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A documentary on gun violence hosted by Katie Couric was apparently edited to make gun activists look clueless.

In one scene of Under the Gun, Couric interviews members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, a pro-gun group.

Couric asks the group, “If there are no background checks for gun purchasers, how do you prevent felons or terrorists from purchasing a gun?”

In the film (clip featured above), the activists sit silently for several moments, apparently at a loss for an answer.

But raw video from the interview provided to the Washington Free Beacon shows that they did in fact have an immediate answer to Couric's question. Listen to it below.

The Virginia Citizens Defense League is outraged about the incident and is accusing the filmmakers of deliberately misrepresenting them.

From the Free Beacon:

The Virginia Citizens Defense League labeled the deceptively edited segment featured in the film “unbelievable and extremely unprofessional.” Philip Van Cleave, the organization’s president, said the editing was done deliberately to make it appear that league members didn’t have a response to Couric’s question.

“Katie Couric asked a key question during an interview of some members of our organization,” he said. “She then intentionally removed their answers and spliced in nine seconds of some prior video of our members sitting quietly and not responding. Viewers are left with the misunderstanding that the members had no answer to her question.”

In a statement to the Washington Post the film's producer-director Stephanie Soechtig said:

There are a wide range of views expressed in the film. My intention was to provide a pause for the viewer to have a moment to consider this important question before presenting the facts on Americans' opinions on background checks. I never intended to make anyone look bad and I apologize if anyone felt that way.

Couric said she supports Soechtig's statement on the matter and is "very proud" of the film.

Media Buzz host Howard Kurtz reacted to the report on America's Newsroom, saying there appears to be no defense for what the producers did with the footage.

Kurtz said the film made the gun owners look speechless when that was clearly not their reaction, which the original audio makes clear.

He said when he first saw the story, he was confident that Couric and the producers would apologize for the mistake, but instead they appear to be "digging in." 

"This is not a close call. ... When you do this, you are blowing a hole in the credibility of your work," said Kurtz.

Watch his analysis below.


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