Season Finale for Blue Bloods filled with misinformation about guns: illegal smuggling of guns, machine guns, and more

The notion that criminals are buying machine guns at gun shows and then smuggling them from Georgia up to New York City is absurd. Despite all the misleading information about guns in television shows these days, The Blue Bloods two-hour season finale (Season 11, Episodes 15 and 16, May 14, 2021) stands out as a particularly biased example.

Criminals rarely obtain their guns from gun shows. In 1991 and 1997, only 0.6% and 0.7% of criminals got guns from gun shows. The latest 2016 survey conducted during the Obama administration found that the number was still only 0.8%. In this episode, supposedly, 43% of the guns illegally transported in a shipment to New York City originated from gun shows. Marisa Ramirez (plays Detective Maria Baez) announces that she knows that these guns came from gun shows because she ran their serial numbers through BATF’s tracing site. Of course, while the show wants to demonize gun shows, the only way that information would be in the BATF’s data is if the guns went through background checks at the gun shows. The show repeatedly emphasizes that these are machine guns (you can hear the automatic weapons fire at the end of this clip). These guns are described as “heavy ordinance, battlefield type stuff” and “what the hell is all this for? World War 3.” For good measure, Detective Joe Hill warns: “people are going to die, Ty, a lot.”

If you think that enforcing laws against gun trafficking from states like Georgia is going to stop criminals from getting guns, all you have to do is look at Mexico where they don’t need to worry about guns being smuggled from different parts of the country because there is only one gun store in the entire country.

As the Crime Prevention Research Center has pointed out many, many times, television crime shows seem to think criminals are constantly using machine guns to commit crime. In real life, criminals generally use machine guns so rarely that a 2016 survey of prison inmates only broke down the numbers for uses in crime of handguns (11.2%), rifles (0.8%), and shotguns (1.1%). There are few rifles, and the survey did not even mention fully automatic weapons. A similar finding is available from the FBI UCR report where 2.6% of all murders involve rifles of any type and 0.3% of all murders involve unspecified “other guns.” There is a reason for that. Since 1934, there are only two known uses ever of a machine gun being used in a murder. And even before 1934, they were very rare. 

Law & Order: Organized Crime (Season 1, Episode 5, May 13, 2021) also had a brief segment involving automatic weapons fire, but it is so short that we will just include it in this post.

Law & Order: Organized Crime (Season 1, Episode 5, May 13, 2021)

More information is available here.

So far this season we have these shows with criminals using machine guns (this is not meant to be a complete list):

ABC’s The Rookie (Season 3): Episode 11 April 18, 2021; Episode 12 April 25, 2021; Episode 14 May 9, 2021; Episode 3, January 17, 2021

NBC’s Law & Order: Organized Crime (Season 1): Episodes 1 & 2, April 1 and 8, 2021

CBS’s Bull (Season 5): E6, January 18 2021

CBS’s FBI Most Wanted (Season 2): E4 January 19, 2021E5 January 26, 2021.

CBS’ Coyote (Season 1): E2 January 7, 2021 and E5 January 7, 2021

CBS’ SWAT (Season 4): E7 Jan 13, 2021E8 January 27, 2021E9 Feb 17 2021

CBS’s Blue Bloods (Season 11): Episode 16, May 14, 2021

CBS’ Magnum PI (Season 3): E3 Dec 11 2020Episode 7, February 5, 2021

CBS’ The FBI (Season 3): E1 Nov 17 2020E4 Jan 24, 2021

CBS’s NCIS LA (Season 12): Episode 8, January 10, 2021

NBC’s Law & Order: Organized Crime (Season 1): Episodes 1 & 2, April 1 and 8, 2021)

NBC’s The Blacklist (Season 8): Episode 1, November 13, 2020

NBC’s Chicago PD (Season 8): Episode 7, February 17, 2021

In last years’ season (2019-2020), we haven’t been keeping close track, but other recent examples include:

CBS’ SWAT (Season 3): E11 January 15, 2020; E21 May 20, 2020 

In last years’ season (2019-2020), we haven’t been keeping close track, but other recent examples include: 

CBS’ SWAT (Season 3): E11 January 15, 2020; E21 May 20, 2020

CBS’ FBI (Season 2): E12 January 14, 2020; Episode 18, March 24, 2020

Fox’s Deputy (Season 1): E1 January 2, 2020 

FBI: Most Wanted (Season 1): Episode 4, January 28, 2020; Episode 6, February 18, 2020, Episode 9, March 24, 2020 

Chicago PD (Season 7): Episode 10 January 8, 2020; Episode 16, March 4, 2020; Season 7, Episode 17, March 18, 2020; Episode 20, April 15 2020

Hawaii Five-O, Season 10, Episode 18, February 28, 2020; Episode 20, March 13, 2020; Episode 21, March 27, 2020

Magnum PI, Season 2, Episode 18, May 1, 2020

Blue Bloods, Season 10, Episode 19, May 1, 2020

The Blacklist, Season 7, Episode 18, May 8, 2020

Here is a list of shows from the 2018-19 television season that showed criminals using machine guns.

The Rookie (Season1): E2, E4, E9, E17, E20 

Magnum PI (Season 1): E1, E15 

Chicago P.D. (Season 6): E14 

Other examples of television media bias on this particular point can be found here.

The post Season Finale for Blue Bloods filled with misinformation about guns: illegal smuggling of guns, machine guns, and more appeared first on Crime Prevention Research Center.

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Author: johnrlott
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