Issues ››› Guns
  • NRA’s Ted Nugent Makes “Vote For Donald Trump” Pitch: Hillary Clinton Is A “Lying Hypocrite Bitch”

    Blog ››› ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

    National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent urged his supporters to vote for GOP nominee Donald Trump in a racially charged rant that labeled Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton a “lying hypocrite bitch.”

    In a August 24 post on his Facebook page, Nugent claimed that gun-related homicides “are largely the result of recidivistic, gangster, ‘black lives don’t matter’ punks killing other recidivistic gangster, ‘black lives don’t matter’ punks.”

    “Not you. Not me. Leave us the hell alone!” Nugent added.

    In fact, according to an analysis of a Centers for Disease Control study, “more than 80 percent of gun homicides are non-gang related.”

    Nugent then downplayed the danger to the public posed by assault weapons, ignoring their ubiquitous involvement in public mass shootings, before calling Clinton a “Scammaster lying hypocrite bitch.” He concluded his post by writing, “Vote for Donald Trump and make America Great Again”:

    This year Nugent has called for Clinton, along with President Obama, to be hanged for treason and also shared a fake video of Clinton being shot to death, writing, “I got your guncontrol right here bitch!”

    Both the NRA and Nugent have endorsed Trump for president. 

  • NRA Co-Host: It Would Be Nice If Blacks Joined Whites In "Respecting Authority And Taking Responsibility"

    Chuck Holton: "White Privilege" Is "Simply The Culture That We Have Created, That Our Fathers And Grandfathers Have Worked Hard To Create"

    Blog ››› ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

    A co-host of a National Rifle Association web series made racially charged comments while promoting a new video from the NRA that attacks the Black Lives Matter movement.

    The latest episode of the NRA series Frontlines, a web program co-hosted by NRA Life of Duty’s Chuck Holton, features Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke attacking Black Lives Matter as a “dangerous, hateful, destructive ideology.” Clarke is a frequent guest on Fox News, where he makes often inflammatory claims about Black Lives Matter.

    Holton called in to the NRA’s radio show, Cam & Company, August 19 to promote Clarke’s Frontlines episode, and during his appearance Holton also lobbed several attacks against “the black community.” He talked about gangs, absent fathers, and welfare, before saying, “And you hear college students complain about white privilege. You know my definition of white privilege? It’s just simply the culture that we have created, that our fathers and grandfathers have worked hard to create.”

    According to Holton, white privilege is “a culture of individual responsibility, where you take responsibility for your own actions, a culture that respects authority. And you know what, if that creates a community that is better than these inner-city communities where there is no respect for authority, where there's no fathers in the home -- guess what? If you live in that inner-city community and you don't like it, you are welcome to join our community and take advantage of this ‘privilege’ that we have any time you want.”

    “You're welcome to come. All you have to do is join us in respecting authority and taking responsibility for your own actions,” Holton continued.

    During his appearance, Holton also mused about what would happen if police officers refused to do their job in black communities. Holton said that in talking to police officers while making the Frontlines episode, one comment he repeatedly heard was, “If we really were out to kill black people, we would just stay home for a couple of weeks. We would just stop policing their neighborhoods, because they kill each other much more often than we kill them.” Holton called that claim “a really powerful point.”

    While attacking “the black community," Holton positively cited a video about “white privilege” made by Irish blogger Stefan Molyneux, saying that Molyneaux had described the “root cause” of problems in the African-American community “very well.”

    The video Holton is referencing pushes the myth of “Irish slavery” -- the popular talking point within the white nationalist community that America’s first slaves were Irish. In the video, Molyneux credits “white Western Christian Europeans” with ending slavery, saying, “That is one of the great and crowning achievements of Western European civilization, was the end of slavery. And like life and in history, what good deed doesn’t go unpunished? So the only culture that fought to end slavery worldwide in the greatest moral crusade in the history of the planet to date is really the only group that now gets blamed for slavery. This is ridiculous.”

    Molyneux's video was well-received in the white nationalist community, with The Daily Stormer writing, “is This Dude About to Go Full Nazi?” and praising Molyneux because “he even goes out of his way to talk about the Jew role in the slave trade.”

    Holton previously published a column in the NRA’s magazine America’s 1st Freedom that included a racial slur that is used to describe people from India or the Middle East.

  • NRA Compares Hillary Clinton To “Deranged” Fictional Murderer: “Put The Bat Down, Hillary”

    Blog ››› ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

    The National Rifle Association’s online magazine compared Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to ax-wielding murderer Jack Torrance, the character in The Shining portrayed by Jack Nicholson.

