21 December 2012

Tell the President, Congress to Stand Up to the NRA

People kill people. 

If we pass the strictest gun laws imaginable, people will still find guns and use them.

If we eradicate all guns from the planet, violent people will find other tools to carry out their violent acts.

But that doesn't mean we shouldn't enact common sense gun laws in an effort to reduce the number of gun killings.

The NRA would like you to believe that those of us who support reasonable gun restrictions are unpatriotic or that we want to repeal the Second Amendment or that we all naively believe that gun control is a panacea to end all murders or that we want to take away all your guns.

None of that is true.

The NRA spews lies in order to incite paranoia and hysteria among a radical fringe of its membership.

The NRA is a powerful lobby that pretends to represent gun owners. In reality, it represents the deadly interests of arms dealers and gun manufacturers and has been astonishingly successful at blocking regulations that would make the country safer from gun violence.

Most gun owners are unaware of the organization's extreme stances that have blocked the passage of any significant piece of gun legislation in nearly two decades.

Through lobbying, campaign spending and propaganda, the NRA has helped defeat common sense gun measures that polls show an overwhelming majority of gun owners support, including: 

  • Efforts to limit the availability to purchase military-style semi-automatic assault rifles and high capacity ammunition clips (the kind that were recently used in Aurora, CO and Newtown, CT). 
  • Efforts to restrict weapon sales to individuals on the US terrorism watch list. 
  • A United Nations Arms Trade Treaty which would have required countries exporting conventional weapons to certify that they weren't being shipped to a terrorist group or a nation under a UN arms embargo like North Korea or Iran.  
Due to a legal loophole the NRA is determined to keep in place, 40% of all guns are sold through private sellers who are not required to conduct a criminal background check. Over 80% of all gun owners (including 74% of NRA members) support criminal background checks on people buying guns.

In the past four years, a wave of measures across 37 states have made it easier to own, carry and conceal weapons.

America now has 300 million firearms, a barrage of NRA-backed gun laws, and record casualties from mass killers. 

The NRA relies on overly-simplistic rhetoric and bullet-point jargon. Guns don't kill people, they say.

That may be true, but unstable people with unfettered access to guns and an unlimited amount of ammunition kill people (thanks NRA). Guns may not kill people, but people who kill with guns kill a lot more people when they do kill people.

Reasonable, common sense gun control legislation is just one step - but a necessary first step - in addressing perhaps the greatest social issue facing our nation: the senseless deaths - through murder and accidents - of thousands of innocent people, including children, every year by gunfire.  

Did You Know?

  • The gun murder rate in the US is 20 times higher than the next 22 richest and most populace countries combined. Every one of those countries has stricter gun laws than the US.
  • Add together all the gun deaths in the 23 wealthiest countries in the world and 80% of those are American deaths. Of all the children killed by guns in those countries, 87% were American children.
  • Killings with handguns last year: 48 in Japan, 8 in Great Britain, 34 in Switzerland, 52 in Canada, 42 in Germany... and 10,728 in the US.
  • 32 Americans die from guns every day. 
  • The US loses more people to gun violence in six months than all the casualties of terrorism and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.
Two common sense gun control measures we all should be able to agree on: 
  • A ban on the manufacture, possession, transfer, and sale of assault weapons, such as AK-47s and AR-15s. These weapons of mass destruction are intended for the military and law enforcement and designed to kill as many people as quickly as possible. They have no place in the general marketplace. Over time, a ban of these weapons will decrease the numbers in circulation and make it more difficult for people with sinister intent to get their hands on them. 
  • Close loopholes to ensure that felons, people with mental illnesses and perpetrators of domestic violence are not able to buy guns at gun shows and over the Internet. 
Please join me in demanding President Obama and Congress stand up to the NRA and do the right thing: pass reasonable gun control legislation in 2013.  

See: Pro Gun Myths Fact Check

Related articles: 
Smoking Gun
An Open Letter to the NRA                                                                                                                                                                                                


Stephen Raburn said...

Today's headlines: Child dies from self-inflicted gunshot on Christmas Day… Woman, Child Shot at While Driving in Lemon Grove... The Newtown and Firefighter Shooters Used the Same Type of Gun... Cincinnati: Shots fired outside funeral for slain teen... Police: Illinois Teen Shot, Killed By Friend Playing With Gun... Amid fear of a ban, a run on firearms... Customers seek military-style rifles and high capacity magazines...

Stephen Raburn said...

Today's headlines: 7 year old shot by another child... Philly police release video of man shot in front of child, 5... Wendell teen accidentally shot and killed... Houston man charged with shooting girlfriend, teen... Gunman dead after shooting 3 cops at NJ police station... Chicago reaches 500 homicides with fatal shooting... Some in NRA push concealed-carry for Arlington teachers... Bushmasters Disappearing From Shelves After Newtown...

Stephen Raburn said...

Today's Headlines: Kindergartner Shot In Memphis Late New Years' Eve... Child Shot While Waiting for San Francisco Fireworks... 8-year-old Marlboro County, S.C. child shot, killed... 1-year-old boy shot at home... 3-year-old shot while on sofa in Lakewood home... Elkton: Girl, 10, shot in head by celebratory gunfire... Handcuffed California teen shot while in police custody... Teen Shot After Finding Discarded Gun In North County... Teen shot and killed in Queens by two masked men...

Stephen Raburn said...

Adam Lanza, NRA Member