In comments drawing heat from the right-wing, comedian Chris Rock said Wednesday at an event organized by Mayors Against Illegal Guns that he supports the president’s recent gun control proposals because he and the first lady are “kind of like the mom and the dad of the country.”
“The president of the United States is, you know, our boss,” he said. “But he’s also, you know, the president and the first lady are kind of like the mom and the dad of the country. And when your dad says something, you listen, and when you don’t it usually bites you in the ass later on.”
That quote did not sit well with his critics. Appearing Thursday morning on the conservative Fox News Channel, blogger Michelle Malkin suggested that Rock needs “group therapy,” and remarked that the press conference “looked like a hostage video to me.” Malkin added that she does not “want a dad who wears mom jeans.”
Rock previously joked in one of his stand-up comedy routines that gun control is unneeded. “Men, we need to control the bullets,” he said. “That’s right. I think all bullets should cost five thousand dollars… You know why? Because if a bullet cost five thousand dollars there would be no more innocent bystanders.”
Other celebrities who joined Wednesday’s star-studded event included singer Tony Bennett, actress Amanda Peet and actor Adam Scott. “After Sandy Hook, if we as a people don’t act, then what’s next?” Scott asked.
Mayors Against Illegal Guns also ran an ad during the Super Bowl featuring decades-old footage of National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre voicing support for universal background checks, which he now opposes.
Obama has proposed a series of wide-ranging fixes (PDF) to the nation’s arms industry that hope to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill. Among the proposals are measures to require instant criminal background checks for all gun sales, and increasing funding for youth mental health programs. The president’s plan would also see the nation hiring more police officers and ensuring they go through rigorous training to deal with active shooter situations.
Polling by Gallup found that all of Obama’s proposals enjoy a majority of support among Americans, including the most controversial among them: limiting the sales of ammunition magazines containing more than 10 bullets, a move supported by 54 percent of Americans.
This video is from CBS, aired Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2013.