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January 30th, 2013
02:39 PM ET

Clips From Last Night: NFL referee controversy and a Milwaukee Sheriff encourages residents to arm themselves

On Tuesday evening, "Piers Morgan Tonight" welcomed guests Ben Austro, the editor of FootballZebras.com, and Ray Anderson, EVP of football operations for the NFL, to address the recent controversy concerning this year's Superbowl head referee Jerome Boger. Austro broke the story regarding allegations that Boger was chosen to lead the crew because he is African American after grades that were given by supervisors were changed apparently to make him look more qualified.

"Everybody is off the record because they don't want to - they fear retribution," said Austro. "But consistently I'm hearing eight downgrades."

"And he's been dinged eight times this season. And all eight of them have been appealed. And so they were all successful appeals, and gave him a perfect record, as the result."

Anderson responded to Austro's findings as "patently false" saying, "Whoever Mr. Austro's anonymous sources are have really misled him and misrepresented the facts to him."

"His information is inaccurate. It's unfair," said Anderson. "We are about diversity, that is true. But to suggest that him being black got him into the Superbowl, that's insulting and that is offensive on multiple levels."

Also on the program, Milwaukee Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett joined Piers Morgan to discuss a radio ad put out by Clarke telling Milwaukee residents to arm themselves.

"There's an emerging situation in the Milwaukee area," explained Clarke. "Fewer and fewer law enforcement resources - and I'm not going to be afraid to engage the citizenry in imminent circumstances."

Barrett responded to Clarke's ad calling it "irresponsible" and noted that, "The sheriff is not the law enforcement officer that has jurisdiction over the Milwaukee Police Department."

"And the fact is that that ad implies that the sheriff and the sheriff's forces are going to come to residences when they call 911. That simply isn't true."

Watch the clip and listen to the interview as Morgan wonders if Clarke's advocacy of armed citizens is creating "a return to the wild west in Milwaukee."

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Filed under: Guns in America • The Big Story
soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. MarkinCA

    Mr. Morgan again shows his ignorace on the protective value of guns in his conversation with Sheriff Clarke. While the number of defensive gun uses may not be as high as the Kleck and Gertz figure (2.5 million per year) from their 1994 study, due to problems with the statistical methodology used, the body of literature shows it is certainly in the six figures. That is hardly insignificant. I don't know how many defensive gun uses there were in Milwaukee last year, but nationally there were hundreds of thousands.

    January 30, 2013 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Irene

      I agree with you. Depending on what study you read, the statistics on Defensive Gun Uses show that between 800,000 and 2,500,000 are saved by having a gun each year. And I’m sure there are many more “unreported cases” as well. Defensive Gun Uses must be given due consideration when we talk about gun-control.

      January 30, 2013 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Michael Golden

      Milwaukee Sheriff David A. Clarke was asked by Morgan how many defensive actions take place in Milwaukee County? And the answer is; The population of the county is 952,500 and the National statistic is 1.44% of the population takes defensive action every year that would be approximately 13,700 per year in Milwaukee County.

      January 30, 2013 at 10:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ros ryan

      When questioned Kleck notes that his study may have included incidents in which a homeowner merely heard noisy youths outside his house, then shouted, "Hey, I've got a gun!" and never saw any possible attacker.
      In other words it may have included imaginary incidents.

      February 1, 2013 at 5:10 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Jason

    Pierce you showed your but in this conversation! He eat yours and the mayors lunch in that discussion! Crash and burn Mr. Morgan. Way to go David A. Clarke Jr, take a stand we need more people like you!

    January 30, 2013 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Mike-Mat

    You assume that because someone owns a gun, and finds themselves in a situation of being attacked, they will absolutely have to "fire a firearm". A gun, in most cases, is a deterrent. Criminals are looking for the easy score. So they will avoid an armed citizen. Someone who takes a firearms training course and practices, can be responsible for their own safety and not rely on the police when danger is eminent. You also make the false assumption that if you shoot someone once, they die, so why would anyone need more than 1 bullet. Since you've never shot a gun, you wouldn't have any idea what it takes to hit a moving attacker in a high stress situation.

    January 30, 2013 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ichiro

      Imagine the nerve-racking pressure you’d feel, thinking “If I don’t get them all with 10 bullets, I’m dead, so are my wife and kid...” Doesn't Piers know that even a skilled shooter can miss a few times, when shooting moving objects?

      January 30, 2013 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. seth

    It was obvious that Sheriff Clarke is playing politics with public safety. Pretty disgraceful really. Just because you're disgruntled because of funding changes doesn't give you the right to endanger the public with reckless ads.

    January 30, 2013 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Nate

      I think cutting the number police endangers the public and emboldens criminals....

