Bob Costas' Losing Bet on Guns

Bob Costas once again waded into the gun control debate, this time voicing a curious and ill-informed opinion on late-night television. According to Politico, Costas wants to make a wager on whether athletes owning guns causes more harm than good.

In a discussion with "Late Night" host Seth Meyers, Costas said:
"Let's make a bet, you and me. Let's say over the next five years we'll do a Google search. We'll have an independent party monitor it. You keep track of how many good and constructive things are associated with athletes having a gun, and I'll keep track of all the tragedies and criminality and folly. And let's see who comes out ahead or behind as the case may be."

I'll take that bet any day and I know that if we actually tallied the results I would come out ahead. All I have to do is look at the pro athletes who hunt and do charity work to know that these people perform a lot of good through the values associated with gun and hunting culture. But most of this occurs behind the scenes and doesn't make good headline-grabbing fodder of the negative sort that Costas is counting on in order to win his bet.

One great example is the shooting events put on by Boomer Esiason in support of research for cystic fibrosis. Boomer is hardly alone in this. The NFL Alumni Charity regularly hosts fund-raising events at sporting clays courses around the country for myriad good causes.

And if you dig a little deeper you'll find similar examples of good-works-through-guns in sports ranging from baseball, to rodeo, to NASCAR.

Perhaps the biggest cognitive dissonance with Costas' statements is the fact that we have an amazing community of athletes in this country who are shooters, both at the professional and amateur level. He should take a look at USA Shooting for starters.

The idea that these talented and dedicated athletes represent a negative influence on society is as insulting as it is absurd.

When it comes to guns, Costas needs to pull his head out of his nether regions and open his eyes before he opens his mouth.