    The NRA has frequently pushed the lie that Clinton opposes all gun ownership and would ban and confiscate privately owned guns as president. The organization recently spent $3 million on an ad that claimed Clinton “doesn’t believe in your right to keep a gun at home for self-defense.” That claim was rated false by independent fact-checkers.

    During an August 16 rally in Philadelphia, Clinton explained her position on gun regulation, saying, “I am going to take on the gun lobby to try to save lives here in Philadelphia and across Pennsylvania. And as I said here in Philadelphia in my speech, that doesn’t mean I want to abolish the Second Amendment. That doesn’t mean that I want to round up people’s guns. What that means is I want to keep you from being shot by somebody who shouldn’t have a gun in the first place.”

    In an August 18 article in America’s 1st Freedom, the NRA responded to Clinton’s comments at the rally, writing, “In other words, Clinton is like a deranged Jack Nicholson in ‘The Shining’: ‘I said, I’m not gonna hurt ya. I’m just going to bash your brains in.’ Reasonable people are not persuaded by such verbal antics.”

    The NRA confusingly concluded its analogy between Clinton and Jack Torrance by writing, “Put the bat down, Hillary.” In the scene the NRA is referring to in The Shining, a raving Jack Torrance says that line to his wife Wendy as she attempts to fend him off with a baseball bat.

  • NRA Magazine: Gunned-Down Dallas Police Officers “Gave Their Lives” For Gun Rights

    NRA: Fatal Shootings Of Police “Have Come To Define The Political Left In America Today”

    Blog ››› ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

    The latest cover story in the NRA’s magazine, America’s 1st Freedom, purports to honor Dallas police officers killed in a July ambush attack, but instead uses the officers’ deaths to claim “the greatest dishonor to their memory” would be to allow “the Democratic establishment” to pass stronger gun safety laws.

    The magazine cover also includes a fold-out ad promoting an NRA “banned guns raffle” where entrants have a chance to win an AK-style assault weapon similar to the one used in the Dallas attack.

    On July 7, a gunman wielding an AK-74 assault weapon targeted police officers working at a peaceful protest in downtown Dallas following recent police killings of two African-American men, Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota, which were captured on video. Five police officers were killed, and seven officers and civilians were wounded, before the gunman was killed by police.

    The September cover story in America’s 1st Freedom, titled “Ambushing America’s Cops,” blames attacks against law enforcement on progressives, claiming that the Dallas ambush was “just the latest, and most vicious, in a long line of attacks on law enforcement -- attacks that have come to define the political left in America today.”

    The article then attempts to directly connect President Obama and former Attorney General Eric Holder to attacks on law enforcement officers, baselessly suggesting that the shooters were inspired to act by things they said:

    Even before the facts were clear, Obama used those cases [the police shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile] to assert that such incidents are “symptomatic of a broader set of racial disparities that exist in our criminal justice system.”

    “When incidents like this occur,” Obama went on, “there’s a big chunk of our fellow citizenry that feels as if because of the color of their skin, they are not being treated the same. And that hurts.”

    Just hours after Obama spoke, a madman murdered five police in Dallas, and another killer shot a policeman in Bristol, Tenn.


    Even though the U.S. Justice Department ultimately cleared Police Officer Darren Wilson of any wrongdoing in the death of [Michael] Brown -- Brown, after all, had attacked Wilson and tried to steal his service weapon -- Obama’s attorney general at the time, Eric Holder, said, “It is not difficult to imagine how a single, tragic incident set off the city of Ferguson like a powder keg.”

    It’s also not difficult to imagine how Holder’s words might have added tinder to an already explosive situation: Just days after Holder’s remarks, two Ferguson policemen were shot.

    (According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, a search warrant related to the Ferguson incident indicates that the suspect in that case was attempting to shoot at an individual he was having a dispute with and was not aiming at the police officers who were hit by gunfire.)

    The NRA article concludes by using the Dallas police shooting to dismiss calls for stronger gun safety laws by “the Democratic establishment” in the wake of incidents of mass public violence. The article claims that it would be “disrespectful” and “the greatest dishonor” to the memory of the officers killed to advocate for more gun safety laws and suggests that the slain officers “gave their lives” to protect the NRA’s vision for gun laws in America (emphasis added):

    Whether it’s terrorists who attack a holiday party in San Bernardino, Calif., gangsters who murder each other every day in Chicago, an ISIS-inspired jihadist who opens fire in a nightclub, or a madman enraged by racist rhetoric to ambush Dallas police, the answer, we’re told by the Democratic establishment, is to surrender yet more of our God-given freedom to protect ourselves.

