far more support in 1994.

                            It's no wonder gun enthusiasts overstate the 1994 election, sheesh.

                            There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

                            by tytalus on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 12:52:11 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Uh huh (0+ / 0-)

                            Clinton disagrees with your take.
                            Not that the historically ignorant opinions of 'tytalus' isn't every bit as credible.

                            "Fail to support"
                            I am on a phone and am unable to link. Simply google it, Pew has a long term poll about gun control/2nd amendment support.

                            Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                            by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 01:09:33 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No, sorry (0+ / 0-)

                            I already googled your remarks on Clinton and found them wanting, as anyone can see above. Not going to waste my time again, especially now that you've gone insulting. Have a good day.

                            There is nothing so ridiculous that some philosopher has not said it. -- Cicero

                            by tytalus on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 01:15:00 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Don't worry, I will be glad to prove (0+ / 0-)

                            another fact for you, by linking it when I am at a computer, and thus, make you a little less ignorant on the subject.

                            I will not be able to fix your blatantly unselfaware hypocricy, however.

                            Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                            by FrankRose on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 01:27:30 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  As promised.... (0+ / 0-)

                            Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                            by FrankRose on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 02:11:04 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

    •  A man wielding a hatchet cannot murder 26 people (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DeadHead, tytalus, Calamity Jean

      in 180 seconds.

      Anyone who believes a tyrannical first world government can, in these times, be overthrown by bands of people brandishing firearms is living an anachronistic fantasy.

      Strategic interruption of electronic communications would be enough to neutralize those who believe the 2nd Amendment is a remedy for all things they don't like.

      No gas to fuel your vehicle. No way to get to your cash (unless it's stashed in a mattress).  No use of credit/debit cards. No purchasing of food or more guns or ammunition for the ones you have. No TV or radio news of what's going on beyond your sight.  No cell phones, no land lines.  And these are only a few 21st century realities - from a very long list -  which would make successful 'armed insurrection' impossible.

      This isn't 1776, nor 1863...not even 1941.  And missing from 2nd Amendment discussions by the All Guns All Over for All People crowd is this part of the 2nd Amendment: "a well regulated militia".  

      "Evil is a lack of empathy, a total incapacity to feel with their fellow man." - Capt. Gilbert,Psychiatrist, at the end of Nuremberg trials.

      by 417els on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:16:35 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  180 seconds? (0+ / 0-)

        30:1 student teacher ratio.  Enter classroom. Lock door. Swing hatchet every 6 seconds.  The crazy evil kid attacked elementary school kids.  Had the teacher been allowed to carry..........

        I don't care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my gun and keeps on shooting. Che Guevara

        by Paid Troll on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:31:49 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Each first swing being fatal of course (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          417els, tytalus, Calamity Jean

          And everyone else just sitting around waiting patiently for their turn. Door is able to be locked, and unable to be opened. No one else around to hear any screams. Besides, they'd all be totally quiet while they were waiting for their turn to die.

          Argument FAIL.




          Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
          ~ Jerry Garcia

          by DeadHead on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 11:09:51 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  The purpose is to ensure THE PEOPLE have the power (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tytalus, Calamity Jean
      to overthrow tyranny.
      Riiiight.

      Because that's exactly what the framers meant when they wrote into the 2nd Amendment, "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State..."

      See, that really means that "THE PEOPLE must have the power to overthrow tyranny."

      Or maybe they actually added "JK!" after that "well regulated Militia" clause in double-sekrit invisible ink, that only Paid Troll can see.

      I wonder how many AR-15s I'm going to need to defend against a few Hellfire missiles, or perhaps an M1 Abrams tank?  Better start stocking up....

      •  And they also misread the "free state" part (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tytalus, Calamity Jean, gharlane

        Which is a clear refererence to the new United States, which, BTW, did not have a standing army to protect itself. It was reasoned that, due to public dislike of standing armies (one of the reasons we had the revolution in the first place, to stop Britain from quartering soldiers in private homes), a well-armed public militia would be ready to provide defense until another army (like the Continental Army) could be raised from the states.

        So the whole reason for the "well-regulated militia" was for the "security of a free state", the United States.

        "Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati" - Red Green

        by FlashfyreSP on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 09:04:33 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FlashfyreSP

          I had overlooked that, although I've heard it several times.  You're right.  (I think that "free State" could mean either the US of A or any individual State, or both, but that's a minor point, I think.)

          The Framers' antipathy to standing armies is well known.  As you point out, it was one of the stated reasons for the Revolution (in the Dec of Ind IIRC) -- AND it's also the text of the Third Amendment.  

          And then there's Article I § 8 clause 12: "To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;" -- also making it difficult to maintain a standing army (although we've obviously managed a workaround in the years since, probably to our national detriment).

          So... yeah.  Of course that mattered little (ahem, none) to the denizens of RightWingNuttistan that sit on the SCOTUS.  And it matters nothing to our poor little Paid Troll, either.  Of course, facts never do.

          Cheers :)

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