Let's cut right to the punchline:  No, pro-gun rights advocates did not heckle the grieving father of a child killed at Sandy Hook.

In case you haven't been hanging out in the fever swamps of the left, you might missed how the left is quite literally a-twitter with the story that, if true, would make gun advocates look insensitive and churlish.  Alas, it is a fabrication. And an especially nasty one at that.

Via Allahpundit:

It has everything a fair-and-balanced gun-control advocate/reporter could want: An eminently sympathetic victim calmly making the case for more regulations while the ogres known as “gun-rights supporters” try to silence him by shouting him down. It’s a passion play, the supreme manifestation of what Obama was trying to achieve by having kids onstage when he signed his executive memoranda on gun control a few weeks ago. If you oppose new gun regs then you’re basically in favor of murdering children. Heckling the father of a boy killed in Newtown is simply the logical conclusion of that impulse.

Except that’s not what happened. 

MSNBC is propping up its story with a blatantly edited video. In fact, Heslin was not heckled. Gun rights advocates in the audience indeed voiced their support for the Second Amendment — after he asked why anyone would need “assault-style weapons or high-capacity clips.” You’d never know based on the MSNBC version, which completely cut out the footage of Heslin’s question.

Fortunately, Twitchy has obtained the full, unedited video, which you can view for yourself below (relevant portion starts at the 15-minute mark):


“I ask if there’s anybody in this room that can give me one reason or challenge this question … why anybody in this room needs to have one of these assault-style weapons or military weapons or high-capacity clips. [Pause, waiting for response.] Not one person can answer that question.”

Audience members: ”[Unintelligible] Second Amendment shall not be infringed”

Public official: “Please no comments while Mr. Heslin is speaking. Or we’ll clear the room. Mr. Heslin please continue.”

Heslin waited for a response. And when he got that response, it wasn’t Heslin who registered outrage — it was the media.

Let’s be clear: this wasn’t about having compassion for a man who tragically lost his son; this was strictly about pushing a political agenda. Out of more than 17 minutes of footage, the kneejerk media focused exclusively on the non-existent “heckling.” Not on Heslin’s plea for a change in gun control policy. Not on his sorrow over never being able to spend another moment with his beloved son and “best friend.” To the media, this was nothing more than a chance to exploit one man’s raw emotions in order to gin up outrage.

And it’s utterly despicable.