Recently, tragedy struck the Dallas Cowboys as a promising linebacker on their practice squad was killed in a drunk driving accident Saturday. Of course, the sports world solemnly offered their prayers and sympathies to the family of Jerry Brown, the young man killed when his teammate, Josh Brent crashed the car. Certainly, this is a tragedy that is frustrating not only because it could have been avoided, but because it put a stop to a life and career that was only getting started.
That being said, however, I should note that this is not the only recent tragedy in the NFL. On December 1st, Jovan Belcher killed himself after killing his girlfriend. And while that, too, was tragic, sports commentator Bob Costas had no problem interjecting his liberal talking points into a football game to question the “gun culture” and rant against guns as an agent of destruction for young promise in life.
So, I suppose my question is: Where’s Costas’ corresponding, absurd rant against the dangers of automobiles?
As many already know, in the wake of Belcher’s murder-suicide, Costas hijacked a halftime report to vent his disdain of firearms. He stated,
“Please, those who need tragedies to continually recalibrate their sense of proportion about sports would seem to have little hope of ever truly achieving perspective. You want some actual perspective on this? Well, a bit of it comes from the Kansas City-based writer Jason Whitlock with whom I do not always agree, but who today said it so well that we may as well just quote or paraphrase from the end of his article.
‘Our current gun culture,’ Whitlock wrote, ‘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. In the coming days, Jovan Belcher’s actions, and their possible connection to football will be analyzed. Who knows?’
‘”But here,’ wrote Jason Whitlock, ‘is what I believe. If Jovan Belcher didn’t possess a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.’”
Now, bear in mind that Costas sided on the issue of gun culture with a man who likened the NRA to the KKK. Jason Whitlock said,
“I believe the NRA is the new KKK. And that the arming of so many black youths, uh, and loading up our community with drugs, and then just having an open shooting gallery, is the work of people who obviously don’t have our best interests [at heart].”
The problem here is not that Costas has an opinion. The problem with his rant is that A) it was the wrong time and place. And B) rather than blame the illegal action by Belcher, he and Jason Whitlock promoted the flawed logic of “more guns equal more violence.”
So, if Costas is willing to blame the firearm, the instrument used to cause death, should he not equally condemn vehicles? In his diatribe, he noted that our culture’s tolerance of firearms leads to unnecessary escalation of domestic abuse situations. If gun culture exacerbates these volatile situations, shouldn’t Costas similarly claim that with less societal tolerance for vehicles on the road, drunk driving accidents are less likely to claim lives?
Of course, we will not stop driving cars. You know why? Because it’s asinine to blame the tool used to commit illegal or immoral acts.
The gauntlet has been thrown down. Mr. Costas must either admit that his logic is flawed or he must double-down and call into question why we must have vehicles so readily accessible.