Rapper Ice-T on the Failures of Gun Control: 'Guns Don't Kill, A Cold Heart Kills'


Credit: Wikimedia Commons

In the wake of the 2012 mass shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, the pioneering gangster rapper, thrash metal frontman, and Law & Order: SVU television star Ice-T came out swinging against gun control and in defense of the Second Amendment. "I'll give up my gun when everybody else does," Ice-T told a British interviewer. "It's legal in the United States, it's part of our Constitution." What's more, "The right to bear arms is because that's the last form of defense against tyranny. Not to hunt. It's to protect yourself from the police."

Ice-T is back in music mode these days, with a new record out called Manslaughter that he recorded with his metal band Body Count. Because the first single off that record is titled "Talk Shit, Get Shot" (watch the NSFW video here), it was perhaps inevitable that the subject of gun control would once again come up when the artist spoke to the press. And as Ice-T made clear to the folks at, his stance on the Second Amendment remains the same.

"It's not guns," he declared in response to a question about what causes school shootings and other widely publicized gun crimes. "We used to say when I grew up, 'Guns don't kill, a cold heart kills.'" The real question we should be asking ourselves, he said, is "what makes these kids hearts grow cold and decide this is an answer?"

For more on Ice-T's support for the Second Amendment, see here.

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  1. OT: I’m sure he passed the background checks.…..3218.story

    1. I was watching The First 48 last night and the cops were arresting a dude for a home invasion that resulted in a murder. The arrestee said “But I’m supposed to report for boot camp in a couple weeks…”.

      That’s why we need guns.

    2. “after receiving a complaint claiming that Kopacz, while on duty and in full uniform on July 4, had gone door-to-door in a residential neighborhood soliciting prescription narcotics,”

      So I guess that’s how he likes to celebrate the 4th.

  2. …the pioneering gangster rapper, thrash metal frontman, and Law & Order: SVU television star

    One of these is not like the others.

    1. All three occupations consist of posing.

    2. LnO:SVU is offensive and unbelievable?

  3. Good for him. More people need to make ti clear that gun rights in teh 2nd amendment aren’t about hunting or sport shooting. It’s about having military small arms in the hands of civilian citizens.

    1. man u betta shut yo ass up.

      1. whoops, that was meant for sammich above. fckin skwerlz.

        1. Mum’s the word.

          *zips invisible zipper over mouth*

    2. civilians are supposed to be the little people.

      1. I mean civilians in the real sense of not actively serving in the military.

    3. correction, military arms. Back when the second amendment was written people were allowed to possess anything the military had.

      And for people who say that those were different days and weapons weren’t as dangerous back then, remember that the Tsarnaevs used the same black powder as back then.

  4. “The right to bear arms is because that’s the last form of defense against tyranny. Not to hunt. It’s to protect yourself from the police.”

    I wonder if the British interviewer had any idea what this meant.

    1. Their police are better because most of them don’t carry guns. I’m actually half serious about them being “better”. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that dogs-being-shot-by-cops deaths in the UK are lower than here.

      1. True. It’s faintly ridiculous for statists to call gun owners “gun nuts” or “paranoids” when they insist on putting every podunk cop in a battlemech and making sure that the every TLA from EPA to the FDA to the Department of Education has its own little paramilitary force. Instead of talking about the rise of anti-government militias, we should be talking about the rise of government militias.

        1. TO be fair, a lot of the people who want the cops to be armed to the teeth are also people who might be described as “gun nuts” by some. There are plenty of statists who don’t want to end private gun ownership.

      2. I think they have much less of a “civilians vs cops” mentality. I was in London in 2002, and, walking down into a subway entrance, there were two of them standing there in their classic helmets right below a sign for the subway station. I asked if I could grab a quick picture. One of them actually said “it’s your vacation, how about I take a picture of you with Constable Jones?” I was surprised, but he actually took the camera, took the picture, and handed it back to me. All of this without a billy club crashing into my skull.

        They obviously need more training.

        1. Obviously. He clearly doesn’t understand that a camera is a grave danger to a cop’s authority and he should have confiscated it and arrested you for resisting arrest, after he stomped you a little.

        2. All of this without a billy club crashing into my skull.

          I’m pretty sure you can ask an American cop to do the same thing and not have the tar beat out of you.

