Trump is the NRA's apprentice

No, America. Donald Trump is not going to be our savior on gun reform. And he is not going to deliver swift action to...

Posted: Feb 25, 2018 11:13 AM
Updated: Feb 25, 2018 11:13 AM

No, America. Donald Trump is not going to be our savior on gun reform. And he is not going to deliver swift action to keep our kids safe from mass shootings. The speech he made Friday to conservatives at the Conservative Political Action Conference made that clear.

When given the opportunity to stand in front of an audience of his supporters and call for real reforms that would have an effect, his answer was to double down on his call for more guns, including arming "well-trained, gun-adept teachers and coaches" with concealed weapons.

If this refrain sounds familiar, it's because this is a position and an approach long called for by one of Trump's top cheerleaders, the National Rifle Association. In fact, the NRA's Wayne LaPierre expressed support for it the day before at the exact same conference.

"Every day young children are being dropped off at schools that are virtually wide open soft targets for anyone bent on mass murder ...," LaPierre said. "Schools must be the most hardened target in this country, and evil must be confronted immediately with all necessary force to protect our kids."

The opponents of arming teachers with guns are none other than teachers, school administrators and law enforcement. Why? Because America's problem with gun violence is not going to be addressed by pushing through an NRA-backed call for more guns in schools.

As for the other "reform" proposals Trump put forward this week, LaPierre likely ended the week quite proud of his apprentice. While promising action and convincing even some of his skeptics that he meant it, Trump managed to call loudly for not much of anything.

So what did he "propose"?

Comprehensive background checks sure sound good, but this would only mean tweaks to a completely broken system, and that would be the ineffectual proposal the NRA supports -- not more sweeping criminal background checks of all individuals applying for gun ownership.

Bump stocks? Sure, we should ban bump stocks, as Trump has proposed. But when prominent gun control groups such as Everytown for Gun Safety basically shrug in response to this relatively small-bore proposal -- and even the NRA isn't overly exercised -- it is pretty clear not the answer.

And as for raising the age at which it is legal to buy a gun, that is a reasonable proposal and one that most people may support. But would it get to the heart of the problem -- widespread availability of guns in America? No.

The back-to-back CPAC speeches by LaPierre and Trump exposed more than just their common view on guns; it also highlighted their shared love and deep understanding of the use of fear. Of scaring people.

LaPierre told the CPAC crowd Thursday, "You should be anxious, and you should be frightened. If they seize power, if these so-called 'European socialists' take over the House and the Senate, and God forbid they get the White House again, our American freedoms could be lost and our country will be changed forever."

And the next day Trump followed LaPierre's lead, ludicrously warning that Democrats would "take away your Second Amendment," an election rallying cry the NRA has been funding for decades.

So how did Trump go from emotional host of the families of victims one day to NRA apprentice the next? The nearly $31 million the NRA contributed to his campaign and to oppose Hillary Clinton in 2016 gives a pretty clear hint as to Trump's loyalties.

And his speech at CPAC confirmed he is not about to challenge his fear-mongering mentor and the NRA.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313166

Reported Deaths: 7228
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21496257
Hinds20294414
Harrison17814309
Rankin13573278
Jackson13411246
Madison10066217
Lee9962173
Jones8364163
Forrest7649152
Lauderdale7181240
Lowndes6370145
Lamar621686
Lafayette6171118
Washington5323133
Bolivar4797132
Oktibbeha461498
Panola4561105
Pearl River4499145
Marshall4397103
Warren4380121
Pontotoc419572
Monroe4100133
Union409076
Neshoba4026176
Lincoln3950110
Hancock377786
Leflore3487125
Sunflower335790
Tate332484
Pike3301105
Scott315373
Alcorn311968
Yazoo310769
Itawamba299477
Copiah296465
Simpson294788
Coahoma294379
Tippah287768
Prentiss279560
Adams269582
Marion268880
Leake266273
Wayne262341
Grenada260386
Covington256381
George246848
Newton246061
Winston226881
Tishomingo225967
Jasper220848
Attala214173
Chickasaw207157
Holmes188673
Clay184754
Stone182033
Tallahatchie178140
Clarke177879
Calhoun170132
Yalobusha163337
Smith162234
Walthall133845
Greene130333
Lawrence128323
Montgomery126742
Noxubee126734
Perry125938
Amite122842
Carroll121728
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis106932
Tunica104826
Claiborne102230
Benton99125
Humphreys96133
Kemper95428
Franklin83623
Quitman80216
Choctaw76118
Wilkinson66930
Jefferson65428
Sharkey50317
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 530325

Reported Deaths: 10966
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson763971520
Mobile40908804
Madison34717503
Tuscaloosa25730452
Montgomery24314588
Shelby23401249
Baldwin21107307
Lee15856171
Calhoun14488314
Morgan14282279
Etowah13819353
Marshall12210223
Houston10557280
Elmore10044205
Limestone9954150
Cullman9649193
St. Clair9644242
Lauderdale9419241
DeKalb8825185
Talladega8214175
Walker7223277
Autauga6918108
Jackson6804112
Blount6651137
Colbert6292134
Coffee5506119
Dale4828111
Russell440638
Chilton4279112
Franklin425582
Covington4118118
Tallapoosa4019152
Escambia393276
Chambers3559123
Dallas3547151
Clarke350861
Marion3113100
Pike310577
Lawrence299898
Winston274072
Bibb260464
Marengo249264
Geneva249077
Pickens234160
Barbour230757
Hale222677
Butler215969
Fayette212062
Henry188744
Cherokee184445
Randolph179941
Monroe177340
Washington167039
Macon158750
Clay156156
Crenshaw152057
Cleburne148741
Lamar141934
Lowndes138653
Wilcox127030
Bullock123041
Conecuh110129
Perry107526
Coosa107128
Sumter104332
Greene92334
Choctaw60424
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