News

Calm Down. Not Everything Is Politically Motivated

Discovery Channel cancels American Guns.

“Discovery needs to bring this show back. People die in cars every day but they have never banned a show about cars!!” Comments like these litter Discovery Channel’s American Guns Facebook page. Three days after the horrific school shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, Fox News reported Discovery Channel cancelled the television show American Guns. Fox News wrote that Discovery buckled over the pressure the channel was getting from Facebook comments and Tweets demanding them to cancel gun-related programming. However, in the same report, Fox News says that a Discovery Channel representative did not say the Newtown school shooting had anything to do with the decision to cancel the show. That same day and in the following days, the Internet exploded with reports that all our favorite gun-related shows weren’t returning due to the shootings. On the Sons of Guns Facebook page, there are plenty of comments that reference rumors to the show’s cancellation. However, Discovery Channel has not cancelled Sons of Guns. According to Will Hayden’s—owner of Red Jacket Firearms where Sons of Guns is filmed—personal Facebook page, as of early December, the cameras are still rolling at the Louisiana gun shop.

Colby Donaldson tweets “Not to fear… "Top Shot" is coming back. Just finished filming Season 5. Stand by for air dates...”
Colby Donaldson tweets “Not to fear… “Top Shot” is coming back. Just finished filming Season 5. Stand by for air dates…”

Rumors that History Channel cancelled Top Shot started to circulate, but the show’s host, Colby Donaldson tweeted that Top Shot finished filming its fifth season; there just aren’t dates yet when it will air. There has been no word from Colby or History Channel that the show isn’t returning. Top Shot has had to comment repeatedly on their official Facebook page, “We’ll update this page with information on the upcoming season of Top Shot as soon as that information becomes available.” Then reports that Ted Nugent’s Discovery Channel television show, Gun Country will also not return to the channel. People speculated it was a politically motivated decision due to the Newton shooting. However, in September, months before the shooting, Discovery made a statement the Ted Nugent show was a one-hour special and they never planned it as a regular television show.

From what I have read on the Internet, there are a lot of people who have been quick to say the cancellations are politically motivated. There have been a lot of knee-jerk reactions and assumptions to recent events, while in fact only one television channel has cited the Newton shootings for cancellations of gun-related television shows. NBC Sports Network decided to pull all shows with gun-related content, including 3-Gun Nation and GunTalk. Our contact at 3-Gun Nation said they received a note saying there is an “Indefinite moratorium on all firearm related programming.” Neither Discovery Channel nor History Channel has said anything publicly to lead us to believe they are cancelling certain shows in reaction to the school shooting. Before we decide to boycott and hate on these channels because they are “anti-Second Amendment,” we must remember how television works.

The industry measures TV shows in how successful they are in bringing advertising dollars. If a TV show is rated high—meaning a lot of people are watching—the more advertising dollars the show brings in. This means the network airing the show gets more money. Therefore, they keep shows with higher ratings and dump shows that don’t make the big bucks. Sons of Guns has been one of Discovery Channel’s highest-rated shows. In fact, the season premiere of Sons of Guns was the highest-rated cable show the night it aired. American Guns has failed to reach those same rating numbers. Why would Discovery Channel waste money producing a program that didn’t bring in any money?

Discovery Channel cancels American Guns.
Discovery Channel cancels American Guns.

If we look at NBC Sports and the reasoning behind their decision, 3-Gun Nation is small potatoes to a channel that has the rights to the NFL. During football season, NFL games get some of the highest ratings on television.

Was the news about American Guns being cancelled simply bad timing for the network? I have no idea. I have yet to find any official statement from Discovery Channel. For all we know Discovery made the decision to cancel American Guns months ago.

In light of recent events and the pro-gun crowd’s reaction has reminded me to question everything I read on the Internet. How quickly people have been to “believe” the media hype, make assumptions and start rumors. Word has spread quickly, albeit how correct or incorrect the information is. Remember this is the same media that calls every gun an AK-47 and has demonized our beloved AR-15. Don’t jump on the assumption bandwagon. Question everything you read and search out the facts. Not everyone is trying to take away your rights to own a gun. Until Discovery Channel makes a public statement saying they are against gun ownership, I will keep watching. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, “you know exactly what assuming does—right?”

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (12)

  1. I never did like Will Hayden on “Sons of Guns”. I thought there was too much impractical crap going on. I liked “American guns” and wish they would bring it back. But, my favorite was “Top Gun”. There is no reason not to bring that show back. It is disgusting that the channel gave into dissenters. What a lack of guts.

  2. Seems Discovery channel is the worst offender for canceling these shows…my solution is that I will cancel Discovery…..it will no longer be viewed in my home until they remove their collective heads from their butts!

