The NRA banned guns at their event for Mike Pence.— Catherynne Valente (@catvalente) April 29, 2018
I just don't understand. Why does the NRA want the Vice President to put himself in danger?
Wouldn't he be safest if every single person in the room had an open carry AR-15 for which they didn't have to pass a background check?
The National Rifle Association's (NRA) belief on guns is: the more, the merrier, except for when Vice President Mike Pence is in the building and people are calling out its blatant hypocrisy.
The double standards were highlighted when they banned anyone carrying firearms before and during the time Pence will be delivering his speech at the organization’s annual meeting , the event is to hold “more than 20 acres” of firearms exhibits expected to host 80,000 members. The move was bashed by parkland students and some members of the NRA alike.
“As a result, firearms and firearm accessories, knives or weapons of any kind will be prohibited in the forum prior to and during his attendance,” the NRA said. The wavering of the organization’s pro-gun stance is nothing new. The same measures were taken when President Donald Trump was giving a speech to the NRA in Atlanta in 2017.
Ever since the brutal massacre at Stoneman Douglas Marjory High school in Parkland, Florida, parents and students have blamed the NRA for providing guns into the hands of people responsible for mass shootings.
However, the organization’s latest move has enraged the survivors and families of the victims of the shooting.
Fred Guttenberg, who lost his daughter, Jaime Guttenberg, during the Parkland school shooting, blasted the NRA for its hypocritical policies.
On so many levels, this is enlightening. According to the NRA, we should want everyone to have weapons when we are in public. But when they put on a convention, the weapons are a concern? I thought giving everyone a gun was to enhance safety. Am I missing something? https://t.co/f4wgNhJ7RI— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) April 28, 2018
Parkland student Cameron Kasky called the NRA a “parody of itself.”
The NRA has evolved into such a hilarious parody of itself. pic.twitter.com/6Pw6NTQAe6— Cameron Kasky (@cameron_kasky) April 28, 2018
David Hogg, another prominent student activist and Parkland shooting survivor, started a petition, asking Pence to cancel his appearance at the annual meeting.
Not only by NRA critics, the move has also been called out by the organization’s supporters. Commentators on an online message board for gun owners have shown their dislike for the move of banning guns for Pence’s speech.
“Obviously even Republicans and so called leaders don’t trust the ‘good guys.’ I realize it’s the VP, but still makes our whole argument look foolish,” said a commenter who self-identified as an NRA member.
“You may disagree … but in my opinion the very people that claim to protect the 2A should never host an event that requires disarming the good guys. Sad. No excuses for this … it makes us look stupid,” another one said.
“Me personally, I won’t be listening to him speak. I won’t be going anywhere that I can’t carry my firearm. It’s essentially the nation’s largest get together for gun owners and they won’t let law abiding legal gun owners carry guns because someone who’s supposedly pro 2A thinks it’s too ‘dangerous’? That’s liberal logic right there,” said another disgruntled self-identified NRA member.
However, there were some commentators at the forum that tried to defend the decision of the organization to ban firearms for the entirety of Pence’s appearance.
“Look at it this way, imagine what a prime opportunity it would be for some rabid gun hater to take a pot shot at the VP AT the NRA Annual Convention,” one commenter who self-identified as an NRA instructor said. “The campaign ads would write themselves.
Thumbnail/ Banner Credits: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado