MRC’s Houck Slams the Liberal Media’s ‘Misinformation’ Campaign on Guns

News & Politics

Appearing on the early Saturday/late Friday edition of the Fox News Channel’s Fox News @ Night, NewsBusters managing editor Curtis Houck took on the best and worst in the liberal media, slamming the liberal media for their “misinformation” campaign on guns with hyperbolic rhetoric that “doesn’t accomplish anything.”

Houck spoke to host Shannon Bream alongside Babylon Bee managing editor Joel Berry, who led off by highlighting MSNBC host Joy Reid’s venomous Thursday night screed that insisted Republicans don’t care about the lives of dead children (like in Uvalde, Texas) and that there’s “no mental health issue” regarding mass shooters.

Berry said he’s become accustomed to “really awful rhetoric coming from the pundit class” with Reid’s bit having “[taken] my breath away a little bit, you know, and I could respond by…making fun of Joy Reid…[b]ut I think the more appropriate response…is one of sadness” for what’s happened to “our culture” shirking responsibility from its brokenness.

For his lowlight, Houck picked a fact-free meltdown from ABC’s The View on Wednesday that included co-host Whoopi Goldberg warning Americans to prepare for the government to come and seize their guns.

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Houck noted that both The View and Joy Reid can stand in for really any of these news outlets or a comedy shows or pundit you know, cases of punditry on the left” over the past week, which served as a reminder that “there are a few issues in our body politic where there’s more misinformation out there…than on guns.”

For his highlight, Berry selected a picture of a Border Patrol officer who took down the Uvalde school shooter, but was injured when a bullet grazed his skull, though it only required stitches.

“It seems that a small handful of off-duty Border Patrol agents…disobeyed a stand down order and rushed in to — to save these kids. I can’t think of anything more American,” Berry said.

Going finally to Houck, he selected as his highlight a segment from CNN’s The Lead on Thursday that more CNN shows should emulate as host Jake Tapper brought on The Reload founder and MRC Bulldog Award winner Stephen Gutowski for a sober, fact-based segment on guns.

Houck praised Gutowski as a former colleague who’s “dedicated…to sober, serious firearm safety and reporting” at a time when “this…issue…requires facts in very specific concise arguments to break through the noise and the emotion that…frequently overwhelm[s] us.”

“I hope more of that continues. More news outlets should be looking at people like Stephen, who are going to be yelling and screaming to draw outrage and applause and instead allow people to take a breath,” he added.

To see the transcript of the segment from FNC’s Fox News @ Night With Shannon Bream on May 28, click “expand.”

FNC’s Fox News @ Night With Shannon Bream
May 28, 2022
12:25 a.m. Eastern

JIMMY KIMMEL [on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!, 05/25/22]: Because here we are again on another day of mourning in this country. Once again, we grieve for the little boys and girls whose lives have been ended and whose families have been destroyed.

JASON WHITLOCK [on FNC’s Jesse Watters Primetime, 05/26/22]: Our culture is controlled by fear and cowardice. Masculinity, traditional male values are under attack. There’s — it’s not any mystery why young boys are confused, angry. Mental illness is running rampant in America.

SHANNON BREAM: This week has required us to cover one of the most difficult tragic stories in recent memory. So, how did the media handle the sometimes rapidly evolving details coming out of Uvalde this week? Let’s talk about that side of the story with Babylon Bee Managing Editor Joel Berry; and NewsBusters Managing Editor, Curtis Houck. Great to have you with us gentlemen.

JOEL BERRY: Thanks for having us.

CURTIS HOUCK: Good evening, Shannon.

BREAM: Okay, so you guys have got some highlights and lowlights in the media this week. Joel, I’m going to start with your low light. We’ll play this from MSNBC’s Joy Reid.

JOE REID [on MSNBC’s The ReidOut, 05/26/22]: Republicans just tying themselves into pretzels to point the finger in every single thing, but the problem — the gun. As far as we know, there was no mental health issue with the individual who stole the futures of 19 children in Uvalde, Texas.

BREAM: All right, Joel, tell us about your pick.

BERRY: Yes, you know, anytime a tragedy like this occurs, I always prepare myself to hear some really awful rhetoric coming from the pundit class. This one still took my breath away a little bit, you know, and I could respond by, by like making fun of Joy Reid, remarking that I’m, I’m amazed that she has a TV show where people pay her money to share these sorts of thoughts with the, I’m assuming dozens of viewers that tune in every week. But I think the more appropriate response, I suppose, is one of sadness. I think, you know, our, our culture, a lot of our culture is so desperate — 

BREAM: Mmhmm.

