The National Rifle Association executive vice president Wayne LaPierre, speaks during a news conference in response to the Connecticut school shooting on Friday, Dec. 21, 2012 in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
We’ve been awaiting the promised press conference today for the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre, with the organization’s promise of new proposals. And now it’s just wrapped up—with no questions allowed—with the one and only NRA idea that we need to get armed security in every school across the nation in January. Along the way, he took major shots at the media, video game makers, Hollywood and liberal politicians. (Full video here.)
Here’s my blow-by-blow as it happened: LaPierre starts by ripping America for not protecting schools with guns and armed security. Notes we protect banks, president. “We as a society leave our children ultimately defenseless and the monsters and predators of the world exploit it. That must change now.”
Someone then puts up big red sign in front of him “NRA KILLING OUR KIDS.” Then protestor shouts for sixty seconds as pulled out.
Then LaPierre hits criminals spreading like cancer across our communities—as federal gun prosecutions have decreased by 40 percent. So violent crime is increasing again. Also blames hurricanes somehow. And “another dirty truth the media seeks to conceal.” That is, a shadowy network that sows violence: Video games. And music videos. People in “corporate media” are “co-conspriators.” Instead media hit gun owners.
Then woman jumps up with big sign, “NRA Has Bloods on Its Hands.” And shouts “Ban Assault Weapons Now.” LaPierre stays calm. Then hits media for getting some facts wrong on weapons and ammo.
Then on to brave teachers unable to stop Newtown massacre though tried. “The only way to stop a monster from hurting our kids is to get personally involved…The only thing that will stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.… Would you rather have your 911 call bring good guy with gun from a mile away or a minute away?”
Says media will spin as NRA insanely calling for more guns. “Since when has a gun become a bad word? Why bad when gun used to protect our police or our president but not to protect our kids in school?” Basically calls for guns in every school. Hits the “press and political class” again—so “consumed with hatred of NRA and gun owner” that leaves school principal unarmed when tries to shield children. “No one has the right to impose that sacrifice.”
Then hits Obama for cutting some funds for school protection. Says former police, military, more could join with local schools and police to protect every school to “immediately make schools safer.” No funds but “could be deployed right now.” Calls on Congress to provide funds for armed security to be in place in every school in January. NRA has 11,000 trainers to help (for a healthy fee, one presumes). Former Sen. Asa Hutchinson to lead NRA model school shield protection program. Calls on parents to demand this.
Offers NO plans for new gun policies. Then introduces Hutchinson to describe program. MSNBC host Roberts calls it one of most bizarre presser he’s ever heard. Michael Steele comes on, says he supports NRA, but finds “disturbing” we are calling for arming schools, missed opportunity and public won’t back. Not even what rank and file NRA members want, he says. Then Beau Biden slams: Yes, improve police training but assault weapons need more restrictions.
Check out Melissa Harris-Perry's latest column, "After Newtown, Beware Fear-Drive Policymaking".