The Corner


Jimmy Kimmel Badly Contradicted Himself Last Night

Last night, in the course of his much-vaunted gun-control soliloquy, Jimmy Kimmel said the following:

I’ve been reading comments from people saying, ‘This is terrible, but there’s nothing we can do about it.’ But I disagree with that intensely, because of course there’s something we can do about it. There are a lot of things we can do about it. But we don’t. Which is interesting, because when someone with a beard attacks us, we tap phones, we invoke travel bans, we build walls, we take every possible precaution to make sure it doesn’t happen again. But when an American buys a gun and kills other Americans, then there’s nothing we can do about that.

There’s a glaring problem with this line of reasoning, and it’s a problem that undercuts his entire spiel. That problem? That Kimmel is in fact opposed to “our” responses to those dastardly “people with beards,” and on the grounds that they don’t work. By his own admission, Kimmel is not in favor of Trump’s travel ban, and he’s not in favor of Trump’s wall. To Kimmel, in fact, these policies serve as solid and mockworthy examples of the sort of ill-advised, knee-jerk reactions that we tend to see in the aftermath of tragedy. Despite this opposition, he’s apparently for emulating that approach when the impetus is gun control, even if it means recycling all of the same hole-filled, detail-lacking talking points that we have heard year upon year, even if it means repeating falsehoods, and even if it means advocating the same old policies that have done nothing to help the problem. Frankly, that makes no sense.

One must ask, “Which is it, Jimmy?” Are our responses to being attacked so often stupid? Or are they merely an example of our “taking every possible precaution?” If the former, you’ll understand why “we can fix it!” is met with such skepticism. If the latter, you should support President Trump. Either way, you can’t use one in defense of the other.

This isn’t a competition to see who is the most sad. In no circumstance would I suggest that Kimmel were indifferent toward terrorism because he opposes Trump’s “solutions.” On the contrary, I’m aware that he may well be as upset as is everyone else, but believe simultaneously that the “fix” ain’t gonna work. I’d appreciate the same courtesy in return. Those of us who didn’t shout “gun control!” yesterday were not “fine” with what happened in Vegas. Rather, we are of the considered view that taking “every possible precaution” often achieves nothing at all. It may be indeed be the case that we react more to some things than others. But if that’s a bad thing — and it often is — we need less of it, not more. 

Most Popular


On Trade, No One Is Waiting for Washington

President Donald Trump’s flips and flops on trade are now as ubiquitous as his 5:00 a.m. tweets. Many predicted that trade-expansion efforts would come to a standstill and world commerce would suffer amidst all the uncertainty. Instead, the precise opposite has happened. In the last few months, it’s become ... Read More
National Security & Defense

Trump’s Syria Quandary

President Trump raised eyebrows recently when he ended a tweet lauding the airstrikes he’d ordered against chemical-weapons facilities in Syria with the words “mission accomplished.” The phrase, of course, became infamous in the aftermath of the invasion of Iraq, when President Bush used it in a speech ... Read More

Confirm Pompeo

What on earth are the Democrats doing? President Trump has nominated CIA director Mike Pompeo, eminently qualified by any reasonable standard, to be America’s 70th secretary of state. And yet the Senate Democrats, led by Chuck Schumer, have perverted the advice and consent clause of the Constitution into a ... Read More
PC Culture

The Dark Side of the Starbucks Stand-Down

By now the story is all over America. Earlier this month, two black men entered a Starbucks store in Philadelphia. They were apparently waiting for a friend before ordering — the kind of thing people do every day — and one of the men asked to use the restroom. A Starbucks employee refused, saying the restroom ... Read More