Hollywood Takes Aim at Gun Rights

Harvey Weinstein plans to attack the NRA in his next film.

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Harvey Weinstein, Co-Chairman, The Weinstein Company, speaks on stage at The Weinstein Company's Los Angeles premiere of "August: Osage County" in partnership with Bombardier at Regal Cinemas L.A. Live on Monday, Dec. 16, 2013.
Harvey Weinstein, co-chairman of the Weinstein Company.

Harvey Weinstein says his next film is going to "take down" the National Rifle Association.

Speaking on the Howard Stern Show, and confirmed by the entertainment blog Deadline, the Hollywood super-producer said his upcoming film, titled "The Senator's Wife," "will expose the NRA for their behind the scenes machinations of what (President) Obama himself called 'intimidation' and 'lies' that ended up defeating legislation that would have expanded background checks on gun sales." According to the blog, the film, which will star Oscar-winner Meryl Streep and others on the film colony's A List, will be "a behind-the-scenes account of how the NRA used its influence with politicians to defeat the bill."

He's not the only member of the Hollywood elite concerned about gun violence. Every year there are approximately 30,000 gun-related deaths – two-thirds of which are suicides. Some people, especially advocates for stronger gun control, have called it an "epidemic" and are demanding the politicians in Washington do something about it.

[See a collection of political cartoons on gun control and gun rights.]

Weinstein, who is famous for having helmed such handgun happy film projects as "Django Unchained," "Grindhouse," "Kill Bill: Vol. I" and "Kill Bill: Vol. II," and "Pulp Fiction," is a man who knows his violence. He recently told CNN's Piers Morgan that he was having second thoughts about being a purveyor of on-screen violence and terror, saying he no longer was "going to make some crazy action movie just to blow up people and exploit people just for the sake of making it."

It's not clear if he means it, as "Kill Bill: Vol. III" is reportedly now in development even though there was apparently no one, let alone Bill, left to kill at the end of the second film. Nonetheless, it's nice to hear someone in the film business is serious about using film to affect the perceptions of the American public about one of the nation's oldest civil rights organizations and the right we as a free people enjoy to possess firearms, which appears explicitly in the United States Constitution's Bill of Rights and was recently affirmed by the United States Supreme Court.

If Weinstein really wanted to have an impact on a pressing social problem, he might, instead of guns, focus on the horrors associated with the multi-billion dollar abortion industry. If 30,000 gun-related deaths get him excited, then the conservatively estimated 3 million abortions performed each year in America might send him spinning off into a heretofore unknown pleasure zone of civic mindedness.

It's not like there isn't a lot of literature on the subject of the horrors of legal abortion. Many women have written extensively about the regret they now feel about having had one. Or he could do a film from the perspective of a woman or man, and there are more than a few out there, who were the object of a late-term abortion but somehow miraculously survived. Either would make for a compelling drama, even without Meryl Streep attached to the project.

[Check out 2013: The Year in Cartoons]

If Weinstein wanted go at it from "the ripped from the headlines" perspective, he could bring all his Hollywood skills to bear making the story of the brave men and women who turned in and prosecuted Philadelphia abortionist Dr. Kermit Gosnell, whose practice apparently consisted of more than a few instances where an unborn baby was ripped from its mother's womb.

Unfortunately, none of that is every going to happen. The elites in Hollywood hate guns – at least as long as there aren't any riots underway in South Central Los Angeles. Like Weinstein, they've been willing in the past to make millions of dollars glamorizing gun play on the screen, but some of the more astute liberals out on the West Coast are now bowing to social pressure to make guns and gun owners and gun rights groups the focus of attack rather than the source of excitement or amusement. These same elites consider abortion an unimpeachable civil right, for the woman carrying the baby anyway, and would dare do nothing to suggest otherwise. Never mind that the ratio of deaths each year is 100 to 1 – it's a taboo subject unless the abortionist is the hero or the woman who wants one can be portrayed as a victim of an unfeeling, judgmental patriarchy.

There are millions upon millions of lawful, licensed gun owners in America whose rights are constantly under assault because a relatively few people engage in unlawful acts, no matter how horrific. Abortion, meanwhile, continues unchecked in spite of recent polls showing it is losing public support and with more and more people willing to put limits on the practice. But what movie does Harvey Weinstein want to make? The whole thing shows just how out of whack Hollywood values are, especially when you consider that – based on how liberal message movies are performing at the box office – people aren't going to see them. Maybe he should follow legendary producer Sam Goldwyn's advice about using Western Union to send a message instead of the movies.

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