Wayne LaPierre, Vice President of the National Rifle Association, almost certainly unleashed yet another wave of intense gun control debates with a speech at the NRA’s annual convention this weekend. In it, he brought up the issue of gun rights in the context of the Boston Marathon bombing, arguing that many Boston residents probably wished they had a gun two weeks ago.
“How many Bostonians wish they had a gun two weeks ago?” he asked, according to CNN. LaPierre continued, telling members that “Frightened citizens [were] sheltered in place, with no means to defend themselves or their families” while law enforcement authorities hunted “a terrorist with bombs and guns just outside.”
In that same speech, LaPierre also criticized gun control advocates for exploiting the Newtown shooting and its victims for political gain.
“They use tragedy to try to blame us, to shame us into compromising our freedom for their political agenda,” LaPierre told members. “They want to change America, our culture and our values.”
LaPierre also said that Boston proves that politicians, laws and speeches won’t every stop a bad guy like “a good guy with a gun” can.
“Boston proves it. When brave law enforcement officers did their jobs so courageously, good guys with guns stopped terrorists with guns.”
The National Rifle Association is currently fighting efforts in Congress to expand background checks and pass other gun control measures inspired by the Newtown tragedy. The most recent incarnation of that legislation was defeated in Congress recently. LaPierre said it “got the defeat that it deserved.”
“The bill wouldn’t have prevented Newtown or Aurora,” he said. “It won’t prevent the next tragedy. None of it has anything to do with keeping our children safer in any school anywhere.”
What do you think? Are Wayne LaPierre’s comments on Boston and gun control inappropriate, or does he have a point?
[Image via: Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons]