National Rifle Association commentator and longtime gun rights activist Colion Noir posted a video on Monday decrying the way the media has covered the police shooting of Philando Castile.
Noir said in the video that he closely identifies with Castile, who was shot during a traffic stop last week.
"As I watched Philando Castile dying in that car, I watched myself die, and it evoked every emotion in my body," Noir said. "I didn’t want to ask questions, I didn’t care what happened before the video started recording; all I knew is that I was watching a man struggle for his life—and then die in front of his family and the entire world."
"But as a lawyer, I’ve learned to wait for all the evidence before rushing to judgment because emotions can blind you and rob you of impartiality," he continued. "However, the shit I’m seeing in the mainstream media, on Instagram, YouTube and Twitter about how the NRA doesn’t care about black gun owners because they haven’t said anything about Philando is so disingenuous, it’s sad."
"Philando Castile was a 32-year-old black man with a concealed carry license who was stopped for a broken tail light. I’m a 32-year-old black man with a concealed carry license, and I was stopped two weeks ago. The NRA doesn’t need to make a statement about Philando, because they gave him his own show. I’ve been fighting for gun rights under the NRA brand for years; y’all just got here," Noir added.
Noir said he and the NRA have received unrelenting and often contradictory criticism since he began his involvement with the gun rights group several years ago. "Before I arrived you said, ‘The NRA doesn’t have a large black membership because they don’t try to reach out to black people,’" he said. "But when the NRA makes me an NRA Commentator, socially inept morons like Russell Simmons move the goal post and say, ‘Oh, but we don’t believe you. Colion Noir, you’re just being used."
"Then I got my own show under the NRA brand, where I had countless black people, gay people, hippies, whites, Mexicans, Asians, you name it, but still you deflect again and say, ‘Now the NRA is just pandering,’ and call me a coon and Uncle Tom when I’m fighting for the same damn rights that Martin Luther King, Huey P. Newton and Malcolm X fought for."
Noir then called the national media racist in how it treat blacks and gun rights.
"If any organization acts in a racist manner towards my gun rights, it’s you, the national news media," he said. "You call the NRA racist, while in the same breath telling blacks like me that we shouldn’t own guns because we can’t be trusted to not just kill each other. Name one thing the NRA does to make it harder for black people to access their Second Amendment rights. Go ahead. Name one. You can’t."
"Because unlike you, the NRA actually fights for my rights," Noir added.
He then highlighted the cases of black gun owners the NRA has supported, including Shaneen Allen, Josephine Byrd, and Otis McDonald and criticized the media for ignoring them. "But no one knows who I’m talking about because you ignored those stories, the same way you try to ignore me now," Noir said.
Noir also chastised the media for doing a poor job of uncovering the facts around Castile’s death. "And by the way, where are the facts on Philander Castile’s death?" he asked. "Instead of calling NRA racist for not commenting on it, how about you do your job and go find the facts so we can actually have a rational, honest dialogue in this country?"
"Oh wait, that doesn’t help you sell ad space, though," he said.
He blamed the bias, in part, on the media’s need for a villain. "This is sad, man," Noir said. "You want this division. You need the hate. You need a villain."
Noir finished by complaining that the media does nothing to help inner city victims of gun crime. "Where were you over the Fourth in Chicago, when four people died and 51 were wounded?" he asked the national media. "Nowhere. Because that story was utterly predictable. Everyone in the city knew people would die that weekend. The only question was the numbers. How many innocent black people would be alive today if we applied the same level of justice to inner city hell holes that we demand in our lily-white suburbs? No one knows!"
"And that must be the way you cowards in the media want it," he said.