How does it feel to be a journalist from an NRA-supporting family?

Adam Tinworth
Adam Tinworth

This is a thought-provoking piece from a journalist who grew up in an NRA member family in the USA:

My father’s interest in guns began as a young man who saved up to buy 60 acres in the Maine wilderness where he could hunt, inspired by tales of Daniel Boone. When he had a family, guns morphed into a way to defend his wife and children in a town without a readily available police force. We always had an N.R.A. sticker on the back of our truck. I didn’t think much about it.

In essence, it’s a plea for empathy and sophistication in our reporting. She is troubled by the media portrayal of NRA members as:

being complicit to mass murder. N.R.A. members like my father are being called “evil,” “scared, paranoid, radicalized,” and equated with the KKK.

Clearly, guns and shooting in the US are a tremendously emotive issue, especially at the moment. But it’s a timely reminder – especially to those of us who live outside the US and don’t really understand the culture about guns – that stereotyping is rarely a useful contribution to reporting.


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Adam is a lecturer, trainer and writer. He's been a blogger for over 20 years, and a journalist for more than 30. He lectures on audience strategy and engagement at City, University of London.