    In light of the supreme sacrifice those Dallas police officers made in July, the most disrespectful thing we could do -- the greatest dishonor to their memory we could make -- would be to surrender the freedoms they gave their lives to defend.


    Dallas Police Chief David Brown, who is shown mourning on the magazine’s cover, has actually voiced concerns to legislators over Texas laws that allow assault weapons to be openly carried in public. (Open carry of assault weapons, a practice that the NRA defends, has become increasingly common in Texas and some other states in recent years.)

    During the July ambush, efforts to take down the gunman were complicated by the fact that the attack took place at a protest where about 20 people were openly carrying rifles.

    Brown discussed the issue during a press conference, noting that he had expressed “concerns” to legislators about Texas’ open carry law and explaining that “it's increasingly challenging when people have AR-15s slung over and shootings occur in a crowd and they begin running, and we don't know … if they're the shooter or not, or they begin, it's been the presumption that a good guy with a gun is the best way to resolve some of these things. Well, we don't know who the good guy is versus who the bad guy is if everybody starts shooting, and we've expressed that concern as well.”

    Brown’s image on the cover of America’s 1st Freedom is partially obscured by an advertisement for a giveaway of a gun similar to the one used in the Dallas attack.

    The cover proclaims “NRA is GIVING AWAY guns that Hillary Clinton wants to BAN!”:

    When the fold-out is opened, a number of guns that have military-style features -- and therefore could be included in an assault weapons ban -- are listed.

    The give-away guns include several military-style assault weapons, including one that is particularly similar to the rifle used in the Dallas attack: The CMMG Mk 47 AKM2 Mutant.

    Like the Saiga AK-74 used to ambush police officers in Dallas, the CMMG firearm has features from the AK platform first popularized by the invention of the AK-47. (The CMMG weapon also has features from the AR assault weapon platform, giving it its “Mutant” moniker.) Here is the gun used in the attack:

    Here is a picture of the CMMG Mk 47 from another NRA magazine’s review of the assault weapon:

    The CMMG assault weapon uses 7.62x39mm ammunition while the AK-74 takes a slightly smaller 5.45x39mm cartridge.

  • Fact-Checkers Blast "Leaps Of Logic" In NRA's Attack Ad: "Clinton Has Never Said That"


    Fact-checkers at PolitiFact and The Washington Post debunked an ad released by the National Rifle Association that claims Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton “doesn’t believe in your right to keep a gun at home for self-defense.” The NRA, which endorsed GOP nominee Donald Trump in May, has spent nearly $5 million opposing Clinton this election cycle, including $3 million in spending on the recent ad that falsely attacks Clinton.

  • NRA's "Second Amendment" News Program All But Ignores Trump's "Second Amendment People" Firestorm

    NRA News Is “Your First Source For Second Amendment News” -- Except, Apparently, For Information About The Trump Outrage

    Blog ››› ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

    The National Rifle Association’s news program for “the Second Amendment and other freedom-related issues” barely mentioned GOP nominee Donald Trump’s claim that “Second Amendment people” could do something about Hillary Clinton’s judicial nominations.

    The August 10 broadcast of Cam & Company offered no substantive discussion of Trump’s comment, only turning to the remark near the end of the broadcast to immediately dismiss it as a “manufactured controversy” and then using it to pivot to attack Clinton.

    During a August 9 rally in North Carolina, Trump said, “Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish the Second Amendment. By the way, if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is.”

    The comment was widely interpreted -- including by members of conservative media -- as a reference to a violent overthrow of a potential Clinton administration or as a threat of violence against Clinton or her judicial nominees.

    In the face of these condemnations, the NRA -- which largely invented, and often promotes, the idea that the Second Amendment’s purpose is to allow the violent overthrow of a "tyrannical" government -- defended Trump by twisting what he had said to make it seem less extreme. (The NRA endorsed Trump in May during the group’s annual meeting.)

    The next day, August 10, Trump’s “Second Amendment people” comment continued to dominate the news cycle, making it one of the most widely discussed Second Amendment stories in 2016.

    The most notable news show devoted to Second Amendment issues, the NRA’s Cam & Company, failed to offer significant coverage or discussion of Trump's "Second Amendment people" claim.

    Cam & Company addressed the firestorm surrounding Trump only toward the end of its three-hour Wednesday broadcast. Returning from commercial break, host Cam Edwards said, “Your first source for Second Amendment news and information, it is NRA News Cam & Company.”

