Six ways the NRA would deal with gun violence

December 21, 2012

The National Rifle Association finally broke its silence over the Newtown school shootings on Friday. And some of the ideas proposed by NRA head Wayne LaPierre—putting armed guards in every school, for starter—have already raised eyebrows. Let's take a look at some of his main points:


Wayne Lapierre has some thoughts to share.

1) Stop promoting gun-free school zones. "Politicians pass laws for gun free school zones, they issue press releases bragging about them. They post signs advertising them. And, in doing so, they tell every insane killer in America that schools are the safest place to inflict maximum mayhem with minimum risk."

2) Stop giving so much media coverage to school shootings and other massacres. "How many more copycats are waiting in the wings for their moment of fame from a national media machine that rewards them with wall-to-wall attention and a sense of identity that they crave, while provoking others to try to make their mark. A dozen more killers, a hundred more?"

3) Consider a national database for the mentally ill: "How can we possibly even guess how many, given our nation's refusal to create an active national database of the mentally ill?"

4) More scrutiny for violent movies and video games. "And here’s another dirty little truth that the media try their best to conceal. There exists in this country, sadly, a callous, corrupt and corrupting shadow industry that sells and stows violence against its own people. Through vicious, violent video games with names like 'Bullet Storm,' 'Grand Theft Auto,' 'Mortal Combat,' and 'Splatterhouse.' ... I mean we have blood-soaked films out there, like 'American Psycho,' 'Natural Born Killers.' They’re aired like propaganda loops on Splatterdays and every single day."

5) Bring in armed guards to provide security for every school. "Now, the National Rifle Association knows there are millions of qualified and active retired police, active reserve and retired military, security professionals, certified firefighters, security professionals, rescue personnel, an extraordinary corps of patriotic, trained, qualified citizens to join with local school officials and police in devising a protection plan for every single school.

"We could deploy them to protect our kids now. We can immediately make America’s schools safer, relying on the brave men and women in America’s police forces. The budgets -- and you all know this, everyone in the country knows this -- of our local police departments are strained, and the resources are severely limited, but their dedication and courage is second to none. And, they can be deployed right now."

6) Stop debating legislation. "There’s going to be a lot of time for talk, and debate later. This is a time this is a day for decisive action. We can’t wait for the next unspeakable crime to happen before we act. We can’t lose precious time debating legislation that won’t work. We mustn’t allow politics or personal prejudice to divide us. We must act now for the sake of every child in America."

Here's the full transcript of Lapierre's press conference.

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Ezra Klein · December 21, 2012