Bob Costas Defends 'Sunday Night Football' Gun Control Speech

The broadcaster, who spoke out following a murder-suicide involving a Kansas City Chiefs player, said "most reasonable people" think gun laws are insufficient.
Wesley Mann

Bob Costas is unconcerned about the sniping over his comments advocating gun control during halftime of Sunday night's Eagles-Cowboys game.

The NBC host, spurred by the murder-suicide of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher and his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins, quoted a column by sportswriter Jason Whitlock that decried the current "gun culture" in America. Critics were quick to call Costas' comments uninformed and inappropriate, and as the debate raged  Monday, Costas defended his words in an interview with The New York Times.

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"I am emphatically not backing off from anything I said," he told the newspaper. While not advocating for the repeal of the Second Amendment or the right to have guns under "reasonable circumstances," Costas said, "I think most reasonable people think we do not have sufficient controls on the availability of guns and ammunition."

To solve the problem, he called for a mix of legislation and a change in the gun culture that Whitlock decried.

Costas' remarks came under fire at Fox News, where host Megyn Kelly was especially angered.

"Look at O.J. Simpson," she said. "He went over there with a knife. He murdered his ex-wife and her friend. You know there are other weapons besides guns, and people who are determined to kill will likely kill."