MSNBC host Ed Schultz expressed sympathy with gun owners on Tuesday while lashing out at special-interest groups and the makers of the video game Grand Theft Auto V, accusing them of helping foment a political atmosphere that stifles discussion on stricter gun safety laws that could prevent more mass shootings like the one at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday.
“I understand going out pheasant hunting and duck hunting and going moose hunting,” said Schultz, a self-avowed hunter and fisherman for more than 40 years. “There are people in the middle of the country and all pockets of the country who think that that lifestyle, that choice of activity, is going to be threatened if we pass any gun laws whatsoever. The special-interest groups play on the fears of these gun owners. This is one of the reasons we can’t get enything done, even when 91 percent of the American people want to do something on it.”
Schultz also argued to his viewers that their childrens’ attention over the past 24 hours may have been focused on the game, which was released early Tuesday morning. He did not mention that the game is explicitly labeled as being for users ages 17 and older.
“It’s got shooting people, stealing cars and beating up hookers,” Schultz said of the game. “If you’re a parent, and you allow your son or daughter to watch this — even if they’re beyond 18 years old — you’re a lousy parent in my opinion, and you play a role in this.”
Watch Schultz’s remarks, aired Tuesday, below.