Fox News’ Geraldo Rivera put an exclamation mark on a gun debate Tuesday with host Sean Hannity by brandishing what appeared to be a rifle or musket. (Watch the video below.)
“Give me that rifle,” Rivera said to someone off-camera on “Hannity.” Rivera, who rotates as a cohost on “The Five” on Fox News, grabbed the antique firearm and held it up.
“This is what weapons looked like,” Rivera said, drawing laughter from Hannity and another Fox News colleague, Pete Hegseth. “This is what they looked like when the Second Amendment was passed. This is what they looked like.”
“You’re going to get arrested in New York for having that,” Hannity said with a smile. “I’m just warning you right now.”
“You wanna own this? You can own this,” Rivera said. “You can load it, you can do whatever you want with it.”
“That’s very cute,” Hannity said.
Rivera, a gun owner, was illustrating that the Second Amendment didn’t cover modern firearms capable of mass killings when the amendment was ratified in 1791. And that AR-15-style rifles go far beyond self-defense.
But his showdown with Hannity and Hegseth, who bragged that he owned several AR-15s, mostly went nowhere. The two tried to shame Rivera for not appearing to know that “AR” stands for ArmaLite rifle and Hannity smugly said Rivera had never fired one.
It appeared to be an attempt to diminish Rivera’s argument that defending one’s self or home does not require the firepower of an AR-15.
Earlier, Hannity used the shootings in Monterey Park and Half Moon Bay, in which nearly 20 people died at the hands of gunmen who used semiautomatic weapons, to dubiously argue that California’s strict gun laws don’t make citizens safer.
The state has had one of the lowest rates of gun deaths in the country, according to 2020 figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and its rate of mass shooting homicides is below the national average, too, the Public Policy Institute of California reported last year.