A recent radio ad from Milwaukee Counties Sheriff David Clarke suggests people should not depend on law enforcement to be there right when you might need them. The NBC Today show freaked out a bit concerning the suggestion to arm yourself. The radio ad’s transcript reads as follows.
I’m Sheriff David Clarke, and I want to talk to you about something personal…your safety. It’s no longer a spectator sport; I need you in the game, but are you ready? With officers laid-off and furloughed, simply calling 9-1-1 and waiting is no longer your best option. You can beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back; but are you prepared? Consider taking a certified safety course in handling a firearm so you can defend yourself until we get there. You have a duty to protect yourself and your family. We’re partners now. Can I count on you?
The problem I have with Clarke’s statement is that a firearm should never be the only part of your defense plan. Clarke did not mention exterior motion lights, locking doors and windows, an alarm system or a dog that barks as the four most important things you can do to protect your home and family. A firearm can certainly be part of that plan because locked doors don’t stop people, alarms can be ignored and some people are not able to have a dog. Clarke probably had a 15 second spot that could only provide so much information. Still, the NBC crowd thought the ad was irresponsible, dangerous and they even used the term vigilantism!
Their opinion is totally off the wall. They really think it’s illegal for him to let people know law enforcement numbers are being diminished and it will therefore take them much longer to get to you and provide help? These NBC fools must also think it’s irresponsible for the sheriff to let people know response times are getting slower?
NANCY SNYDERMAN: This is so irresponsible it’s dangerous.
STAR JONES: I think it’s so irresponsible.
LAUER: …is it bad advice? JONES: It’s irresponsible.
SNYDERMAN: It’s irresponsible and dangerous.
JONES: One hundred percent.
SNYDERMAN: He’s basically, you know, vigilantism, I don’t hear anything in there about safety. It’s, “Arm yourself, the cops won’t be there.” Terrible.
LAUER: He’s saying take a course and learn how to use a firearm.
Oh Matt, don’t bother telling Snyderman what she heard. She has an agenda to stick to.
DONNY DEUTSCH: I actually, I think politically I’m surprised legally they were able to run that ad.
JONES: I’m absolutely surprised that’s legal for him to even say. And it’s irresponsible for him to suggest to put more guns on the streets and to frighten people into thinking…
Yeah, that pesky 1st Amendment must be looked at again.
SNYDERMAN: Especially when there are buy-back programs everywhere.
JONES: …that that’s the only way for them to protect themselves.
I agree Star, and I’m willing to bet the sheriff does not believe a firearm is the only way to protect yourself. He had a 15 second ad to get the message out.
DEUTSCH: It’s one of the scariest things I’ve ever seen.
SNYDERMAN: Yeah, and that’s not…
JONES: It really is irresponsible.
SNYDERMAN: …that’s not a role of leadership.