Judiciary gun violence hearing witnesses announced


The Senate Judiciary Committee is set to hold its second hearing on firearms in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy – and the witness list gives at least an inkling on the direction the probe is going.

The hearing is entitled “Proposals to Reduce Gun Violence: Protecting Our Communities While Respecting the Second Amendment” and is being held by the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights. It’s scheduled for Tuesday 2/12/13 at 10AM eastern.

There will be two panels, and the witness list gives no indication that media content is even on the agenda.

Here’s who will be testifying and answering questions:

Panel I
* Timothy J. Heaphy, United States Attorney, Western District of Virginia, United States Department of Justice, Washington, DC

Panel II
* Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor, Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA
* Dr. Daniel Webster, Director and Professor, Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, Baltimore, MD
* Sandra J. Wortham, Chicago, IL
* Charles J. Cooper, Partner, Cooper & Kirk, PLLC, Washington, DC
* Suzanna Hupp, Lampasas, TX

RBR-TVBR observation: We think it is wise to put the focus first on the primary elements at the core of this issue. The discussion should first and foremost be about, well, guns. What is the proper relationship between reasonable regulation and adherence to the Second Amendment? What about mental illness?

It is easy to distract attention from core issues by blaming the media, about any of a thousand issues. But it is extremely difficult to make such a charge stick, if for no other reason than the millions upon millions of media users who are not prone, in this particular case, to gun violence.

So we applaud the Senate Judiciary Committee’s apparent decision to get to the heart of the matter and to seeminnly save the media for later or leave it out entirely.