The gun lobby has a few lines they roll out after every major mass shooting. Of all of the well-known statements, perhaps the most consistently present is the call for gun violence prevention groups, politicians, and victims to “stop politicizing” gun violence. This, of course, is ridiculous. But, equally importantly, the gun lobby itself spends a huge amount of the time immediately following shootings “politicizing” gun violence. We’ve compiled a list of just a few examples of this hypocrisy:
- The time Wayne Lapierre claimed that “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” that gun free zones invite mass shootings, and that increasing gun regulations is equivalent to “dishonest thinking” in the wake of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary.
- The time NRA Board of Directors member Charles Cotton claimed that victims of the shooting at Emanuel AME would still be alive if the pastor “had expressly allowed members to carry handguns in church.” He continued by saying that “innocent people died because of [state legislator, pastor, and shooting victim Clementa C. Pinckney’s] position on a political issue.”
- The time that NRA commentator Coloin Noir told Andy Parker to not be “so emotional” in the wake of his the murder of his daughter, journalist Alison Parker, and called the reaction to the shooting a “gun control dog and pony show.”
- The time that Gun Owners of America Communications Director Erich Pratt, the son of GOA founder Larry Pratt, claimed that “gun control policies” were the real culprit behind the Charleston shooting.
- The time that Mike Vanderboegh, militiaman, gun lobbyist, and founder of the 3%ers movement, posted a Bible verse about child sacrifices on his blog in reaction to the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting.
- The time that Gun Owners of America founder Larry Pratt went on Fox News the day after the first anniversary of the Newtown shooting to argue against gun free zones and background checks, and expressed his desire to put people with “mental problems” in jail.
- And the time (this one is our favorite) that Wayne Lapierre appeared before Congress after the Columbine shooting to argue for expanded background checks.