  3. After reading, or I should say attempting to read some of the comments left by the above fans and others of TOP SHOT, I can tell you in no uncertain terms that my head hurts. I am not ashamed to have enjoyed watching, been a fan of, and considered trying out for TOP SHOT. I sometimes forget there are no standards and therein lies the problem. I am ashamed that certain checks are not in place to keep crack-pots from making myself, and other “deserving people” from having to pay for their misdeeds. I do believe a law should be past that stipulates a man, woman, or child should have to have a GPA of 3.0 (that’s a ‘B’ average) and pass a hunter-safety course to own a gun. This should be a manditory class if not completed by 8th grade before entering High-School. There should be some sort of record of this listed right on your driving license.

    While we’re at it, a nother law that stipulates you shoud at least graduate 6th grade to post a comment on-line would also be great. I own quite a few guns of many makes and calibers. I do not FEED any of them. I am in favor of a petition to keep guns in the hands of the educated and trained. In fact, If every “QUALIFIED” person carried a gun, the out-laws would be on the outs.

  4. The Three Gun Nation and Gun Talk were actually great shows for gun enthusiasts. While I own many guns and shoot often I didn’t watch Sons of Guns, etc. I would love to see more shows about the care and feeding of firearms, new products, maintenance and techniques.

  5. most of listen to the media because thats the only way to gather info,the media knows it,the government knows it too,dont under estimate the gov involvement in the media as another scare tactic for noninvasive control of the people,i also know that these vendors are opting out because they have already sold out of product and the demand is so high suppliers cannot keep up,believe that if they had it they would be there to sell it,thats there job and income,gun dealers are ”pro gun”i know dealers that are saying, dont buy now out of fear,wait and the prices will come down again and supply will be restored,PLEASE GO TO whitehousedotgov.AND SIGN THE PETITIONS TO KEEP OUR GUN RIGHTS!!!!!!!

  6. History advertised Top Shot on their New Year spots – saw it watching New Years Day episodes of some show.

    TV’s a business, and you’re the product. Enough faces to sell to advertisers, and the show hits the air. Not enough faces to sell, it gets canned. A simple problem of money.

    The other fun thing about shows: internal programming always wins over third-party produced shows, because there’s less mouths to feed. If NBC cancels gun shows and replaces them with crews they have to keep under contract anyway for the Olympics, football, etc., then the show is cheaper to produce and they make more money on the same advertising costs.

  7. Aw, come on; give the conservatives a break. Libs “jump to conclusions” ALL the time and you don’t see anyone telling them to check their facts do you? Point is “fact” they do everything they can to avoid the facts/truth because it rarely plays to their hand. Let’s face it, we are a knee jerk society. Why, because when we wanted to believe “this” (whatever “this” might be) can’t happen in America we see over and over again that it can. So, we, as a people, trust hardly anyone, at least I know this is true in my case. We certainly don’t trust the media. So, it is very easy for a concerned citizen to believe the falsehoods that flood the Internet. Should we check the facts, sure. However, on occasion I need some stimulus to get my blood boiling and when I find out I got all excited for no reason, I feel better. Unfortunately, the times my blood boils for no good reason is diminishing exponentially as each day passes. So, again, give us poor ol’ folks out here in the trenches a break. We promise we will do better in the future. That is, assuming we have a future!

  8. So it’s…”Don’t jump to conclusions about these companies!” Sounds about right coming from a company that initially stopped selling guns and then started charging people $60+ for AR magazines right after the shooting. Let’s not jump to any conclusions about that, either.

    Shows featuring responsible use of firearms get cancelled nearly immediately after a mass shooting and you have some idea it might not have been connected? Guess I don’t believe in coincidence THAT much. Did shows which feature guns in a violent manner get removed from the air? Haven’t seen any reports of it.

  9. CTD is getting a lot of bashing online over a perception that y’all stopped online sales as a knee-jerk reaction to the Newtown incident. I believe that it was because you’re overwhelmed with volume, but y’all might want to make a little clearer and stronger statement to that effect.

  10. I beg to differ not with the entire content of the article, but perhaps its overall theme of alleged “exaggeration” or taking the reality of the situation out of context…I enjoyed the NBC Gun related Shows and suggest that the lawful gun owners of America voice their vociferous objections to GE/NBC as an affront, nothing more nothing less. It’s time IMO that we stop underestimating the absolute discrimination the we are being subjected to (in my view it’s no different than what the Blacks were subjected to many many years ago)! While we are at it, contact the major studios/actors/directors etc. in Hollywood and call them out on their absolute hypocrisy of promoting gratuitous violence on the big-screen (TV as well) while advocating stringent gun control against the very people of which they ask patronize their shoes…?

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