    After introducing his guest Stephen Kruiser of PJ Media, Edwards said, “So listen, I got to tell you, I have not spent a lot of time talking about the manufactured controversy du jour today,” and then, adopting a mock-incredulous tone, he continued, “But did you hear what Donald Trump said yesterday? What does it mean?”

    Edwards never shared what Trump actually said, quickly pivoting to attacking the media for allegedly devoting insufficient coverage to supposed controversies surrounding the Clinton campaign before turning to general complaints about media coverage of the 2016 election. Then Edwards changed the subject, joking with Kruiser at length about a news report concerning the escape of a service monkey.

    Cam & Company could have taken the time to discuss the Trump's “Second Amendment people” comment if Edwards had wanted to: The August 10 broadcast also devoted nearly seven minutes to criticizing the new Ghostbusters reboot.

  • Media Figures Condemn Trump’s “Second Amendment People” Remark For Its Similarity To Violent Anti-Abortion Rhetoric

    ››› ››› BOBBY LEWIS

    After Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump commented at a rally that, if Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is elected, “Second Amendment people” can “do” something about her judicial nominations, several media figures condemned Trump’s “dog whistle” for “mirror[ing]” violent rhetoric from anti-abortion extremists.

  • Hispanic Media Slam Trump For Defending His “Second Amendment People” Comment By Blaming Media

    ››› ››› DINA RADTKE

    Hispanic journalists are criticizing Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump for doubling down on his comments about “Second Amendment people” being able to “do” something about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s potential judicial nominees, a remark that many interpreted as a call for violence against the Democratic candidate. Hispanic media rehashed Trump’s plethora of reckless statements and noted his pattern of responding to backlash “not with apologies but rather justifications” and by blaming the media.

  • Trump Just Proved Why Reporters Shouldn’t Try To Clarify What He “Meant”

    Blog ››› ››› TYLER CHERRY

    By tripling down on his comments that President Obama was the “founder of ISIS,” Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump proved futile reporters’ repeated attempts to clarify that he “meant” something different.

    Trump told supporters during an August 10 campaign stop, “‘In many respects, you know, [ISIS] honor[s] President Obama ... He’s the founder of ISIS. He’s the founder of ISIS. He’s the founder. He founded ISIS.” On August 11, Trump repeated the line on CNBC’s Squawk Box.

    Some media figures, including conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt, attempted to clean up Trump’s comments and explain what he really “meant,” claiming that Trump’s comments were “not literal,” but just a poorly worded criticism of President Obama’s terror policies.

    Hewitt hosted Trump on August 11 and tried desperately to help Trump walk back his comments, guiding him by saying, “I know what you meant. You meant that he created the vacuum [for ISIS], he lost the peace.”

    But Trump immediately refuted Hewitt’s assertion, responding, “No, I meant he’s the founder of ISIS. I do.”

    Hewitt tried again, saying, “[B]y using the term founder, they’re hitting with you on this again. Mistake?”

    Trump again denied that he meant something different than what he said: “No, it’s no mistake. Everyone’s liking it. I think they’re liking it.”

    This exchange perfectly exemplifies why the media figures who repeatedly try to rehab Trump’s statements consistently miss the mark. Some in the media have explained why attempts at Trump cleanups are unwarranted altogether. As Business Insider’s Josh Barro wrote:

    It doesn't really matter what Trump meant. It matters what he said — a reckless comment that might or might not be outrageous, depending on your interpretation. This has happened over and over during the campaign, and it would happen, with much higher stakes, during his presidency.

    What the president says matters. Presidents' comments can move markets, create policy, inflame foreign tensions, and even start wars. It is therefore important that presidents be careful.

    Yet media figures’ attempts to clarify what Trump really means also surfaced on August 9, when several conservative commentators tried to interpret Trump’s remark that “Second Amendment people” could do something to prevent Hillary Clinton picking Supreme Court nominees.

    Those attempting to rewrite Trump’s intent -- be it for his comments about ISIS, the Second Amendment, or for the inevitable next round of outrageous comments -- are coming dangerously close to mirroring the role of a Trump surrogate.

  • Here’s How Conservative Media Commentators Are Excusing Trump’s Second Amendment Comments


    Conservative media figures attempted to downplay and justify Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's comments about “Second Amendment people” being able to “do” something about  Hillary Clinton’s possible judicial nominees, blaming "the Clinton spin machine," claiming his comments were taken "out of context," and equating his "joke" to previous statements made by other politicians.