You probably are wondering who this could be. A sports figure? A media figure? Well yes he is in the media and probably one of the most skilled and knowledgeable journalists of our time. Richard Engel is NBCs Chief Foreign Correspondent and he has diligently and quietly been reporting on our engagements in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria for the duration of these unfortunate conflicts. Apparently fearless, this unarmed slight figure of a man stares down the unknown on a daily basis in places that have claimed the lives of scores of foreign journalists. There is in my opinion no greater authority on the Middle East than this man, particularly the Middle East street which he patrols with the skill of a soldier but only armed with the tools of his media trade and hopefully the advices of a loyal local “fixer” and security. Im no political authority but wouldn’t it be prudent for the White House to summon this man on occasion, even if in the name of national security, to provide briefings on what is really happening? The skill of the CIA analyst notwithstanding, it would seem that he is our man on the street and his knowledge should not be reserved simply for the evening news sound bite. I feel that if people like Richard Engel and Sebastian Junger ( another war correspondent whose “War” captures the American soldier in Afghanistan like no other work) were consulted as a matter of political protocol we would be in a better place and make far more informed decisions about our policy in areas of the world where there is a galaxy of difference between us culturally. Be safe Mr Engel I consider you a national treasure, journalist or not.
Backpedaling from his ill advised remarks regarding the relationship between gun ownership and the senseless killings by the Kansas City player, Bob Costas attempted to put his comments in perspective on the Dan Patrick Show. His ramblings about not wanting the Second Amendment repealed but” people should not arm themselves like the military or police would” provide further evidence that he should stick to sports. The famous “why would anyone need a semiautomatic weapon” blather actually flowed from his mouth. I can assure you that this troubled football player would have had the ability to kill the mother of his child and himself in myriad ways including the use of a revolver. There are plenty of reasons to own a semi-automatic weapon and someone should tell Mr Costas who is obviously very late to this party that that argument was torn apart a long time ago.
Bob Costas echoed the writings of a colleague which posited that without guns the horrible murder/suicide in Kansas City would not have occurred. Our rights to own firearms only subject to reasonable restrictions has been ruled upon by the U.S. Supreme Court. The right to keep and bear arms is a fundamental right. This human tragedy should do nothing to diminish this right any more than what happened to Congressman Giffords or to those poor souls in Aurora Colo. In a free society such events will occur and we must do all we can to interdict, identify and help those who we see are suffering from mental disease. Anything else would be unacceptable and an affront to protected rights. Mr Costas is a skilled and respected journalist but he should exit this debate and get on with the business of broadcasting. He doesn’t understand the Constitution or the implications of the statements he makes.
This was not news to me. I am immersed in both the biker and law enforcement communities and I am keenly aware of the serious charitable initiatives these folks are capable of. The NYPD has much to be proud of when one of its own comes to the aid of a homeless soul. There are far too many out there who will die on the streets and I am troubled by our quick reaction to judge those less fortunate than us. Life strikes hard to some and it is up to us as humans to do what we can. Officer DiPrimos 75$ outlay for warm shoes and socks transcended politics and philosophy. It was just one human looking to lessen anothers suffering. Bravissimo paesano!!!!!!!