      January 30, 2013 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse | Reply
      • Karen

        Nate you are quite incorrect. Sheriff Clarke is not a member of the Milwaukee Police Department and has zero business making the advertisement at all. As explained by the Mayor his duties do not involve law enforcement within the city limits at all. Chief Flynn is not advocating that citizens start shooting and arming themselves and it is he, not David Clarke who is in charge of Milwaukee Police Department. David Clarke is absolutely encouraging vigilanteeism in our city which already has way to many gang members that carry guns and commit crimes or injure and kill each other or innocent people. The first thought should be to call on 911 and he is reducing faith in first responders. As a citizen of Milwaukee I hope that David Clarke's commercial will be off the air very soon.

        Here's something to consider "The most recent state Office of Justice Assistance report covers the two-year period of 2009-2010 and shows there were 106,936 violent and property crimes in the county. The Milwaukee Police Department handled 75 percent of those incidents. The sheriffs handled just 57 crimes, or less than one-fifth of one-percent."

        Despite that puny effort, the sheriff’s budget is about half the size of the Milwaukee Police Dept. budget of $237 million." http://urbanmilwaukee.com/2012/10/03/murphy%E2%80%99s-law-too-many-cops-in-milwaukee-county/

        Sheriff Clarke is a conceal carry supporter and he has the right to be – on his own time, he is using his own authority as sheriff to promote that view along with encouraging a lack of confidence in law enforcement to address crime. It is truly unprofessional and uncalled for.

        January 30, 2013 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jan

      What 'reckless" ad are you talking about? The ad encourages people to take a gun safety course. Sounds logical to me.

      January 31, 2013 at 8:29 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Karen

        Taking a gun safety course is good advice. Milwaukee does NOT need any encouragement of ordinary citizens stepping in to try to act like police officers when a crime is in progress. The average citizen, even with a gun safety course cannot compare to trained officers. Case in point, they don't even have the requisite skills to properly restrain people without killing them: http://www.jsonline.com/news/crime/student-died-after-being-restrained-in-alleged-shoplifting-bn8830n-185606331.html. If a gun was on the person of any of these people the result would have been the same. If you support this kind of thing, I only hope that you are outnumbered by people who prefer authorities like police, courts, FBI and others who are rigorously screened for psychological problems and even more rigorously trained to make split-second decisions that not only seek to capture the guilty but to protect innocent bystanders. There is a big difference between protecting yourself and tryiing to be a superhero crimestopper in our public places. There is no reason that our petty thieves should be sentenced to death unless you are advocating that our courts do that as well. If you support that heavy penalty for shoplifting your minor children will likely be in great jeopardy.

        January 31, 2013 at 10:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Jan

      What was reckless was Piers and people at MSNBC using ann edited tape to make it look like the Newtown dad was "heckled" at a hearing he was at. The man was not "heckled", despite the creative editing from the media.

      January 31, 2013 at 8:30 am | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Hilton Shoemaker

    CNN has EDITED this video clip with the sheriff. This is slapstick, knee jerk journalism with Piers Morgan the bully that has NO manners or courtesy. CNN should be ashamed to try and manipulate media by editing this in this manner. SHOW THE ENTIRE VIDEO SO PEOPLE CAN SEE WHAT AN ASS MORGAN IS AND HOW THE SHERRIFF FACTUALLY PUT THE MAYOR AND MORGAN IN THEIR PLACE.

    January 30, 2013 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ros ryan

      Hi Hilton, you know I think it's actually quite common for tv shows to be edited. Ever heard of an editor?

      February 1, 2013 at 5:32 am | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Tom

    Karen, Are you even from the Milwaukee area? Sheriff Clarke certainly has jurisdiction with in city limits and is a public safety official. He therefor has a duty to also "protect and serve". Talk to a cop and see what really is Flynns agenda . The Chief is more concerned with falsifying police reports than reducing crime. That both departments continually suffer budget cuts and a reduction of boots on the ground will never serve the citizenry adequately. All Sheriff Clarke is doing is asking RESPONSIBLE citizens to do is take a safety course to be able to protect themselves IF emergency response is not timely enough.

    January 31, 2013 at 1:51 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Karen

      Hi Tom,
      Yes I certainly am a citizen of Milwaukee. The "falsifying" of police reports was thoroughly investigated and found to be a systemic problem with data collection and processing not a conspiracy headed by Flynn. As stated repeatedly by numerous sources, when a citizen calls 911 the MPD not the Sheriff's Department responds. The Sheriff's deal with the courts, airports, highways etc. not general crime. I've seen too much gun violence first-hand already and in at least one case it was a person trying to be a vigilantee going after a few punk kids who certainly did not deserve to be chased down with a gun. The problem with Clarke's message is it may be directed at RESPONSIBLE citizens but it reaches everyone, enraged people, imbalanced people, wanna be cops on power trips, violent people etc. It is a message that RESPONSIBLE people with BRAINS don't need. It is Clarke posturing for his own self-aggrandizement peddaling fear and guns.

      January 31, 2013 at 2:06 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Jan

        I doubt if an "unbalanced" person is waiting for Sheriff Clark's permission to buy a gun or use it. How many of those many murders in Milwaukee were committed by citizens who purchased their guns legally, had a background check, and took a safety course? It's not the legal gun owner I'm concerned about. You can call 9/11 all you want, and the Sheriff didn't say not to. He merely pointed out that the police are not going to get there many times in the blink of an eye to save you.

