The NRA isn’t exactly known for tact. They always respond to mass shootings with the same rhetoric stating “The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun, is a good guy with a gun” -Wayne La Pierr, 2013. Sen. Clementa Pinckney was the pastor of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. He was part of the state House of Representatives. He voted against a bill that would have allowed people to carry guns in schools and churches. Charles Cotton, an NRA board member, said this about Pastor Pinckney and the the shooting, as reported by the Washington Post:
“And he voted against concealed-carry. Eight of his church members who might be alive if he had expressly allowed members to carry h guns in church are dead. Innocent people died because of his position on a political issue.”
The NRA has long held romantic ideas about guns and gun ownership. They believe that everyone who is strapped possesses John Wayne, maverick skills with a firearm. These ideas are dominant in television, movies, and video games. People think that they, too, could save the day just like Vin Diesel, John Cena, or Dwayne Johnson. The reality is when you are in an active shooter situation, things don’t play out like they do in the movies. I’ve seen people get shot over $3. I watched an innocent man panic and discharge a 9 mm into a crowd of screaming, running teenagers.
The second amendment says that we have the right to bear arms and maintain a militia. It says arms, not AK47’s. There is a big distinction between the two. I’m not saying we should ban guns, or take them away from responsible citizens. There’s a problem when the Virginia Tech shooter, with a history of mental illness, can buy a semi-automatic assault weapon in a drive through, no questions asked. It’s crazy that it’s easier to own a gun than it is to own a car, what with getting and maintaining a license, and purchasing insurance. My comments will probably fall on deaf ears, but it’s time this country had a serious conversation about gun control laws.