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August 12, 2013

Gun Control Strategists' Battle Plan Explicitly Includes Pushing Emotionalism and Suppressing Facts

If you missed the Washington Examiner's amazing exposé, and then Taranto's column, and then you missed Andy writing about it yesterday, here's your chance to finally make amends.

Newly uncovered Democratic anti-NRA talking points urge anti-gun advocates and politicians to hype high-profile gun incidents like the Florida slaying of Trayvon Martin to win support for new gun control laws.

In talking points likely followed by top Democratic leaders including President Obama after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in December, the anti-gun "guide" urged gun foes to speak out when a shooting "creates a unique climate" to shout down the National Rifle Association.

"The most powerful time to communicate is when concern and emotions are running at their peak," said the 80-page document titled "Preventing Gun Violence Through Effective Messaging," and produced by three Democratic firms led by the polling and research outfit Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research.

The guide was produced in 2012, before the Sandy Hook shootings. According to a report posted on NRA News from Examiner.com, not connected to the Washington Examiner, it was developed to help anti-gun advocates in Washington State's effort to control gun purchases, though it clearly has national overtones and uses, especially as groups like Mayors Against Illegal Guns -- a Greenberg Quinlan Rosner client -- expand their fight for gun control.

The guide spells out how to talk about gun control and when to press the issue, the best time being in the wake of a publicized shooting. For example, it calls on gun control advocates to speak out, "don't wait" for the facts, after a shooting like Martin's heightens awareness of the issue.

"The debate over gun violence in America is periodically punctuated by high-profile gun violence incidents including Columbine, Virginia Tech, Tucson, the Trayvon Martin killing, Aurora, and Oak Creek. When an incident such as these attracts sustained media attention, it creates a unique climate for our communications efforts," said the guide.

"A high-profile gun violence incident temporarily draws more people into the conversation about gun violence," added the talking points. "We should rely on emotionally powerful language, feelings and images to bring home the terrible impact of gun violence," said the guide, which also urged advocates use images of scary looking guns and shooting scenes to make their point.

This is an accidental disclosure of the truth every bit as arresting and important as Mitt Romney's "47%" remark (which itself was actually off-the-cuff, and not a thought-out, written strategy guide).

So why isn't the media talking about it?

For an obvious reason: They follow the guide themselves. How can they publicize a story that explains the manner in which they permit themselves to be used by gun-control advocates?

Indeed, by employing most of these tactics themselves first, they practically wrote the guide. The authors of the guide are really just collators of the fine work the media has already done.

By the way, be careful of this blog-- it's a Tactical Blog. Some of the posts are even Semi-Automatic.

Actually most of them are but, hey, so are David Brooks' columns.



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posted by Ace at 04:30 PM

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