        January 31, 2013 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
      • Karen

        Unbalanced people will hear the message and it will be twisted. It's not a matter of his granting his permission, it's a matter of his fanning the flames of people's fear and sense of righteousness to take the law into their own hands. If you haven't learned about America's horrible history with vigilante justice then it's you who reside in lala land.

        January 31, 2013 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
  7. Tim

    You folks that dont agree with the sherrif must have never been exposed to the evil side of mankind. What humans are capable of doing to other humans is almost impossible to believe unless you have first hand experiance. He gave excellent advice and Morgan should be ashamed of himself for the methods used to further his agenda to destroy the second ammendment.

    January 31, 2013 at 2:29 am | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Jan

    These are the same people who live in the la-la land of nirvana.
    They are among those who actually think ObamaCare is the be all and end all for their woes.
    They are those who think the government should stick their noses into more areas of our lives.

    January 31, 2013 at 8:36 am | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Bryan

    Maybe Piers needs to move back to England where he's from. I mean if he is SO anti-gun, why not go live in a country where guns are COMPLETELY OUTLAWED? Oh, that's right, it's because over in England and Australia, once guns were banned they had to come up with a term they never had or used before.... "HOME INVASION" You see, when you take all the ability of someone to protect themselves responsibly, petty crimes AND violent crimes rise dramatically. Look at the statistics on that Mr. Morgan. Furthermore, there was a man in England who protected himself with a firearm (after the same perpetrators attacked him in his home 2 previous times) and ended up fatally wounding one of the criminals and now he sits in prison. Why should this be right? Had the criminals not broke in and attacked this man they would not have been shot, so why blame the man that protected his own life? If you have any sensical response to that, please feel free to contact me, and be sure to tell me why it is so wrong for someone to protect themselves rather than possibly lose their own life.

    January 31, 2013 at 10:00 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ros ryan

      Hi Bryan, violent crime has decreased in UK and Australia since gun control was introduced.

      February 1, 2013 at 5:21 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • Bryan

        Hi RosRyan,
        Maybe you need to look at this article:
        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1223193/Culture-violence-Gun-crime-goes-89-decade.html

        also, before you say crime rates went down somewhere, maybe you should do a little more in depth research.

        February 1, 2013 at 9:15 am | Report abuse |
      • Ros ryan

        Hi Bryan, I get my stats from the official government sources, not from daily newspaper headlines. Do you remember when the American National Rifle Association claimed in 2000 that violent crimes had increased in Australia since the introduction of new laws, based on highly unrepresentative statistics from newspaper articles. The federal Attorney General Daryl Williams accused the NRA of falsifying government statistics and urged the NRA to "remove any reference to Australia" from its website.

        February 1, 2013 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bryan

        Read this Ros Ryan:

        http://world.time.com/2012/12/20/the-swiss-difference-a-gun-culture-that-works/

        and maybe move to Australia or GB

        February 3, 2013 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
  10. Scare The Pilgrims

    So Mr. Morgan, Mr. Mayor , what are you gonna be when you grow up ? to believe wealth is a reliable replacement for true adult maturity is a big problem in this country. big big problem. ^5 thumbs up to the Sheriff,,you got it.

    January 31, 2013 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. frank

    1) To reduce assault style rifle violence mandate that owners must keep their weapons away from minors and disturbed individuals in the home or face severe civil and criminal consequences with mandatory prison time. Let your son go to school with your AR-10, AR-15, high capacity assault styled weapon because you didn't lock it away from him then lose your savings, your home and your freedom. If you locked it up and he stole it, then you are not culpable. But you run the risk to trust him or not. This would not include handguns.

    2) To reduce handgun related violence declare the Bloods, Crips, MS13, Hells Angels, mafia, .... demonstrably violent gangs.... as TERRORISTS. Treat them like enemy combatants. Use the NDAA 2012 and extended Patriot Act against them. Sure we have too many people in prison and yet our crime rates are down – go figure. Just being in a demonstrably violent gang should make it illegal to own a gun. When you are a member of a gang you are forswearing your primary secular allegiance to the U.S.

    February 2, 2013 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Laurie

    FACT CHECK!!!!! ACCORDING TO THE "AP" – 4 HANDGUNS WERE USED IN THE SANDYHOOK SHOOTINGS NOT THE AR-57 AS PIERS KEEPS STATING OVER AND OVER AGAIN ON HIS SHOW!!!! PLEASE CHECK YOUR FACTS BEFORE YOU PRETEND TO BE A REPORTER OR A NEWS ORGANIZATION!

    February 4, 2013 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Karen

    So you are gleefullly informing anyone who will listen that it was handguns not at AK assualt rifle? So many pro-gun people seem THRILLED that four handguns conveyied death to young children.

    Seems like even more reason for concern about the motives and mental state of far too many gun owners.

    February 5, 2013 at 12:11 am | Report abuse | Reply

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