New York Post columnist and radio host Frederic Dicker called the Newtown massacre a “little convenient massacre” on his show Monday to describe his contempt for New York State legislation to contain gun violence.
“That was [Governor Andrew Cuomo’s] anti-gun legislation, which he had promised not to do, but then he had a little convenient massacre that went on in Newtown, Connecticut, and all of a sudden there was an opportunity for him,” Dicker said.
Slammed by Newtown victims’ families and anti-gun violence groups, Dicker since said his sarcasm was aimed at New York’s 2013 SAFE Act gun legislation.
As an outspoken critic of the gun package, Dicker told the Albany Times Union his point “is a sarcastic reference to the governor latching on to an horrendous out of state mass killing to advance a political agenda that had nothing to do with the problem of gun-related crimes in New York.” According to his statement, “I used the word ‘massacre’ intentionally because it refers, by definition, to a horrendous large scale killing, which of course the Newtown horror was.”
Newtown families and groups may not accept this answer. “Mr. Dicker should issue an immediate on-air apology to the Newtown families who lost children and loved ones on that life changing morning last December,” executive director for New Yorkers Against Gun Violence Leah Barrett said. Until then, the group is advising a boycott of Dicker’s outlets, including the NY Post and Talk1300AM.
The cousin of a teacher murdered in Sandy Hook said, “There’s nothing ‘convenient’ about 26 lives being gunned down in an elementary school.”
Dicker is only the most recent high-profile figure to dismiss the Sandy Hook tragedy. A top National Rifle Association lobbyist told a crowd only three months after the shooting that the “Connecticut effect” would subside, leaving space for the NRA to further weaken gun laws.