Liar, liar pants on fire. In regards to this paper, that seems to be the gist of a recent letter to the editor and a new Web site, but is it all just a bunch of smoke and no fire?
The letter, which ran in the May 3rd issue, was from Rik Anderson, writing in response to a story about Tennessee gun laws that appeared in the previous week's Fly-by section. Anderson asks, Why do "anti-gunners always resort to outright lying?" Then he says that he has legally purchased five guns in Memphis. He writes that each time he bought a gun, he had to produce a driver's license, fill out a form for a background check, and wait two weeks before he could pick up his purchase. He urged us to "at least 'try' to tell the truth."
The lack of requirement for background checks referred to by Preston Lauterbach, who reported the piece, is for private firearms dealers, like those at gun shows. There is a state law requiring background checks for commercial gun dealers. In addition, there is no waiting period for either private or commercial dealers, and the license referred to in the story is a gun license, not a driver's license. No matter Anderson's experience, the laws are the laws.
Says Lauterbach, "If he didn't own five guns, I'd tell him he should really get his facts straight before calling people names. As for his confusion between lies and laws, I'm quite sympathetic."
In the case of MemphisLiar.com, it's not sympathy that's needed but patience. The satirical site is clearly a poke at the Flyer. As way of explanation, the site offers this: "It's the best, and worst, political newspaper in Memphis. Readers turn to it for all the latest political news, cultural happenings, and leftist propaganda. Until now, readers have not had an online alternative to the alt weekly, to counter its bias and expose the distortions, propaganda, and outright falsehoods it propagates. That's where we come in. Hilarity awaits."
MemphisLiar.com appeared April 30th. As of press time, there has been nothing posted beyond the words cited above. We here at the Flyer are burning with anticipation. We like hilarity, and that's no lie.