BERRY: — to avoid a lot of the real issues that are plaguing our culture right now. Everywhere I look, I see the brokenness of our institutions — 

BREAM: Mmhmm.

BERRY: — our leadership, our politicians, and our families, you know, the way we’re failing, we’re failing our young men and in our desperation to avoid a lot of these really difficult and complex issues, we kind of pour all our energy and our focus into this inanimate object, this gun, the scapegoat, that — that seems like such a simple and easy solution to us. And it’s just a tragedy. I think we need to, we need to start having a lot of these — these difficult conversations.

BREAM: And they will take time and they are — and by the way, folks, there are going to be some highlights here. So, stick around for those. We’ve got some good news. Curtis, I want to play your light, low light. This is Whoopi Goldberg.

WHOOPI GOLDBERG [on ABC’s The View, 05/25/22]: So, you sold an AR-15 at the gun show? See you in court. Does your neighbor have too big an arsenal? Call the cops? If you’re going to get all in my business and tell me what my family can and cannot do? Neither can you. They’re going to come for those AR-15, and you better get ready to give them up.

BREAM: All right, Curtis, your low light pick.

HOUCK: Yes. I’m really just going to echo what Joel has to say. I mean, really, The View and Joy Reid can stand in for really any of these news outlets or a comedy shows or pundit you know, cases of punditry on the left. You know, there are a few issues in our body politic where there’s more misinformation out there and misinformed people than on guns. And, you know, it requires a lot of sobrieties on the part of not just journalists, but on the American public as well. And you’re not seeing that, obviously, with the — people like The View and Whoopi Goldberg, specifically. You know, she’s just off of claiming that she knows better than the Catholic Church regarding Speaker Pelosi. So, now, she’s moving on to this. I guess she’s taking a page out of Beto O’Rourke from his presidential campaign when he said that we’re, we are going to take your AR-15 and it doesn’t accomplish anything.

BREAM: Yes. And apparently, he’s changed that now that he’s running for statewide office in Texas. But okay, let’s quickly get to your highlights because we need some good news. Joel, I’m going to put up the picture here and let you explain this is a cap that was involved in somebody who decided to breach those doors and go in and get this shooter.

BERRY: Yes, well, obviously that you know that a lot of the details are still coming out. As far as I know the name of this man who was wearing this cap hasn’t been released, but as far as we know, it seems that a small handful of off-duty Border Patrol agents, disobeyed orders, disobeyed a stand down order and rushed in to — to save these kids. I can’t think of anything more American than disobeying orders to do the right thing? 

BREAM: Mmhmm.

BERRY: I think it’s awesome. You know, there’s some other pictures of this guy coming out. 

BREAM: Mmhmm.

BERRY: He was obviously off duty wearing dad jeans and a plaid shirt and this trucker cap, you know. And it’s encouraging to see, in the midst of this brokenness and corruption, we see the core of America is still there — 

BREAM: Mmhmm.

BRERY: — you know, the good people — 

BREAM: Yeah.

BERRY: — that are willing to put their lives on the line to do the right thing. 

BREAM: Yeah.

BERRY: It’s still there. It’s still alive. And that gives me hope.

BREAM: Yes. And another picture I know shows him with the — actually, the stitches on his scalp. I mean, he was so close to that boy doing a lot more damage, but he was willing to run in there. Okay, this is your highlight, Curtis over on CNN.

STEPHEN GUTOWSKI [on CNN’s The Lead, 05/26/22]: You could imagine that hardening schools, as some Republicans have suggested, could have helped in this situation, given what we’re now learning about what actually occurred.

BREAM: All right, give us a quick explanation on that.

HOUCK: Yes. Stephen Gutowski, a former colleague of mine, he ventured out to start the reload, which is dedicated you know, to sober, serious firearm safety and reporting about guns. As I was saying in my previous answer, this is an issue that requires facts in very specific concise arguments to break through the noise and the emotion that can sometimes overwhelm — and frequently overwhelm us. And for CNN to put Stephen on the air was a really smart move. And I hope more of that continues. More news outlets should be looking at people like Stephen, who are going to be yelling and screaming to draw outrage and applause and instead allow people to take a breath.

BREAM: Yes. And we need factual information, whether it’s regard to the law enforcement response or potential legislative measures, we need to have those conversations because we’re all emotionally drained this week and just heartbroken for these folks in Texas. So I agree with you. We want to have a spirited debate, but one that is respectful. It’s what we try to do here on Fox News @ Night. Joel and Curtis, thank you both for being with us.

BERRY: Thank you.

HOUCK: Thanks, Shannon.

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