In the aftermath of the Orlando shooting, many politicians on both sides of the isle are considering ways to limit access to guns. The Democrats are pushing hard for all-out bans. Some Republicans who have formerly defended Second Amendment rights are now considering limitations, too. But the NRA has some words of warning for Second Amendment turncoats.
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The NRA’s chief lobbyist warned lawmakers considering gun control measures in a statement issued Sunday. If they support gun-control, they “will pay a price for it.”
“We have a God-given right to defend ourselves, and firearms are an effective means of doing just that,” Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action, told ABC’s “This Week.”
“The politicians who want to divert attention away from the underlying problems that suggest that we’re somehow to blame will pay a price for it,” Cox said.
What would this price be? It sounds like an ominous threat.
Some read a physical threat of violence in Cox’s statement. Others claim the words are meant to incite violence. When asked to clarify, Jennifer Baker, a spokesperson for the NRA said Cox’s statement was “pretty plain-spoken and doesn’t really need clarification.”
“They will pay an electoral price, for that is what he said,” she said, in an effort to clarify.
Why the threats? What has the NRA so worked up? The U.S. Senate is preparing to vote regulations that would limit the ability of suspected terrorists to buy guns. While everyone, including the NRA, wants to limits actual terrorists’ abilities to buy guns, “suspected” terrorists are a different matter. In America, we believe in due-process. We defend it. And “suspects” haven’t been convicted of anything. Limiting their rights seems, to the NRA, premature.
Yet this issue is far more complicated. It isn’t really about the terrorists. It is about the lists themselves. Who is on the list, how they get there, and why–these details aren’t public. And while we see Islamic terrorism clearly, domestic terror is much murkier. How long would it be before anyone who wanted to own a gun, for any reason, might be added to a terrorist watch list?
Wayne LaPierre, the NRA’s chief executive, weighed in this past week, too.
“What law enforcement wants to do, 99% of the time, is let (the gun sale) go through. They want to watch it. They want to build a case. They want to build patterns,” LaPierre said on CBS’ Face the Nation. So an outright ban might even hurt America’s ability to catch these idiots before they act.
“It provides due process for the good people, and it gives law enforcement the ability where they can conduct these investigations and it won’t blow what they’re doing.”