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Bob Costas: I Was Talking About The "Gun Culture," Not Gun Control

BOB COSTAS: It's not about that I'm afraid to go into that zone, but if you're going to you need more time and you to be able to get into some nuance. What I was talking about here, and I'm sorry if that wasn't clear to everybody, was a gun culture. I never mentioned the Second Amendment. I never used the words gun control. People inferred that. Now do I believe we need more comprehensive and more sensible gun control legislation? Yes, I do. That doesn't mean repeal the Second Amendment. That doesn't mean a prohibition on somebody having a gun to protect their home and their family. It means sensible and more comprehensive gun control legislation.

Even if you had that you would still have the problem of what Jason Whitlock wrote about and what I agree with. And that is a gun culture in this country. It demonstrates itself in different ways. It demonstrates itself in the Wild West, Dirty Harry mentality of people who actually believe that if a number of people were armed in the theater in Aurora, they would have been able to take down this nut job in body armor and military style artillery. When in fact almost every policeman in the country would tell that you that would have only increased the tragedy and added to the carnage.

It also plays itself out, and Jason Whitlock had some insight into this. It plays itself out in the inner cities where teenage kids are somehow armed to the hilt. And it plays itself out, and this I know the whys and wherefores of, in the sports world, where young athletes are disproportionately armed.

Tony Dungy, one of the most respected in all of sports, on our program on Sunday night said that one year when he coached the Colts, he had 80 players before they cut the roster down. 80 players in training camp. He said, 'How many of you guys own a gun?' And roughly 65 hands went up. Even if all those guns were obtained legally, you can't have 65 guys in their 20s and 30s, aggressive young men, subject to impulses without something bad happening. And I posed this question. I didn't have time to pose it Sunday night but I'll pose it here. Give me one example of an athlete. I know it has happened in society. But give me one example of a professional athlete who by virtue of his having a gun took a dangerous situation and turned it around for the better. I can't think of a single one. But sadly, I can think of dozens whereby virtue of having a gun, a professional athlete wound up in a tragic situation.

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