Gun Laws & Legislation

Wayne LaPierre responds to the State of the Union address

Wayne LaPierre Executive Vice President, NRA
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It’s good to be here among friends. Your support has always meant a lot to me and I thank you for your warm welcome. Two nights ago, President Barack Obama delivered his State of the Union Address. In that speech, the president displayed a level of political fraud and public deception that cannot be ignored.

Before we get to that, let’s go back about two months. Days after tragedy struck Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Ct., the president held a press conference at the White House.

“We’re going to have to look at schools,” the president said, later adding that Sandy Hook “… should be a wake-up call for all of us to say that if we are not getting right the need to keep our children safe, then nothing else matters.” Nothing else matters.

The NRA agreed about making our schools safer for our children. A few days after the president’s press conference, we announced the NRA School Shield program to put trained, qualified, armed police or security officers in every school in the country.

The media scoffed at our proposal. The president said he was “skeptical.”

But Americans agreed with the NRA, that nothing else mattered more than the safety of our schoolchildren.

Already, more than 23,000 schools have armed guards and in all 50 states, government officials, local authorities and school districts are considering their own initiatives to protect schools with armed security — because when it comes to keeping our kids safe at school, nothing else matters.

That is, until the State of the Union address, two days ago. This was the president’s first State of the Union of his second term. This was the address in which the president laid out his most ambitious agenda, focused on the issues of greatest importance to him.

In an hour-long speech, nowhere were the words “school safety” to be found. Less than two months after saying we had to look at our schools, the president made not one mention, in his entire speech, of the need to improve security for our schoolchildren.

When nothing else matters — to every parent in America — President Obama had nothing to say about school security. And nothing he’s proposed has anything to do with protecting one child in any school.

A year ago, I began to warn America’s gun owners that, if re-elected, President Obama would set about dismantling the Second Amendment.

That, with no more elections to worry about, the president would wait for the right political opportunity to exploit and launch the most aggressive campaign in history to destroy our rights.

Bans on millions of commonly owned rifles, shotguns and handguns … bans on tens of millions of standard magazines … bans on private transfers, even between family members … import bans … a federal database to track firearms and their owners, tantamount to national registration of every single gun owner in the country.

It was only a few weeks ago when they were marketing their anti-gun agenda as a way of protecting schoolchildren from harm. That charade ended at the State of the Union, when the president himself exposed their fraudulent intentions.

It’s not about keeping our kids safe at school. That wasn’t even mentioned in the president’s speech. They only care about their decades-old gun control agenda — ban every gun they can, tax every gun sold and register every gun owner.

This president has taken the art of public deception and manipulation to a whole new level. Consider his proposal for so-called “universal background checks.”

At first glance, it sounds like a reasonable, good idea. But there’s nothing “universal” about it. It’s a universal failure from the start.

Think about it. Criminals won’t be part of their universe. They’ll steal their guns or get them and everything else they want on the black market.

Even when felons do try to buy a gun and are flagged by the system, they’re almost never stopped. In 2010, out of 76,000 denied purchasers, only 13 were successfully prosecuted under federal law for illegally attempting to buy a gun. That universal failure endangers us all!

The mentally ill will never be part of their universe. For the last 20 years, since the NICS system came on line, government has failed to include records of those judged mentally ill by a court of law.

If we can’t even get those records into the system, are we truly to believe that government can require medical professionals to add the records of mentally disturbed patients into the system? They’ll never be part of President Obama’s universe.

The only people who will be checked are law-abiding, normal, sane, decent Americans. It will our names — the names of good people — that will be put into a massive database, subject to potential federal registration and abuse of privacy. And none of it — from universal checks to universal gun bans — none of it does anything to keep our children safer in their schools.

That’s not what President Obama wants. That’s why he didn’t even mention it in his speech.

But it’s what we want. We care as parents and we care as law-abiding gun owners.

We are the millions and millions of Americans who take responsibility for our own safety and protection of our children as a God-given right.  We are proud to exercise that right, are not ashamed of it and deserve nothing less than absolute respect and admiration as lawful gun owners.

And for our Second Amendment freedom, Mr. President, WE WILL STAND AND FIGHT! We will not be duped by the frauds in the White House or the Congress who would deny our right to semiautomatic technology and all the magazine capacity we want to defend ourselves and our families.

Mr. President, the National Rifle Association is nearly 5 million members strong, and growing by the thousands every day. We will continue to support what will work to make our children and our families safer. And what you failed to even mention in your speech — fixing our broken mental health system … swift, certain prosecution of every criminal with a gun … and because millions of our children remain today as vulnerable and unprotected as ever — we renew our call for armed police and security officers in every school in America.

When it comes to keeping our kids safe at school, nothing else matters.

Thank you.