As thousands of students marched for 17 minutes to mourn those lost in the mass murder of 17 people in Parkland, Florida on Valentines Day, the National Rifle Association (NRA) responded with more disgusting falsehoods, double talk, excuses and ideas to sell even more guns in the name of security.
The NRA is so tone deaf and full of itself it put out a tweet today to counter the national protest by students featuring the exact kind of gun that Nikolas Cruz used to murder 17 students – a gun which was once banned under President Clinton, but now is sold widely thanks to Republicans and the NRA.
— NRA (@NRA) March 14, 2018
In a video response to today’s spontaneous actions, an NRA spokesman insists again that there is no reason to pass any new laws because it would not do any good: “Passing new gun control laws won’t protect our kids because criminals willing to commit murder never obey the law.”
Let's work together to secure our schools and stop school violence. We protect our banks, our sports stadiums and our government buildings better than we protect our schools. That must change. #StopSchoolViolenceAct #DefendTheSecond #NRA pic.twitter.com/98dWIv0giM
— NRA (@NRA) March 14, 2018
That completely misses the point of what happened at Marjory Stoneman-Douglas High School when 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz opened fire with an automatic weapon, murdering 14 students and three faculty members in a matter of minutes.
Cruz was not a “criminal” in the usual sense of a repeat offender who has been in and out of jail. What he was, in fact, was a murderous white supremacist who had come to the attention of school authorities, police and even the FBI on multiple occasions – all of whom failed to act to prevent the violence.
That requires a system of background checks and gun registration at every level form gun stores to gun shows would have had an impact, and that is what the NRA refuses to admit.
The NRA and its backers say all that is needed is stricter enforcement of existing laws, but the laws to keep guns away from someone like Cruz do not currently exist.
There is no current national ban on the kind of semi-automatic weapon Cruz used, but no hunter needs.
What the NRA and the greedy gun merchants who back them will never acknowledge is that this is a problem we need to deal with as a society, as many other countries have done successfully, and not as another security problem that requires gunmen, metal detectors at every door and even more deadly weapons in places that need to be safe for children and education.
In Florida, Senator Marco Rubio and others are pushing legislation to the NRA’s bidding and pass the problem off as a security issue.
Today a bipartisan group of Senators joined @rpetty @KyleKashuv to push for passage of the #StopSchoolViolenceAct which would help identify a potential shooter before they act. It has broad support in Congress & from @WhiteHouse Lets get it done. https://t.co/tgMLYz2RyX
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) March 13, 2018
Trump, for a few minutes after the Parkland tragedy, almost sounded like he might do something on a national level – but after the NRA reminded him of who gives him those generous campaign donations, the president watered down all of his proposals.
So it is left to the children to march and the adults to vote out the rascals and vote in those who will pass strong laws to ensure sensible gun laws, and do what is really required to end unnecessary, murderous gun violence in not just schools, but all of America.