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Friday, March 29, 2013
NewsBusters Repeats False Claim About Unsafe Gun Handling
Topic: NewsBusters

Ken Shepherd used a March 25 NewsBusters post to uncritically repeat a claim by the Washington Times' Emily Miller that an actor in a commercial for Mayors Against Illegal Guns "is handling a shotgun in an irresponsible manner, violating three cardinal rules of gun safety." Shepherd added: "It's perfectly legitimate to hire an actor for political campaign ads, but actor or not, is it too much to ask of a gun control group that insists it doesn't have a problem with guns, just guns in the wrong hands, to run an ad that exhibits some rules of common sense gun safety."

But Miller got it wrong, Shepherd's description of her as a "gun aficionada" aside. Miller claimed that the actor "has his finger on the trigger, as if ready to shoot," adding, "To make an ad demonstrating actual gun responsibility, the man would put a straight forefinger above the trigger guard to make sure he doesn't accidentally touch the trigger."

In fact, as Media Matters demonstrates, the actor's trigger finger is well forward of the trigger:

Don't look for a correction from either Miller or Shepherd -- that's not what they do.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:25 AM EDT

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