Costas' Gun Control Call Stirs Hornet Nest

Halftime speech draws fierce criticism

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 3, 2012 11:58 AM CST

(Newser) – Bob Costas' response to Jovan Belcher's murder-suicide ruffled a lot of feathers yesterday. Costas used his commentary segment during halftime of yesterday's Cowboys-Eagles game to call for increased gun control, quoting extensively from a column from Kansas City native and Fox Sports columnist Jason Whitlock. "Our current gun culture simply ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy," Whitlock wrote, speculating that if Belcher didn't own a gun "he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today."

  • The backlash on Twitter was immediate and harsh. "You tune in for a football game and end up listening to Bob Costas spewing sanctimonious dreck," complained Herman Cain. "Nicole Brown Simpson would be alive today if OJ hadn't shot her with that knife," quipped another conservative. (You can see more responses at Politico and The Week)
  • Even if Costas and Whitlock have a point, Matt Yoder at Awful Announcing argues that the incident illustrates that Costas' halftime editorials "have been out of place on Sunday Night Football since their inception," and that the sermon should have been "saved for a more fitting platform like Costas Tonight."
  • Of course gun control is hardly the only issue Belcher's death raises. ESPN points out some others, like the need for mental counseling, and the possibility of installing security to protect from internal, not external threats.
  • And over at CNN, Kevin Powell laments the environment Belcher grew out of. "Belcher was a man living in the supersized macho world of football," he writes. "Too many of us have been taught manhood in a way that is not healthy." Over and over we've seen men kill their partners "as if they had no other vocabulary or emotion to deal with the disagreement."

Bob Costas is seen in this screenshot.
Bob Costas is seen in this screenshot.   (YouTube)
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Bob Costas sounds off at halftime.   (YouTube)

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