US gun rights advocates have signed a White House petition calling for British CNN host Piers Morgan to be deported for allegedly attacking the Second Amendment rights of ordinary Americans.
Just two days after the petition calling for Morgan’s deportation was posted, it had already garnered more than 28,500 signatures late on Sunday, far and beyond the 25,000 required to get a response from the White House.
The outspoken former British tabloid editor has launched something of a personal crusade for greater gun control measures in the wake of the Dec. 14 massacre at Sandy Hook elementary in Newtown, Connecticut.
On Tuesday, Morgan held an especially contentious interview with Gun Owners of America executive director Larry Pratt, appearing to become incensed and incredulous when Pratt suggested more, not fewer, weapons as the solution.
“You’re an unbelievably stupid man, aren’t you?” Morgan asked during the heated debate. “You have absolutely no coherent argument. You don’t actually give a damn about the gun murder rate in America.”
Following the interview, a Texas journalist posted a petition on the White House Web site alleging Morgan “is engaged in a hostile attack against the US Constitution by targeting the Second Amendment.”
“We demand that Mr Morgan be deported immediately for his effort to undermine the Bill of Rights and for exploiting his position as a national network television host to stage attacks against the rights of American citizens,” it says.
Many Americans follow a literal interpretation of the Second Amendment, which enshrines the “right to bear arms” in the US Constitution.
Morgan insists the US can outlaw military-style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines without infringing on people’s constitutional rights and says he has no quarrel with the Second Amendment.
A defiant Morgan refused to back down from his position.
“Ironic US gun rights campaign to deport me for ‘attacking 2nd Amendment rights’ — is my opinion not protected under 1st Amendment rights?” he posted on his Twitter feed on Saturday, referring to freedom of speech provisions.