“The View” co-hosts accused a St. Louis, Missouri, couple of overreacting by brandishing firearms when a group of protesters trespassed on their property.
The incident occurred on Sunday, when protesters allegedly broke the fence leading to Mark and Patricia McCloskey’s property. Footage of the encounter went viral with both pointing their guns at the protesters.
“No. 1: if I were protesters, I would not appreciate having an AR-15 headed my way or a woman who seems crazed with her finger on the trigger,” co-host Joy Behar said. “I would not enjoy that at all. I don’t think any of these protesters had weapons.”
“The only other thing I wanted to say was that they claim that they are Black Lives Matter supporters. In that case, why not go out to these protesters and say ‘I appreciate that you’re protesting, I agree with you’? Acknowledge what they’re doing and … and basically sort of neutralize the possibility of violence. Instead of — she had her finger on the trigger, this woman. Even if she didn’t mean to kill somebody, she could have.”
While the couple did say it supported the “Black Lives Matter” movement, they also alleged that they grabbed their firearms after seeing two armed white protesters enter the area.
Co-host Sunny Hostin cast doubt on the couple’s explanation, asking why they would brandish weapons outside of their house rather than just call the police. “I agree with Joy in the sense that the couple’s narrative has changed a lot. At first, it was this angry mob came out down my street — I felt threatened. Now they’re saying I wasn’t threatening the peaceful protesters, but I saw two white men in the group and those two white men had weapons, but not the peaceful protest,” Hostin said.
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She added: “If someone has a — if there’s a peaceful protest and you feel threatened, I don’t know why you decide to go outside of your home and brandish a weapon. Don’t you stay inside of your home and call the police? So it just seems to me that there is quite a disconnect there, because what they did was very aggressive. There wasn’t a need to brandish a weapon in a threatening way.”
She also acknowledged that Missouri had open-carry laws, but suggested that the couple illegally threatened protesters. “What is at issue is that it would be a crime to brandish a weapon in a threatening manner. That is actually a felony. And what I saw on the video is the brandishing of a weapon in what could appear to be a threatening manner, right? And so, that is a felony.”
The two also weren’t using their firearms properly, co-host Meghan McCain, a fellow gun owner, argued. “I am for legal gun ownership that’s responsible. You’re right, this woman had her finger on the trigger the entire time and trigger control is a big thing, especially with pistols,” she said.
“You’re never supposed to put your finger on the trigger unless you’re intending to shoot and aim and hit something. The man has no muzzle control whatsoever, which means that the front part of the AR-15 he is pointing it in all directions and all places … It’s highly, highly dangerous and irresponsible. There’s a clip at one point where she’s moving her pistol around — she could have easily shot her husband in the head.”
Co-host Whoopi Goldberg questioned whether the couple needed to use firearms when the protesters were apparently moving away from their house.
“From what I’m looking at, their house is over there. Their house is to the right. The protesters seem to be going away from the house. And as we’re looking, it’s not a mob that’s in front of the house at the moment. There’s a couple of folks, but they’re on the move,” she said.