Read the following sensational “mainstream media” headlines firing up the news world tonight:
New York Daily News: “Sean Hannity pointed gun at Fox News colleague Juan Williams on set”
Wow, let’s think about this: “Sean Hannity once pulled a gun on Juan Williams.” What does that headline imply? It implies that the top-rated conservative TV and radio host somehow became so unhinged and out-of-control that he literally threatened the life of liberal guest Juan Williams. Sounds like a criminal act committed by a total maniac.
Indeed, as CNN’s Dylan Byers writes in the article: “Last year, after ending one of his many spirited on-air arguments with liberal contributor Juan Williams, Hannity pulled out a gun and pointed it directly at Williams.”
Incredible. Except – it’s just more fake news.
You see, in reality, what happened was that after the “Hannity” show was over one evening last October, Hannity showed his longtime friend his unloaded gun on the set.
As Williams himself tweeted tonight, in response to all the hysterical “mainstream” news coverage: ”This incident is being sensationalized – everything was under total control throughout and I never felt like I was put in harm’s way.
“It was clear that Sean put my safety and security above all else and we continue to be great friends.”
Hannity explains it this way: “While discussing the issue of firearms, I showed my good friend Juan Williams my unloaded firearm in a professional and safe manner for educational purposes only. Every precautionary procedure that I have been trained in since the age of 11 was followed. I’ve had a conceal carry permit in five states for all of my adult life. Any other interpretation of this is outright false reporting.”
Fox News corporate agrees with both Hannity and Williams that it’s a big nothing-burger: “Sean Hannity has been trained in firearm safety since he was 11 years old and has a license to carry a gun in five states, including New York. The situation was thoroughly investigated and it was found that no one was put in any danger.”
And yet, in trying to put Hannity’s alleged on-set gun-slinging into context, CNN’s Dylan Byers prefaces his “Sean threatened Juan” scoop with the following observations, as if to demonstrate the suspect’s deranged state of mind:
“Since Trump’s victory, Hannity has become downright conspiratorial. … He has embraced the idea that there is a ‘deep state’ of federal officials working to undermine Trump from within government.”
Pause-button, please: The last several months of news have comprised a non-stop prosecutorial case demonstrating precisely such efforts by entrenched, anti-Trump federal employees to sabotage the new president, including through naked violations of the Espionage Act. But I digress.
Back to CNN’s attack on Hannity: “He now calls the mainstream media the ‘propaganda press’ and the ‘alt-left.'”
Hey Dylan, the truth hurts. I feel your pain.
More from CNN’s Byers: “Earlier this month, Hannity conducted an interview with Monica Crowley, the conservative commentator who would have become Trump’s deputy national security adviser were it not for her rampant plagiarism, which was uncovered by CNN’s KFile. Hannity announced that anyone who had questions about Crowley’s plagiarism – which, again, had been well documented – could ‘go to hell.'”
However, as the respected former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy explained in National Review, Crowley’s actual errors were minor and the plagiarism allegations – surfacing just as she was about to become President Trump’s senior director of communications at the National Security Council – were wildly overblown as a means of discrediting her and knocking her out of the Trump administration.
In fact, McCarthy quoted well-respected copyright attorney Lynn Chu, who conducted a careful study of the plagiarism allegations against Crowley, and not only “found CNN’s splashy ‘plagiarism’ accusation to be ill-supported – a heavily exaggerated, political hit job” – but even found that CNN omitted Crowley’s end notes in its reporting so as to make it appear she was failing to credit her sources.
Sounds like it’s CNN, not Hannity, that has the problem with reckless behavior and not only threatening – but hurting – innocent people. But that’s what happens when you’re really, really angry. And since its disgraceful performance during and since the 2016 presidential election season, CNN – along with other demoralized mainstream media outfits – is just really, really angry, and itching for revenge.