Over the past two weeks, CNN host Piers Morgan has inserted himself into the Newtown, Conn., tragedy by coming out vociferously against the legality of guns in the United States. Some are even started a petition on the White House website to deport Morgan.
The controversy is nothing new for Morgan. Back in May 2011 on his CNN program, he faced off against Ted Nugent on the issue, who had a some strong words for Morgan and others who want to disarm the public.
“Anybody that wants to disarm me can drop dead,” Nugent said on CNN’s May 18, 2011, “Piers Morgan Tonight.” “Anybody that wants to make me unarmed and helpless, people that want to literally create the proven places where more innocents are killed called gun-free zones, we’re going to beat you. We’re going to vote you out of office or suck on my machine gun.”
Nugent then managed to rebut Morgan point by point on his argument to control firearms in the following exchange:
MORGAN: Much as I’d love to suck on your machine gun, the whole point — the whole point of your defense is that a lot of people do drop dead precisely because you are armed to the teeth. And you’d like everybody else to be.
NUGENT: Not true at all. Not true at all.
MORGAN: Eighty people —
NUGENT: Piers, write this down —
MORGAN: You write this down. Eighty people a day die in America from gunshots.
Nugent explained that where the gun laws were stricter, the crime was higher and asked Morgan why he “resisted” that statistic.
“And 75 of them to 78 of them — statistics by the Uniform Crime Report by the FBI and the U.N. study on violent crime — 78 of those 80 are let out of their cages by corrupt judges and prosecutors who know the recidivism is out of control, know that they’ll commit the crimes again, and they let them walk through plea bargaining, early release and programs,” Nugent said. “Kiss my ass. Where you have the most armed citizens in America, you have the lowest violent crime rate. Where you have the worst gun control, you have the highest crime rate. Piers, choose one. Do you want a lot of crime? We have it — gun-free zones. You want less crime? We have that. More people with concealed weapons permit. Why do you guys resist that statistic?”
That led to another back-and-forth between the two, when Nugent made the point that his aim was to ensure the Constitution’s Second Amendment was upheld:
MORGAN: Well, don’t say you guys.
NUGENT: You guys. Well, unless you’re playing the devil’s advocate.
MORGAN: I can play any advocate I like. It’s my show.
NUGENT: You’re doing a good job. You’re playing the idiot’s advocate here. More guns equals less crime. Period.
MORGAN: Unless I’m wrong — and I don’t want to kiss your ass —
NUGENT: And I’ll be sure to let you know.
MORGAN: — at this point, if you don’t mind. Unless I’m wrong with your argument — well, you’re basically saying that, you know, 90 percent of the gun crime comes from people that —
NUGENT: It’s 96 percent but go ahead.
MORGAN: But they still have to get access to firearms. If you had your way, there would be 10 times as many firearms, right?
NUGENT: Not true at all.
MORGAN: You want everyone in America to own a gun?
NUGENT: Not at all. I’ve never said that. And I got to tell you —
MORGAN: What is your position?
NUGENT: — and I hope you don’t edit this out. Whenever I’ve done interviews with guys that are inclined to be anti-gun, they always go, well, Nugent, you want everyone to have a machine gun. Nugent wants all the deer dead.
MORGAN: What does Nugent want?
NUGENT: Not even close.
MORGAN: What do you want?
NUGENT: What I want is the Second Amendment. We the people, free individuals to have the right to keep and bear arms for self-defense. Find fault with that.