In what must be the hottest take of the week, author Kurt Andersen claimed on CNN that the GOP’s refusal to go along with anti-gun legislation amounts to “mass human sacrifice.”
“Perhaps, this revival of mass human sacrifice in the United States is just a passing thing that will go away but… on the other hand, the Republicans have, for years now, been doing a different kind of what is effectively mass human sacrifice in terms of gun deaths and eliminating all gun regulation,” Andersen said as host Jim Acosta nodded along.
“A maximalist view of freedom over lives,” Acosta added.
Acosta was interviewing Andersen about his new book and Atlantic article that likens conservatives who speak out against COVID vaccines to ancient people groups who promoted human sacrifice.
“But now, in the last year, and just starting as soon as there were vaccines available, there were. And really, it strikes me that this is like, so much like the mass human sacrifices in societies in the past which took place in large complex empires not unlike ours,” Andersen claimed.
Andersen is no stranger to anti-gun rhetoric. In 2018, Anderson published a “Big Think” video purporting to explain to viewers “how the gun control debate went crazy.”
In the segment, Andersen repeats the same tired anti-gun talking points about the Second Amendment: that gun rights were reserved for militia members, that guns in the 17th century were much less scary, and that a full-throated defense of gun rights is a recent phenomenon.
“[In the 1970s], the National Rifle Association and the gun lobby more generally went out of its mind, to be blunt, and decided to be absolutists, that there would be no regulation of guns,” Andersen claims.
“I think, really meaningful regulation of the ownership of guns at this point is a political fantasy as a result, ironically, of the Second Amendment absolutists and re-interpreters and revisionists and fantasists having imposed their interpretation of the Second Amendment on all of us,” he concludes.
In 2012, Andersen posted on Facebook that he visited a range in New York city to “fire a semiautomatic .22.”
“Turned out, somewhat shockingly, that I’m a good shot,” he said.
Neither Andersen nor Acosta has made a statement clarifying their comparison of Republicans to murderous ancient peoples.