NEWTOWN, Conn. (CBSNewYork) — The most powerful gun lobby in the nation, the National Rifle Association, is thumbing its nose at calls for stricter gun control laws. Instead, it says Congress should put an armed guard in every school in America — right now.
The NRA is saying no to a ban on military-style assault rifles. Its solution to preventing another gun massacre like the one at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown is putting guns in the hands of trained professionals to protect children, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported.
“The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is good guy with a gun,” NRA Executive VP Wayne LaPierre said on Friday.
Officials of the pro-gun lobby, which for years has stopped congressional gun control measures cold, blamed the national propensity for violence — the Tucsons, the Auroras and the Newtown tragedy on the appetite for violent video games and music videos that venerate gun play and murder.
“Isn’t fantasizing about killing people as a way to get your kicks the filthiest form of pornography?” LaPierre said.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, one of the nation’s staunchest gun control advocates, called the NRA’s words “a shameful evasion of the crisis facing our country.”
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said he was disappointed.
“I don’t think that’s necessarily what the world was expecting from the NRA. I thought they were going to make some meaningful recommendations as to how to strengthen gun control,” Kelly said.
Meanwhile, in the Newtown area there was a mixed reaction on Friday.
“I don’t think there should be guns in school,” Rolland Travis said.
“I hate to see schools become fortresses. I hate to see us build up some sort of early resistance to the movement of people in the schools,” Robert Burns added.
“I’m mixed, too. It’s a tough situation right now. I am a gun owner. I had a home invasion. I believe in protecting my home and property, but semi-automatic weapons, the clips that have so many discharges, absolutely unnecessary,” Jerry Travis said.
“They’re on the point with video games. There’s no doubt about it that parents should keep an eye on that. I mean, how did the Nazis bring their kids up? They started as little kids and screwed their minds up,” Joseph Maloney added.
Meanwhile, President Barack Obama stepped up pressure on Congress to act. The president released a video responding to the hundreds of thousands of people who have signed online petitions demanding gun reform.
“I will do everything in my power to advance these efforts because if there’s even one thing we can do as a country to protect our children we have a responsibility to try,” the president said.
And Mark Kelly, whose wife, former congresswoman Gabby Giffords, was critically wounded in the Tucson massacre, said he was extremely disappointed with the NRA’s stance.
He said the organization chose “narrow partisan concerns over the safety of our families and communities,” adding “we just can’t wait any longer” for gun control reform.
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