Pat McNamara found himself in hot water last week for an interview that aired on Comedy Central in which the popular firearms trainer ostensibly voiced support for universal background checks and waiting periods for firearms purchases.
I say “ostensibly” because apparently there was some chicanery going on in the editing room. Much in the same way that Katie Couric manipulated a scene in her documentary, “Under the Gun,” to make members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League look like slack-jawed rubes, it appears the editors at Comedy Central misrepresented the opinions of Mr. McNamara in this teaser interview (see below), promoting the special “Jordan Klepper Solves Guns,” to make it seem that he has no qualms with either measure.
Basically, the editors removed all of the nuance from the discussion to push the false agenda that Hey, everyone — even Firearms Trainer Pat McNamara — supports ‘common sense’ gun legislation.
I reached out to McNamara to see if he wanted to clarify his position. Below is our brief exchange:
S.H. Blannelberry: Where do you stand on universal background checks?
Pat McNamara: I do not support them. I also explained to Jordan Klepper that UBCs are like liberal code for registering your guns. This was toxic to him.
S.H. Blannelberry: Where do you stand on waiting periods?
Pat McNamara: I do not care about waiting periods. The thing is though, and I explained this on the show, that good citizens shouldn’t be punished for ‘Not’ being prepared, before a crisis happens. It’s stupidity and people shouldn’t be punished for being stupid.
S.H. Blannelberry: How was the exchange creatively edited, i.e. what key parts were omitted?
Pat McNamara: When asked (the part that may or may not air) “What about people who think it’s a good idea to have universal background checks?” my response was, “ I don’t have an issue with that.” Because I do not. I do not care what others think or what their opinions are.
S.H. Blannelberry: Are you consider legal action against Comedy Central for misrepresenting your position?
Pat McNamara: Got to see how it airs.
Whether McNamara will have a leg to stand on in terms of legal action against Comedy Central ultimately depends on what the raw footage looks like versus what actually aired in the special. On this front, we’ll have to wait and see what happens.
As it relates to the Couric saga, VCDL sued the former new anchor and her producers for defamation to the tune of $12 million.
That case was recently thrown out by a federal judge who argued that the 8-second pause added to the scene in which the group was discussing background checks for convicted felons and those on terrorist watchlists did not rise to level of defamation.
“The plaintiffs’ defamation claims fail because the interview scene is not false,” wrote U.S. District Court Judge John Gibney, Jr. “’Under the Gun’ portrays members of the VCDL not answering the question posed by Couric.
“In reality, members of the VCDL did not answer the question posed by Couric,” he continued. “They talked about background checks and gun laws generally, but did not answer the question of how to prevent felons or terrorists from purchasing guns without background checks. The editing simply dramatizes the sophistry of the VCDL members.”
It’s worth noting that Judge Gibney was an Obama appointee.