Jim Jefferies Thinks We Can All Do Better

I became familiar with Australian comedian Jim Jefferies after a college roommate showed me his now infamous 15-minute-long diatribe on gun control. It was a sarcastic, evidence-laden lecture teasing Americans for our wanton adoration of firearms.

“I am all for your Second Amendment rights,” said Jefferies. “I think you should be able to have guns – it’s in your Constitution. What I am not for is bullshit arguments and lies. There is one argument and one argument alone for having guns: F&%k off – I like guns! It’s not the best argument, but it’s all you’ve got.”

The New Yorker praised his “brilliant, hilarious, and astonishingly complete discussion” of the gun control debacle. Even pro-gun commentator Dan Zimmerman admitted, “This is best summary of the gun control lobby’s arguments that I have ever heard.”

GIF courtesy of Tumblr user Alan Macraffen.

GIF courtesy of Tumblr user Alan Macraffen.

Material like that propelled Jeffries career forward, and he is now part of Comedy Central’s stellar late-night roster, sitting behind the desk of The Jim Jefferies Show. Jefferies quips about politics, creates outlandish stunts and uses a mashup of news clips to highlight the ridiculous, repetitive buzzwords in mainstream news reports. One hilarious montage showed multiple news sources calling the GOP health bill “secretive,” leading to Jefferies’ astute conclusion that the bill is akin to the self-help pseudo-scientific book, The Secret.

Watch a clip:

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Should Someone on the Terror Watch List Be Able to Buy a Gun? Katie Couric Goes Under The Gun to Explore America’s Gun Culture

Did you know Teddy bear production and distribution is regulated more intensely than that of guns?

This is just one of many sobering facts presented in Katie Couric’s documentary Under the Gun. Executive producer Couric and director Stephanie Soechtig hope their film can change the discourse on gun violence.

flagThe documentary, which premiered in January at the Sundance Film Festival, explores this simple question: why is it so hard to keep guns out of the hands of the wrong people?

It combines the compelling stories of victims, such as families affected by the mass shooting in Newtown Connecticut, with evidence of our nation’s gun problem, while acknowledging and exploring the principal arguments of gun rights advocates.

Still, it can be nearly impossible to sway opinions on Americans’ Second Amendment rights. In his review for Variety, Geoff Berkshire wrote, “…the goal here isn’t to change minds; it’s to reignite the anger of the silent majority — those familiar feelings that bubble up and then dissipate whenever another mass shooting occurs.”

You can see for yourself on May 15, when Under the Gun makes its world television premiere on EPIX.

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Mother’s Day Is Meant for Activism

by Debra Lee, BET Networks

Debra Lee BET Honors“Arise, then, women of this day! Arise all women who have hearts whether our baptism be that of water or of fears…Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience…From the bosom of the devastated earth a voice goes up with our own.  It says “Disarm, Disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.”

These lines are taken from Julia Ward Howe’s original Mother’s Day Proclamation from 1870. Mother’s Day was conceived as an activist holiday. She looked at the carnage caused by the Civil War and asked herself “why do not the mothers’ of mankind interfere in the matters to prevent the waste of human life which they alone bear and know the cost?” Read More