WASHINGTON – An unwavering National Rifle Association said Sunday that not a single new gun regulation would make children safer, that “a media machine” relishes blaming the gun industry for each new attack like the one that occurred at a Connecticut elementary school, and that a White House task force on gun violence may try to undermine the Second Amendment.
“Look, a gun is a tool. The problem is the criminal,” said Wayne LaPierre, the CEO of the nation’s largest gun-rights lobby, in a nationally broadcast television interview.
LaPierre hardly backed down from his comments Friday, when the NRA broke its weeklong silence on the shooting rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.
LaPierre’s assertion that guns and police officers in all schools are what will stop the next killer drew widespread scorn, and even some NRA supporters in Congress are publicly disagreeing with the proposal. Rep. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., called it “the most revolting, tone-deaf statement I’ve ever seen.”
LaPierre told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that only those armed guards and police would make kids safe.
“If it’s crazy to call for putting police and armed security in our schools to protect our children, then call me crazy,” LaPierre said. “I think the American people think it’s crazy not to do it.”
He asked Congress for money to put a police officer in every school. He also said the NRA would coordinate a national effort to put former military and police officers in schools as volunteer guards.
The NRA leader dismissed efforts to revive the assault weapons ban as a “phony piece of legislation” that is built on lies. He made clear it was highly unlikely that the NRA could support any new gun regulations.
“You want one more law on top of 20,000 laws, when most of the federal gun laws we don’t even enforce?” he said.