Piers Morgan bowed out of CNN Friday night by delivering one final message to the American public about his controversial views on guns.
"And also I want to thank you all for watching, even those who implacably disagreed with me, or just found my funny accent annoying," he said. "Regular viewers will know that the issue of gun control has been a consistent and often very controversial part of this show. And I want to say something more about that before I bow out."
"The vast majority of Americans I met are decent, hardworking, thoroughly dependable people. As my brother, a British army colonel says, you always want an American next to you in the trench when the going gets tough," Morgan continued.
"But that's where I think guns belong, on a military battlefield, in the hands of highly trained men and women, fighting for democracy and freedom, not in the hands of civilians," he contended.
[sharequote align="center"]"But that's where I think guns belong, on a military battlefield...not in the hands of civilians."[/sharequote]
Morgan argued that "gun violence is a disease that now infects every aspect of American life" and pleaded for activists to fight for law changes.
"Now, I assumed that after 70 people were shot in a movie theater, and then just a few months later, 20 first-graders were murdered with an assault rifle in an elementary school, that the absurd gun laws in this country would change, but nothing has happened," he said. "The gun lobby in America, led by the NRA, has bullied this nation's politicians into cowardly, supine silence. "
"This is a shameful situation that frankly has made me very angry," Morgan continued. "So angry in fact that some people are criticizing me for being too loud, opinionated, even rude when I debated the issue of guns."
Refusing to apologize, the controversial host insisted that "more guns doesn't mean less crime as the NRA repeatedly tries to tell you." Instead, "it means more gun violence" and "more death," Morgan said.
"I am so pro-American, I want more of you to stay alive," he said. "But I've made my point. I've given it a tremendous whack. Now it's down to you. It is your country. These are your gun laws. And the senseless slaughter will only end when enough Americans stand together and cry, enough."
"I look forward to that day. I also look forward to seeing you all again soon. Thank you. And God bless America. And while I'm at it, God bless Great Britain too. Good night," Morgan concluded, signing off CNN for his final time.
He then sent out this tweet, following the show:
Follow Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) on Twitter