David Gregory and Mens Rea

In this piece at NRO Mark Steyn quotes NYU professor Jay Rosen as saying that l’affaire Gregory is “the dumbest media story of 2012.” Why? Because, as CNN’s Howard Kurtz breezily put it, everybody knows David Gregory wasn’t “planning to commit any crimes.”

He wasn’t?

I was under the impression that he knew in advance that possession of the magazine was illegal and that he planned to possess it any way. That sounds like planning to commit a crime to me.

What Messrs. Rosen and Kurtz mean to say is that David Gregory is one of us, and we know that he wasn’t going to do anything to damage our calm, so it would be unjust to hold him to the standards that we want to impose on them.

Gentle Reader, their them is our us.

Keeping Up the Skeer

DaTechGuy suggests that l’affaire Gregory isn’t about gun control as much as it is about caste. Mr. Gregory is one of the DC courtiers and, as such, believes that he should not be troubled by the laws or moral standards enacted to keep the plebeians in line.

We’ve seen this before.

We’ve also seen that when enough stink is raised, the offending patrician will be thrown overboard by his peers to quiet the rage of the unwashed. Remember Anthony Weiner?

Perhaps, if we keep up the skeer, Mr. Gregory will get what should be coming to him.

David Gregory’s Magazine

Of course, they can’t just come out and say it, but one of the reasons why the main stream media is pooh-pooh-ing l’affaire Gregory is that the idea that simple possession of an unloaded magazine being a crime is so mind-bogglingly stupid on its face that they understand the unfairness of it all at a gut level. Why should merely holding a metal box with a spring in it be punishable by a $1,000 fine and a year in jail?

Well, our betters passed that law, and now one of them has broken it.

And now we will see whether DC is a city ruled by laws or by men above the laws.

UPDATE–Instalanche! Thanks, Prof. Reynolds, and welcome, Instapundit readers!

UPDATE 2–Ann Althouse explains the legal and moral aspects of the situation to Howard Kurtz.

UPDATE 3—Why, yes, I do use 30-round magazines with my M1 Carbine.

David Gregory v. The Rules

When David Gregory waved that STANAG magazine for an M16/M4/AR15 around on Meet the Press, he probably had no idea that he was violating DC law by merely possessing it. He was also violating Rule 2 of Alinsky’s Rules:

Never go outside the expertise of your people.

Any right-wing gun nut in and around DC knows about the District’s absurd magazine restrictions. Apparently, none of Mr. Gregory’s people on the Meet the Press crew are gun nuts. That error has enabled the pro-civil-rights side of the debate to use Rule 4 against Mr. Gregory.

Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.

Of course, laws such as the DC magazine ban were never intended to be used against people like David Gregory. Those folks are special. They send their kids to private schools with good security while ridiculing the thought of providing protection to children in the public schools. And their hypocrisy is noted. Rule 5:

Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.

Meanwhile, it looks as if Wayne LaPierre and the NRA have been studying the Rules. They stepped forward with a proposal to use their law enforcement training expertise to assist in training security personnel for schools. Rule 11:

The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.

The Left hasn’t come up with any kind of rational alternative other than prohibiting possession of certain kinds of firearms. Prohibition? Do they remember how well it worked for booze? Can they see how well it works for drugs? In pushing a previously tried, failed “solution,” the Left allows the pro-civil-rights side to employ Rule 10 against them.

If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.

Stupidly oppressive tactics by the one side will often drive public opinion to support the other.

George Patton read Erwin Rommel’s book on tank warfare and used what he learned against the Field Marshall. More and more people on the Right are reading Alinsky …



UPDATE 2–Apparently, someone at NBC checked with the DC Metro Police about using the magazine, and they were warned not to use it. Legal Insurrection reports that

the fact that NBC News was warned by the D.C. Police not to use the magazine puts a whole new light on the incident, turning it into an intentional violation of the law. While the law does not require intent, the existence of intent could influence a decision whether or not to prosecute.

UPDATE 3–Mr. Gregory’s journalistic irresponsibility is one of the reasons why I’m pushing for a high-capacity magazine ban. No one has any legitimate reason to need a copy of Mother Jones, The New Republic, or Time with more than 10 pages.