          British cops aren’t any better than American cops when it comes to application of force, they just don’t kill as many people because fewer of them have guns. Your perception of British and American cops are largely colored by the daily nutpunches posted here. Racial minorities (particularly blacks) have the same distrust of cops in Britain that many of them do here, and for many of the same reasons.

          I strongly suspect that most of the people here if they were being honest would state that most of their interactions with the police (in America) have been neutral to positive.

          1. I suppose that depends on where the bar for neutral is set.

            1. Neutral to negative. You haven’t done CPR on a patient in his home while the cops are walking around stealing anything valuable.

          2. Most of my interactions with police are with people I know personally, so that is mostly positive. I do my best to avoid any other kind of interaction with police.

          3. Two really bad, two bad shading to ridiculous, three or so assholes, a couple of neutrals.

            Now that I’m an old white guy, they leave me alone. I’m not really counting that as positive.

          4. Mostly assholes in my experience. In fact, there were several times that I would have thought they were racially profiling me if I was a young man of color.

          5. 66% of my interactions with cops have been negative.

      3. True, but I’ll take a mountain of dead dogs over a single “man convicted of defending himself in his own home” or “man convicted of having functional weapon” any day.

        I will cede ground on the fact that they probably flashbang fewer people to (near) death in the UK.

        1. Or “Bomb Squad Called Over .22 Round.”


      4. I’m sure they have plenty of asshole police there as well, but they do seem to do pretty well and maintaining a certain professionalism among their police. I think that the training is more rigorous and the procedures more strictly enforced.

        1. From Wikipedia regarding British Police:

          Police officers hold office and are not employees.[5] Each officer is an independent legal official and not an “agent of the police force, police authority or government.”[6] This allows the police their unique status and notionally provides the citizens of the UK a protection from any government that might wish unlawfully to use the police as an instrument against them.


          1. The laws have changed since I lived Scotland, both as a us sailor and as a civilian, but at the time to get a shotgun permit I had to have the local police attest and sign that I was of good character. I lived in a small village with one cop. The cop’s wife used to come to the local kid’s playgroup covered in bruises. Yet, this wife beating mo fo had to attest to my character.

            1. Government in a nutshell. The mostly immoral and incompetent ruling over the mostly moral and competent.

      5. While stationed at the Holy Loch, a us sub base 40 miles or so from Glasgow Scotland, I did a six month TDY on shore patrol. One of my jobs was to pickup sailors and marines that the local police had locked up the night before. More than once I was told by the sailor or jarhead that Strathclyde’s finest had beaten the sh!t out of them while locked in the cell. One of my moral low points of my life was not reporting what I was told. I figured that senior us officers knew it occurred, but lived with it as a price to have a forward base.

    2. “This is why we are citizens and you are subjects.”

  5. ZOMGZ – Bodycount has a new album?!?!?!? SQUEEEEEE! (many early 90’s memories of the heavy metal bar in Alanya Turkey…)

  6. Catchy tune.

    1. Another catchy tune. Dag Nasty: Minority of One.

      Look back on what they told you

      and see what truth can’t hide

      the government controls you and brother that’s not just a line

      but don’t trust them to tell you what is right

      no one can tell you how to live your fucking life

      question priorities

      don’t trust the majority

      question priorities

      don’t trust the majority

      even when you’re a minority of one

      now some will try to dictate and tell you what to say

      they say that they control you but don’t give yourself away

      but don’t trust them to tell you what to say

      burn free and bright and walk your path today

      question priorities

      don’t trust the majority

      question priorities

      don’t trust the majority

      even when you’re a minority of one

      1. Wow, that’s excellent. I haven’t heard Dag Nasty in years, and I don’t think I’ve ever heard that album.

        1. It’s from 1994. But it has the original Can I Say lineup.

    2. “Fuck with me, you catch a 223” is a pretty good line. And he gets style points for doing a driveby with a Thompson with a drum, too.

    1. Which, now that I think about it, means pretty much the exact opposite of “just sayin’, bro.”

      I love this language. I really do.

  7. Guns don’t kill, a cold heart kills.

    Well, a cold heart or a pair of police-issue trousers with a warm moist crotch. They seem to kill a lot, too.

  8. SO what, he’ll still vote for the gun grabbers

    1. It doesn’t hurt to have others of different political stripes (assuming he is – I don’t actually know) support some little bit of liberty. Democrats already struggle passing gun control in many areas because their entire base isn’t always enthusiastically for it.

