Breaking: Journalist does his job. Paul Ryan: “That was kinda strange”

In a stunning development, a TV reporter in Detroit by the name of Terry Camp has caused Paul Ryan to suffer a slightly challenging interview.

Camp just would not allow Wisconsin’s wunderkind to skate over and around the issue of gun violence in America. Camp clearly did not get the press memo on gun violence which states that if neither presidential candidate is making the problem their focus then he can’t either.

Ryan said we need “strong gun laws” and that “charities, and civic groups and churches” will take care of recreating “civil society” for us and that “big government” just makes it “worse”.

Paul Ryan is applying for the big government job of Vice President and he’s saying in a very kind and convoluted way that big government can do only harm in this area. Or in other words: “I will do absolutely nothing about gun violence”.

But Camp is persistent. He goes in for getting Ryan to admit there is a “gun problem” at the 1 minute and 26 second mark. Which is scandalous indeed since it is very close to “guns are a problem”.

Ryan quickly sidesteps Camp: “This country has a _crime_ problem.”

Then Terry Camp said: “And a gun problem.”

Then Ryan with all his strength suppresses the urge to strangle Camp and reaches once more to explain the magical solution provided by charities and makes it clear that they can transform cities like Detroit by teaching “people good discipline, good character – that is civil society”.

Then Camp, being a journalist and doing his job, tries to nudge Ryan into clarifying how the cutting of taxes might lead to this great transformation.

At the 1:56 mark–
Camp: And you can do all that by cutting taxes. With a big tax cut.

If Paul Ryan wore pearls, he’d next be clutching them to his bosom in a gasp.

Paul Ryan: Those are your words not mine.

Man off-camera in we’ve-had-enough-of-this voice: Thank you very much sir.

*Ryan starts taking off his microphone*

Paul Ryan glaring at Camp: That was kinda strange. Trying to stuff words in peoples’ mouths.

Where is Terry Camp right now and how might I shake his hand or buy him a beverage or hand him the key to my city?

The bits leading into that are also quite interesting.

Camp gets the conversation rolling by asking about “gun violence”. Ryan responds by saying “Well look. We had the Oak Creek shooting in my district. The Sikh shooting.”

Let’s pause the video right there, shall we?

Paul Ryan is talking to Camp as they both sit in Detroit. DETROIT.

Gun violence there doesn’t happen only when the occasional employee or skin head does a mass shooting. Gun violence is so pervasive and constant in Detroit that residency in its emergency rooms are considered a must for would-be experts in bullet wounds. Gun violence is so bad in Detroit that St. Cecilia Catholic Church spent $16,820 to get 365 guns off the street 2 months ago. Gun violence is so bad in Detroit that when 100 people marched in the street in July against gun violence it was the THIRD TIME a march of that nature was held in detroit in the same damn year. If Ryan didn’t know that, he could just look up the stats: Detroit suffers 35.9 gun deaths per every 100,000 residents while the nation suffers 2.98 (UK is shaking its head at us – they have 0.03 per 100 thou).

Ryan responds with the typical “it’s a tragedy”. He spends a millisecond on that to show a modicum of empathy and then he goes into a traditional NRA bit – “bad people” commit crimes. Certainly people shoot guns, guns don’t shoot guns. Or to be more specific guns don’t shoot guns until we develop the robotics necessary for it.

Hitting play again:

“More gun laws have not proven to actually solve these problems.” Ryan says.

STOP! Hit pause.

Actually, it’s not “more” gun laws. It’s stricter gun laws. At least I think that’s what Ryan meant. Apparently Ryan does not read Atlantic Cities. If he did, he’d learn that “Firearm deaths are significantly lower in states with stricter gun control legislation”

And hitting Play again:
“We need economic growth, this is why we need education reform, this is why we need to promote equality of opportunity and upward mobility in society so that people are out of these terrible conditions. So they can get onto lives of self sufficiency. If we deal with those problems – the problems of civil society the problems of helping our communities — Big government doesn’t do that. Big government makes it worse. Those are the kind of reforms we’re talking about. What do you do to create good jobs, to create prosperity, to help charities and people that are in communities to help one another.”


That last spiel gets to auctioneer speed by the end. I had to replay it 10 times to catch it all.

Notice that “big government” is causing problems. That’s code for “I am slashing the budget for any and all social service programs”. That’s also a much-beloved term of Scott Walker and is also used to reference anything public union-related. Like those damn public librarians, public school teachers, city snow plow drivers and the like.

And notice if you will “charities” and people helping “one another”. This is the spiel Ryan had at his Janesville send-off speech. The man is full of it but at least he’s consistent.

Allow me to translate Mr. Ryan’s Charity-Not-Government spiel as I hear it.:
You people! Buddy up. Support each other into perpetuity. Do not bother your federal government for every little thing such as the social security, medicaid, medicare and whatnot that you’ve been paying taxes for since you drew your first paycheck [you suckers] and thus, are entitled to.

You journalists! Do not ask probing questions that might throw a politician off his talking points.

Thank you very much, sir!

Back up link to video Paul Ryan Ends Interview After “Strange” Question From Local

More reading:
Gun violence is a U.S. public health problem

The Geography of Gun Violence


4 thoughts on “Breaking: Journalist does his job. Paul Ryan: “That was kinda strange”

  1. Did anybody catch the “even President Obama isn’t proposing any new gun laws” line. Hopefully the NRA will now pull their false ads.

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