Alec Baldwin would like you to know he takes no responsibility for the shooting on the set of the movie “Rust.”
The gun was supposed to be unloaded. He only pointed it toward Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer who was killed Oct. 21, because she asked him to. And, of course, he never would have pulled the trigger.
Baldwin’s story doesn’t add up, which is something we’ve known from the beginning. (We’ve been pointing out what the media is hiding here at The Western Journal — and you can help us in our fight by subscribing.)
All of these questionable statements came during his interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos last week. While there were a torrent of dubious claims, the one that got the most attention was that the gun fired on its own.
According to Baldwin, the script only called for cocking the gun, not pulling the trigger. “The trigger wasn’t pulled. I didn’t pull the trigger,” he said.
“I cock the gun. I go, ‘Can you see that? Can you see that? Can you see that?’” he continued. “And then I let go of the hammer of the gun, and the gun goes off. I let go of the hammer of the gun, the gun goes off.”
“So, you never pulled the trigger?” Stephanopoulos asked.
“No, no, no, no, no,” Baldwin insisted. “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them.”
EXCLUSIVE: “The trigger wasn’t pulled. I didn’t pull the trigger,” Alec Baldwin tells @GStephanopoulos in first interview since fatal shooting on set of “Rust.”
— ABC News (@ABC) December 1, 2021
Actor John Schneider doesn’t buy it.
Schneider, known for his roles in “The Dukes of Hazzard” and “Smallville,” took to social media to give a demonstration of why he doesn’t believe Baldwin’s story.
The gun simply can’t fire itself. https://t.co/6U0a5Ag3fm
— John Schneider (@John_Schneider) December 5, 2021
In the seven-minute video, Schneider looked at a single-action revolver like the one that Baldwin used on set, beginning by checking the cylinder and barrel thoroughly — which would have alerted Baldwin to the presence of a bullet.
“I understand that this is a pain in the butt,” he said, about the 1:40 mark. “But … this is what firearm safety is all about.”
Schneider also addressed the theory that Baldwin may have been “fanning” the gun. With single-action revolvers, “fanning” involves keeping one hand on the grip and trigger while using the other hand to cock the hammer repeatedly. You’ve probably seen this in westerns before.
“If I fan this, [the hammer is] going to stick there unless I have my finger on the trigger, OK?” he said.
“Now, if you have your finger on the trigger and you fan it, it will go,” Schneider added, noting several times throughout the video how impossible firing a revolver without using the trigger would be.
He added that loading the gun would have been “an intentional action.”
“There’s a lot of things we’re told to believe that don’t make a lot of sense,” Schneider said.
To be fair, some have noted the model of revolver that Baldwin was using, a replica of an antique gun, can be more likely to go off without pulling the trigger.
At The Reload, a firearms-centric news site, co-founder Steven Gutowski noted “the gun involved is more prone to firing without the trigger being pulled. And, even though it’s a modern replica of an antique design, it’s possible it did not include modern safety devices.”
Gutowski noted that “a single-action revolver with the old-style firing mechanism can fire without either the hammer being cocked or the trigger being pulled. When the hammer is down on that kind of revolver, the firing pin protrudes and, if a live round is loaded in the chamber underneath, a sharp enough jolt can cause the pin to strike the round’s primer with enough force to set it off.”
However, just because it’s possible doesn’t mean it’s probable, Gutowski said:
“None of that means Baldwin’s story is entirely accurate. It’s not clear if drawing a gun from a holster in this state would be enough to set it off. It still seems more plausible Baldwin pulled the trigger. But, the gun firing without the trigger being pulled is not as far-fetched as it sounds at first.”
Whatever the case, the details from Baldwin’s interview don’t seem to add up. There was a total vacuum of responsibility from a man who was not only the star but a producer of the movie in question.
Issues on the set — which included two prop guns going off in the days leading to the shooting and six members of the crew walking off the set due to safety concerns on the day it happened, according to the Los Angeles Times — would ordinarily set off alarm bells for any producer or actor working with firearms.
Even if Baldwin didn’t pull the trigger — an unlikely scenario — what are the odds that the malodorous story he peddled in his interview with Stephanopoulos is even remotely close to the truth? To hear the actor tell it, he bears no responsibility for a thing that happened that day.
I wasn’t there, mind you, but I get the sense — as did so many others — that this was Oscar-worthy acting delivered when it was least appropriate.
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