The conversation was precipitated by the shooting at a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania synagogue over the weekend, which took 11 lives and injured six others. The cast of the day-time talk show reviewed the story and were left in awe of the carnage, as well as the increasing prevalence of domestic terrorism in the United States.
"What the hell is going on in this country?" Whoopi Goldberg asked.
The conversation turned to one factor many people are blaming for the attacks last week: increasingly violent rhetoric from the Trump administration. Sunny Hostin said that the president has made it "okay to other-ize people," and America needs more tolerance. That's when Behar and McCain got into it.
"Love is good, but you need laws," Behar said. "You need a lot of laws. The fact that some of these crazies all have guns is... They're not about love and understanding anymore, it's about laws. Change the laws, you change the behavior."
McCain could not let a mention of gun control go by without sticking up for the Second Amendment.
"I didn't think we were going to have a conversation about AR-15s, but I'm happy to," she said. "I wanted to talk about tolerance. I want to start with one thing, Bill Clinton says there's nothing wrong with America that can't be fixed with America and I think people on the left have to take some culpability."
McCain allowed that the Trump administration has advanced some negative agendas, but said that the left should acknowledge some of its own prominent voices as well -- taking Louis Farrakhan as an example.
"We should hold everyone accountable, not just people on the right, which I do agree Trump has a lot of things to answer for, starting with having Steve Bannon work in the White House," she said.
"If you want to have a conversation about guns, I'm happy to, but when you say things like that, AR-15s, I am a legal gun owner and gun laws don't have any impact with people who legally go and buy and use guns in a safe way," she went on. "As a gun owner and NRA member, we're demonized to such a degree."
The conversation began to lose momentum, as Behar and McCain were both clearly furious.
"Fine, you're not even looking at me," McCain said. She added, "I hate ..." before trailing off.
"I'm thinking about the 60s and 70s," Behar mused, "and how the Black Panthers and The Weathermen had a lot of guns and suddenly the NRA put in gun control. It's interesting, isn't it?"
The View airs on weekdays at 11 a.m. ET on ABC.2comments