In the wake of last week’s tragic mass shooting in Charleston, SC, we feel it is not an appropriate time to cover the comparatively trivial goings-on of the sports world. In the first installment of a seven-part series on violence, race, and class in America, we will delve into the topic of gun use and legislation. Joining us to add what will surely be an illuminating perspective is gun-control advocate and inspiration for the famed Brady Bill, Thomas Brady.
CSB: Mr. Thomas Brady, our sincerest thanks to you for lending your voice to this conversation. It is an honor and a privilege to be seated across from such a luminary of public policy.
TB: Guys, you’ve got it wrong. I have nothing to do with the Brady Bill. I am Tom Brady, quarterback of the New England Patriots.
CSB: Oh, we’re sorry, Thomas Brady Jr. Can you give your dad a call and tell him to come down to our offices?
TB: We’re not related. He’s Jim Brady, a totally different guy, and I think he died last year. Yeah, I definitely remember reading that on Buzzfeed during a preseason game.
CSB: Wow. We’re sorry for your loss. So, do you think the Charleston murders will finally be the impetus to expand background checks at the federal level?
TB: My heart is with the victims, and I think we can all play a role in the healing process. But I’m not the person to ask about gun control. I’m not an expert, and I have nothing meaningful to contribute. I’d love to talk football, though.
CSB: That is just offensive, Tom Brady. Football at a time like this? You’re part of the problem. Would you mind if we took a look at the websites you’ve been frequenting lately?
TB: You know, I think it would be best if I just got going.
CSB: No! Do you know how much we spent to fly you out here? It’ll just be a few more questions. So, what do you think about a proposed ban on shotguns?
TB: Well, I personally wouldn’t support it, because we operate out of the shotgun a good amount of the time. It really allows us to spread the field, and I can get a quick release, even if it’s just a screen or a short slant. It’s crazy how much talk we’re hearing in sports about commissioners overreaching their authority. No more shifts in baseball? No more Hack-a-Howard? And now they’re talking about getting rid of the shotgun? Typical Roger. It’s a shame that innocent people are killed while he keeps on–never mind. I didn’t mean that. Don’t print that, okay?
CSB: We definitely won’t. Moving on, which presidential candidate do you think provides the most hope for sensible gun policy?
TB: Please, let’s stay away from politics, alright? Actually… I’ve been thinking about the whole situation I’ve been going through this offseason, and I have some things I’m ready to say. It’s time to come clean.
CSB: That sounds like a lovely moment of personal growth for you, but please, there’s no place for football at a time like this. Regarding the Second Amend–
TB (interrupts): You don’t understand. I’m giving you guys the chance to blow the lid off this thing. I like your site. You’ve been fair to me. You’re not like those jackals at ESPN, or as I like to call them, Experts Supporting Patriots Never.
CSB: You’re very creative with acronyms. Speaking of acronyms, the NRA–
TB: For the last time: it’s horrible that people died, and that there are still such hateful feelings in our country, but I don’t know anything about guns, or race relations, or politics in general. Are we clear? Now, I’m tired of carrying this around with me. Do you know The Tell-Tale Heart? Have you ever seen that movie? Because I have, in Mrs. Nathanson’s class in seventh grade. It sucks to hear that thump thump all day long, to feel it coming right out of my chest. So, here goes: earlier this year, before the AFC Championship against the Colts, I–
CSB: Hey, look who just walked in the door! It’s Dave Crawley of the Center for Fewer Firearms! And right behind him is Catherine Komstock of the Right To Bear Army! This is going to be one humdinger of a debate. Finally, some people with something interesting to say. Thanks for nothing, Fake Jim Brady.
CSB: Out with you! You’re the scourge of healthy dialogue in America. Now, debaters, please take your positions at the podiums we somehow prepared for you, even though we didn’t know you were coming.
TB (on phone): Hey, can you get me on the line with someone from Fox Sports 1? Yeah, sure, whatever, Andy Roddick is fine.
CSB: Mr. Brady, a security escort is on his way to remove you from the premises. Now, let’s get this debate started. My first question is for Mr. Crawley: what’s your favorite football team?