Celebrated journalist Katie Couric is coming under fire for her role in an anti-gun documentary Under the Gun.
The film’s director, Stephanie Soechtig, is accused of manufacturing a long pause of nine seconds in the film that did not exist in the original taping of the film.
The crafty editing of the film might not have been noticed if there wasn’t an audio recording of the question-and-answer session to validate the claims of the critics.
Couric, who is also an executive producer of the film, asked members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, a pro-Second Amendment group, a seemingly tough question: “If there are no background checks for gun purchasers, how do you prevent felons or terrorists from purchasing a gun?”
In the finished version of the film, editors combined video to lengthen the response time between the time the question was given and the question was answered. The resulting edit omitted the answers altogether, inserting in their place a nine-second pause.
In reality, the question was answered immediately by an attendee who stated if the felons weren’t in jail then they should have their rights to own a firearm restored. The long pause makes it appear as if the respondents didn’t have an immediate answer to the question on background checks, which could lead viewers to conclude they have not properly considered the broader implications of disallowing background checks.
One person in the video even lowered his head, appearing not to know the answer.
But audio of the interview revealed more than one respondent had an immediate answer to Couric’s question. The second respondent said statutes and laws were already on the books which prohibited certain individuals from obtaining a firearm.
According to Fox News, Culture of Alarmism director Julie Gunlock responded by saying, “Katie Couric should be ashamed of herself for her dishonest and distorted reporting on this issue. She has gone from respected journalist to propagandist for gun control groups. Her tactics have been exposed and Americans should never again trust her to report on these important issues.”
The National Rifle Association tweeted the edits were a “stunning betrayal of journalistic ethics” and posted a link to the scandal. And in an earlier tweet the gun rights organization said Couric “should be ashamed of herself.”
— NRA (@NRA) May 26, 2016
Both Soechtig and Couric responded to the outrage.
“My intention was to provide a pause for the viewer to have a moment to consider this important question before presenting the facts on Americans’ opinions on background checks,” Soechtig said in a statement. “I never intended to make anyone look bad and I apologize if anyone felt that way.”
Couric was unapologetic, only saying, “I support Stephanie’s statement and am very proud of the film.”
— Dana Loesch (@DLoesch) May 26, 2016
h/t: USA Radio