“Blood on your hands”: Sick NRA plumb new depths with call for guns in schools


After a week of silence, the National Rifle Association gave its response to the Newtown massacre today – with a call for guns, guns and more guns. Gun control? Not a word of it.

Protesters twice managed to interrupt the NRA’s Washington press conference before being bundled out by security, holding up banners reading:

“The NRA has blood on its hands. Ban assault weapons now”

Anti-NRA-protests-Blood-On-Your-Hands-banner
And:

“NRA killing our kids”

Anti-NRA-protests-NRA-killing-our-kids-banner
The Telegraph reports:

Wayne LaPierre, the NRA’s executive vice president, made clear his organisation would oppose efforts to bring in the first reform of gun controls laws in nearly two decades and instead called for a national database of the mentally unwell

The NRA, widely considered the most powerful lobby group in the US, took no questions during their first press conference since the massacre at Sandy Hook elementary school that left 20 children dead.

With The Guardian adding:

LaPierre made no concession to his critics and placed all blame for the Newtown shooting on others – including pro-gun control politicians, the media and health services that failed to apprehend mentally-ill killers. He said that the NRA would produce a plan to create “security shields” around every single school in the country, with armed guards at the entrance…

The fierce intransigence of the NRA after the Connecticut tragedy underlines the difficulty that Obama will have in pushing ahead with reforms designed to prevent lethal weapons falling into the hands of potential mass killers.

The NRA has consistently resisted any move towards tightened gun controls after gun rampages over the past 20 years. The group, which has up to 4 million members across the US, has proven to be a formidable legislative adversary, wielding huge power within Congress and spreading fear among politicians who dare to defy it.

The group went head to head with the Clinton administration in the 1990s, and actively campaigned against Obama in 2008 and in last month’s presidential election.

More guns?

As the graphic below shows, with 88.8 firearms per 100 people, the US has the highest gun ownership rate in the world. It is nearly 40 per cent higher than Yemen, which has the second highest gun ownership rate in the world, at 54.8 firearms per 100 people. And more than half (62 per cent) of those who have guns on their property have more than one.

Map 1:

Worldwide-gun-ownership-rates
International evidence shows a correlation between the percentage of households with firearms and the rate of intentional deaths per 100,000, with the USA in the top quadrant:

Gun-ownership-gun-deaths-correlation
While the map below illustrates the state-by-state statistics on the relationship between gun crime and gun ownership:

 

 

As Harvard-trained economist Professor Mark Duggan, of the University of Chicago and National Bureau of Economic Research, concludes in “More Guns, More Crime” (described by Forbes as “the single best study on this topic”):

Increases in gun ownership lead to substantial increases in the overall homicide rate. This is driven entirely by a relationship between firearms and homicides in which a gun is used, implying that the results are not driven by reverse causation or by omitted variables.

The relationship between changes in gun ownership and changes in all other crime categories is weaker and typically insignificant, suggesting that guns influence crime primarily by increasing the homicide rate.

Death, death and more death – the NRA’s Hellish vision of the future.

See also:

The corrosive, deadly grip of the gun lobby on American democracyOctober 18th, 2012

Columbine, Virginia Tech, Aurora… Once again, calls grow for gun controlJuly 21st, 2012

Calls for tighter gun control in wake of latest tragedyJune 3rd, 2010

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