By Bill O'Reilly
As you may know, Kansas City Chiefs football player Jovan Belcher murdered his girlfriend, the mother of his 3-month-old daughter and drove to Arrowhead Stadium and committed suicide in front of his coaches. It doesn't get worse than that. Belcher used a handgun to commit his crimes.
There are many different aspects to this case. But NBC sportscaster Bob Costas brought one of them into the arena last night when he quoted a Kansas City sports writer named Jason Whitlock who assigned some of the blame for the horrible crime to gun possession.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOB COSTAS, NBC SPORTSCASTER: "Our current gun culture," Whitlock wrote "ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy and that more convenient store confrontations over loud music coming from a car will lead more teenage boys bloodied and dead. Hand guns do not enhance our safety. They exacerbate our flaws tempt us to escalate arguments and bait us into embracing confrontation rather than avoiding it."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
O'REILLY: Well, even if you believe what Costas and Whitlock are putting out there, what's the solution? The Constitution gives Americans the right to protect themselves, that's clear. In many parts of the country people need hand guns in order to feel secure against criminals who might harm them.
"Talking Points" has long felt that criminals who use handguns should be punished more harshly than they are now. In fact, all gun crimes in America should be federalized and that includes illegal possession. The level of aggression that a criminal brings is far greater when that criminal uses a gun. A lethal weapon is just that... lethal.
And so there should be mandatory federal prison time for any person convicted of having a gun illegally and if you commit a crime with a gun that mandatory should be 10 years.
That would go a long way toward stopping gun violence in the USA but you're not going to stop it completely. There will always be people like Mr. Belcher who lose control. And you cannot disarm the entire American population to combat madness. It would be madness to even try that.
And the past 10 years there has been an increase in the number of handguns in America. There may be 100 million of them in circulation right now. But there has been a decrease in handgun crime. 10 years ago there are about 7,000 handgun murders. Last year the number was about 6,000 it is quite understandable that people are reacting emotionally to this terrible crime in Kansas City.
But the problem America has is not law abiding citizens possessing weapons. That's not damaging the nation. Crimes committed with handguns and out-of-control people -- that's what's hurting the USA. You'll never stop crimes of madness, you're never going to stop them like the Kansas City situation.
But you can put violent criminals away for a long time if they use a gun during the commission of a crime. And that should be done.
And that's "The Memo."