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Tuesday, October 9, 2007
WND Repeats Misleading Gun-Law Poster Boy Anecdote
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An Oct. 6 WorldNetDaily article repeats a misleading anecdote about a man who's being held up by a right-wing gun-rights group as an argument against more restrictive gun laws -- right down to getting the man's name wrong.

As it did in an a Sept. 27 article by Bob Unruh, WND -- in parroting Gun Owners of America's opposition to a law that would create and enforce a mechanism to deny guns for mental health reasons -- once again told the case of "Horatio Miller," who made an "offhanded, tongue-in-cheek remark" that it could be "worse than Virginia Tech" if someone broke into his car because of the guns there, adding: "Miller, with no criminal record and the holder of a concealed carry permit who had passed rigorous background checks, was ordered never to own or possess a gun again."

But as we documented, there's a lot more to this case that WND's not telling. Horasio Miller -- his actual name -- was reported by police to have pointed a gun at a neighbor, was caught inside a college buiding with a 9mm pistol, and discovered to have been tapping phone lines for free service and listening in on phone conversations of other tenants in the building. When authorities investigated Miller's apartment, they found it so dirty that it was deemed unfit for human habitation.

The article also repeats the GOA's objection to the proposed law's prohibition on gun ownership by "any veterans diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder" without explaining why it's a good thing for veterans with PTSD to have access to weapons.

Copying-and-pasting is not exactly stellar journalism. Copying-and-pasting things proven to be distorted and misleading looks especially stupid.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:48 AM EDT

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