Mike Pence is headed to Dallas on May 4 to speak at the National Rifle Association’s leadership forum.
But — there’s a catch!
Attendees, um… *drops voice to a whisper *… won’t be allowed to bring their guns to the event.
As the NRA website informs attendees:
“Due to the attendance of the Vice President of the United States, the U.S. Secret Service will be responsible for event security at the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum. As a result, firearms and firearm accessories, knives, or weapons of any kind will be prohibited in the forum prior to and during his attendance.”
But doesn’t that contradict the NRA’s theory that more guns in public spaces will keep everyone safer?
The irony wasn’t lost on many. One of those pointing out the group’s contradiction was Stoneman Douglas student Cameron Kasky.
The Florida teen has been one of the more outspoken advocates calling for gun law reform in the wake of the mass shooting at his school in February, speaking at the March for Our Lives rally and using his large social media platform to promote change.
Kasky shared a screengrab of the NRA’s policy on Twitter, noting the near-comedic level of hypocrisy: “The NRA has evolved into such a hilarious parody of itself.”
His post clearly struck a chord with many followers, amassing over 11,000 retweets and almost 32,000 likes as of this writing.
Fellow Stoneman Douglas classmate Matt Deitsch chimed in, mocking the NRA’s hypocrisy in Kasky’s replies.
“You’re telling me to make the V.P. safe there aren’t any weapons around, but when it comes to children they want guns everywhere?” Deitsch wrote, referring to the NRA’s push to get more guns in schools.
Wait wait wait wait wait wait you’re telling me to make the VP safe there aren’t any weapons around but when it comes to children they want guns everywhere? Can someone explain this to me? Because it sounds like the NRA wants to protect people who help them sell guns, not kids.
— Matt Deitsch (@MattxRed) April 28, 2018
Some pointed out it was the Secret Service’s mandate to prohibit firearms at the event — not the NRA’s. But even then: The fact the NRA was “yielding” to the Secret Service gave off a bad look, according to many Second Amendment supporters.
“Obviously even Republicans and so-called leaders don’t trust the ‘good guys,’” someone wrote on a message board for gun owners, The Washington Post spotted. “I realize it’s the VP, but still makes our whole argument look foolish.”
“In my opinion, the very people that claim to protect the [Second Amendment] should never host an event that requires disarming the good guys,” the post continued. “Sad. No excuses for this… it makes us look stupid.”
The problem isn’t that the NRA is bowing to pressure from the Secret Service.
It’s that the entire notion that a “good guy with a gun” makes everyone safer is a fallacy propped up by fear-mongering.
It’s an idea that’s certainly not backed by hard data. And, in fact, research suggests just the opposite is true: The U.S. has many more guns than the rest of the developed world, looser gun control laws — and the rates of gun violence to show for it.
If only the NRA cared about everyday Americans’ safety as much as it does the vice president’s.