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December 28, 2012

RONN MOTT: NRA off target

TERRE HAUTE — Wayne LaPierre, the vice president and executive director of the National Rifle Association, is causing even more agony among Americans because he leads an organization that refuses to get real about gun control.

By now, you have heard all of the arguments against semiautomatic assault rifles. They don’t help you hunting (I don’t know a single deer hunter who uses one) and I’m not sure it would help with a charging grizzly bear. It seems it’s only good for the killing of people.

I know some school districts in some states have guards in the schools, but guards in every school in every district, in every state, is absolutely ludicrous. Yet that’s what the NRA leader suggests. The cost, piled on top of other costs, would be staggering. Teachers are needed to teach, not to be gate guards in security.

It’s very simple. We don’t want to take away your damn hunting rifles, but we do want to take assault rifles, used by militaries around the world, out of civilian hands. Almost everybody in Afghanistan has an AK-47 or has access to AK-47s. It hasn’t brought peace to that country. It sure isn’t going to bring peace and/or tranquility to American schools to stick a guard in every school. (If a firefight erupts, where do the children go? Don’t tell me under their desks … that’s hardly any protection at all.)

Mr. LaPierre asked the question at his press conference, “When did the word gun become a dirty word?” It became a dirty word when the NRA became a political tool of the rabid right wing of the Republican Party. This is not about guns for the right wing … it is an attempt to destroy America so the people with all the money can enslave the rest of us. I smell a rat.

Let me point out an example. Grover Norquist, a man you have never had an opportunity to vote for, a man who owns much of the American Congress, is a board member on the National Rifle Association. Is he a hunter, climbing the slopes after mountain goats, or trekking through northern swamps after moose? No, it’s just another part of the right-wing agenda to destroy the Constitution and the right of Americans to vote.

The issue is whether everyone should have a semiautomatic machine gun. And we see children dying by the hundreds. Or, we take away the semiautomatic assault rifles and we get “real” about the issue.

So, go ahead, Mr. LaPierre. The more you shoot your mouth off and stand up for guns that are not needed in any sane proposition, the bigger the disdain grows for you and the upper echelon of the NRA.

The entire group of leaders in the NRA is not worth one of those first-graders in Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. I don’t know how the NRA sleeps at night.

Ronn Mott, a longtime radio personality in Terre Haute, writes commentaries for the Tribune-Star. His pieces are published online Tuesday and Thursday on Tribstar.com, and in the print and online editions on Saturday.

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