    2. Will he? Or are you just assuming based on the color of his skin? I have no idea what his political leanings are, other than his occasional 2nd amendment comments. He wouldn’t be the first LA rapper to defy people’s expectations like that. I seem to recall Eazy-E was a registered Republican.

      1. “Bitch, I voted for Gary Johnson!”

  9. “”We used to say when I grew up, ‘Guns don’t kill, a cold heart kills.'” “

    No, Tracy, you didn’t used to say that growing up. You bit that from Full Metal Jacket

    “The deadliest weapon in the world is a Marine and his rifle. It is your killer instinct which must be harnessed if you expect to survive in combat. Your rifle is only a tool. It is a hard heart that kills. If your killer instincts are not clean and strong, you will hesitate at the moment of truth. You will not kill. You will become dead Marines. And then you will be in a world of shit. Because Marines are not allowed to die without permission! Do you maggots understand?”

    Although i must give Ice-T credit = the very first rap song i actually learned all the words to was ‘Colors‘.

    1. No, Tracy, you didn’t used to say that growing up.

      Couldn’t it be both?

      1. Meh.

        It seems a tad melodramatic even for Crenshaw High School. He was originally from pretty upper-middle-class neighborhoods. Which is kind of unsurprisingly common among 80s ‘gangster’ rappers.

        but sure. I’m sure it could have been as colloquially-popular a phrase as “wilding”.

    2. I have “Colors” on DVD. It may be time for another viewing.

      1. As a kid i thought Dennis Hopper really stood out as a uniquely talented guy.

        I thought sean penn was a prick. (then again, the characters he played were often douchebags. Coincidence?)

        1. the characters he played were often douchebags

          So you’re saying he really wasn’t acting?

  10. You know what else kills?

    Reason’s animated GIFs. They murder 10,000 times a day. And they have no remorse.

  11. I became an Ice-T fan a long time ago when I found out what a smart and super-cool guy he is. His music….not so much.

    I wish more in the entertainment industry had his brains and balls.

    1. His wife is actually pretty smart too. As a woman who looks like a stripper, you don’t expect anything intelligent to come out of her mouth, and then she says some really smart things. It’s quite surprising.

      1. That is surprising. Plus I was hoping to see her shake her trampy booty on that video.

  12. Ice T was one of the few with the courage to say that people aren’t buying guns because of criminals but because they fear the thought of an out of control government. Plus he gets props for the song Cop Killer from Body Count.

  13. Uh oh. Can a return of Limp Bizkit be far behind?

    1. I thought the Nickelback guy had taken over Fred Durst’s deal with Satan because Fred couldn’t swallow quite as much.

      1. Fred tagged Britney Spears in her prime, and for that I will forever hate him.

        1. I thought that was Christina Aguilara? Not that there was much of a difference…

  14. the pioneering gangster rapper, thrash metal frontman, and Law & Order: SVU television star Ice-T

    You forgot Tank Girl’s mutant kangaroo-man sex toy.

  15. BODY COUNT – Institutionalized 2014
    ohhahahaha.. I gotta get this album

  16. Another rapper who is firmly and intelligently anti-politician (although IIRC hasn’t made the leap to recognizing the size of the governement the root of the problem.)

  17. “The real question we should be asking ourselves, he said, is “what makes these kids hearts grow cold and decide this is an answer?”

    Unbelievably shitty parenting. I remember a gangster disciple family across the street. They taught their children to hate whitey while they were still in the crib. When they moved in, I went over to their house (they were all out in the yard) and welcomed them to the neighborhood. Their response was to just stare at me blankly. Of course the kids pick up on that.

    I recall watching their six-year-old zapping his three-year-old brother with a stun-gun in the front yard, while their big, fat whale of a grandmother sat on the front steps smoking cigarettes and just watching it all happen.

    Piss poor parenting with no regard for their children’s future.

  18. Guns don’t kill, a cold heart kills.

    I thought it was hard heart that kills, not a cold one:

    “It is a hard heart that kills. If your killer instincts are not clean and strong you will hesitate at the moment of truth. You will not kill. You will become dead marines and then you will be in a world of shit because marines are not allowed to die without permission. Do you maggots understand?”

    1. too late

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