October 03, 2014
By Robert W. Hunnicutt
Violent rhetoric against the NRA has been all the rage for 50 years, and it's hard to be surprised by any level of venom by this point. But we can still be impressed by the creativity some media types exercise in linking the organization to anything bad.
MSNBC writers Anne Thompson and (I'm not making this up) Krystal Ball have managed to blame NRA for ebola. NRA is, according to the pair, responsible for putting Americans at greater risk because it has objected to Vivek Murthy as a nominee for U.S. Surgeon General, with Sen. Rand Paul putting a hold on his nomination.
The current administration has continued a mantra of "all is well" relative to ebola from the first headlines to the present. We were told there was virtually no chance of it getting here, and if it got here, it would easily be controlled. So if all is well, what does it matter who is surgeon general or if we have one or not?
The notion that the U.S. healthcare system, which employs 14.5 million people and constitutes a sixth of the U.S. economy, is poised for success or failure depending on the fate of one politically appointed bureaucrat, is, of course, laughable. Reassuring press releases can be issued just as effectively from the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta as they can from the Surgeon General's office in Washington.
The fact that administration stooges from the reliable amen corner of MSNBC are dragging the boogeyman of NRA into this conversation tells me that they're getting nervous around D.C. Every day seems to yield a new revelation of ebola cases, ushered right through our borders by the functionaries who are supposed to be protecting us. Limit travel from Guinea or Liberia or Sierra Leone? Can't do it. Nothing to worry about here, folks.
An ebola outbreak of any size whatsoever on U.S. soil would be a massive PR disaster, especially with the midterm elections just a month away. What to do? Drag in that all-purpose whipping boy, the NRA. I don't think we are going to have an ebola outbreak. But if we do, I'll know exactly where to point the trigger finger of blame. And it won't be at the NRA.