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Jason Alexander starts gun control debate on Twitter
The former Seinfeld star called for a civilian ban on assault weapons following Friday’s tragic mass shooting in Colorado.
The gun control debate will soon inevitably ramp up, but actor Jason Alexander wants you to know how he feels about the issue. The former Seinfeld star took to Twitter on Sunday to tell his followers that he supports a civilian ban on assault weapons.
After offering his sympathy to the victims of the Colorado theater shootings, Alexander launched into a long argument as to why he thinks assault weapons (like the AR-15, which was allegedly used in the shootings) should be banned and addressed criticisms launched at him.
“There is no excuse for the propagation of these weapons,” wrote Alexander. “They are not guaranteed or protected by our Constitution. If they were, then we could all run out and purchase a tank, a grenade launcher, a bazooka, a SCUD missile and a nuclear warhead.”
Alexander also wrote that the Constitution only allows people to bear arms if they are part of a “well-regulated militia,” which he says a “vast majority” of people in the United States aren’t in. Weapons, like the AR-15, should be placed in the hands of “accountable,” “controlled,” and “trained hands.”
“They should not be in the hands of private citizens to be used against police, neighborhood intruders or people who don’t agree with you,” he wrote.
Alexander encouraged a civilized discourse on gun control.
“But this is not the time for reasonable people, on both sides of this issue, to be silent,” he concluded. “We owe it to the people whose lives were ended and ruined yesterday to insist on a real discussion and hopefully on some real action.”
The tweet racked up 8,200 retweets, 2,500 favorites, and countless tweets from all sides of the argument. Some Twitter users said Alexander’s stance was “well said,” thanked him for his “honest thoughts,” and said they’d changed their perceptions about the actor.
“I’d say @IJasonAlexander for president, but I think he’s too smart to run for office,” tweeted @GabbyGail.
Of course, like any argument on Twitter, some people lashed out at him and called him an “idiot” and said a left-leaning Hollywood actor shouldn’t be making political statements. Alexander spent some time on Sunday retweeting those criticisms directed at him.
Following the responses, Alexander tweeted again that he is overwhelmed by the responses and insisted he is not anti-gun ownership
“I merely believe we need to have a rational discussion about the pros and cons of where we draw the line on civilian ownership of the range of weapons and instruments of violence that exist,” he wrote.
Photo via Twitter
A former editorial operations specialist and staff writer for the Daily Dot, Jordan Valinsky is a tech reporter and web culture commentator. His work has been published by the Week, Digiday, CNNMoney, Popular Mechanics, Vice, Mic, and Betabeat.