Jim Sleeper and Daniel J.H. Greenwood: To Stop Gun Violence, We Need to Remember We Can Regulate Corporate Speech and AdvertisingRoundup: Historians' Take
tags: guns, gun control, The Atlantic, Jim Sleeper, Daniel J.H. Greenwood, Citizens United, corporate speech
The Obama Administration's gun-control agenda is unlikely to prevail unless it's accompanied by a wrenching national struggle on two fronts: re-thinking the "well regulated" part of the Second Amendment, and curbing paid corporate gun glorification that undermines "free" speech under the First Amendment. As the president said in his inaugural address, we must re-impose rules of fair play on markets.
National Rifle Association vice-president Wayne LaPierre was right to charge that violent video-games such as Doom and Call of Duty seed social storms of fear and mistrust with gladiatorial spectacles that have been virtual instruction manuals for mass shooters in Colorado, Connecticut and Norway, who were inveterate players of those games.
But LaPierre didn't note that game producers had "a mutually beneficial marketing relationship" with the very gun manufacturers that support his own NRA. As the New York Times reported, the games' pictures of real guns come with embedded links to sales sites. Commercial speech like that can be regulated without violating the First Amendment.
Most of these games' content isn't free "speech" at all. Only the Supreme Court's confusion of free speech with anything that profit-driven corporations pay anyone to say or depict makes it seem otherwise. Regulating some games' marketing -- or even content -- would not suppress speech that a republic should protect....
comments powered by Disqus
- Few in St. Louis Knew Confederate Memorial Existed. Now, Many Want It Gone.
- This is why presidents want backchannels and how it can go wrong
- Trump Angled for Soviet Posting In the 1980s
- Places That Are Actually Worth Visiting
- JFK’s last birthday: Gifts, champagne and wandering hands on the presidential yacht
- General McMaster, Step Down—and Let Trump Be Trump
- Historian David Kaiser says the most exciting day of his life was JFK’s election
- Michael Bliss, Historian Who Dispelled Myths of Insulin’s Discovery, Dies at 76
- Jill Lepore: Americans Aren't Just Divided Politically, They're Divided Over History Too
- AHA joins protest of Trump’s plan for drastic cuts to the NEH