NBC Sports analyst Bob Costas isn’t shy about his political views in respect to an American’s right to keep and bear arms and other political issues. And in recent years he’s shared those views, most notably offering his thoughts during halftime on Monday Night Football.
While discussing the tragic murder-suicide of former Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, Costas went on a crazy and unexpected gun rant.
Quoting sports writer Jason Whitlock, Costas said “Our current gun culture ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy and that more convenience-store confrontations over loud music coming from a car will leave more teenage boys bloodied and dead. Handguns do not enhance our safety. They exacerbate our flaws, tempt us to escalate arguments, and bait us into embracing confrontation rather than avoiding it.”
The next day Costas tried to clarify his stance on guns saying, “I do not want to see the Second Amendment repealed. … People should be allowed to own guns for their own protection.”
However a few sentences later, Costas went back to railing against responsible gun owners. “I don’t see any reason a citizen should be able to arm himself in some states in ways only police or military should — to have a virtual militia [by] mail order or gun shows. Why do you need a semi-automatic weapon? What possible use is there?” he said.
Many commentators in both sports and politics have criticized Costas’ anti-gun rant as painting all gun owners as negligent, irresponsible, outlaws. And others maintain that Costos should just stick to talking about what he was hired to analyze: sports.
“Our audience wants to watch a football game, and all you really do to fans when they’re watching the game, if you go in that direction, is piss ’em off,” NBC sports announcer Al Michaels said in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter. “They don’t want to be lectured to–period.”
Last week, legendary Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka called the whole Redskins name change controversy “liberal horse-shi*t.”
Today, ESPN sports analyst Kirk Herbstreit called out Bob Costas and other sports announcers who want to use televised sporting events to lecture their audience about politics.
“When I’m calling a game, Herbstreit said, “the way Al Michaels would do and the way I do on Saturday night, I’m going to talk about the game. I’m going to breakdown the game, analyze the game, and the subject matter involving that game and that broadcast.”
Herbstreit went on to say that he doesn’t think a game is “the right platform” to discuss political issues.
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