A member of the National Rifle Association Board of Directors compared states' efforts to strengthen gun violence prevention laws to Nazi Germany on an NRA news program, suggesting that Americans are being disarmed and that “the death of millions” could occur.
Ronnie Barrett, the outspoken manufacturer of a controversial armor-piercing sniper rifle and an NRA board member, made his prediction during the March 1 edition of the NRA's Cam & Company show on Sportsman Channel:
BARRETT: In all of history when this kind of stuff has happened before, it's bad news. You know and I hate to be one of these doomsday guys, but in past things like this result in the death of millions. You know, and World War II hasn't been 700 years ago, it's only been 70 years ago. And if people don't think that these things don't happen to modern, progressive, Christian nations like Germany was, they're wrong, brother, I mean we're sitting here just nearly repeating the same past of that, the disarming of the citizenry not based on any facts but based on cynical emotions that are put in and rushed through in the middle of the night before anybody has a chance to study the true facts, before their citizenry even knows what's going on. I mean holy smokes, what kind of state government was that? I can't believe that's one of the members of the Union here, one of the members of our Republic. It's just unimaginable.
Barrett made similar remarks on the February 5 edition of Cam & Company, suggesting that gun owners prevent “socialism” and make it so “you can't round up hoards of armed free people and put them in cattle cars.”
It is not unusual for members of NRA leadership to distort history to compare stronger firearm policies to Nazism or the Holocaust. In his book, America Disarmed: Inside the U.N. & Obama's Scheme to Destroy the Second Amendment, NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre equated the United Nations Small Arms and Light Weapons Destruction Day, held on July 9, 2001, to Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels' order that books authored by Jews be publicly burned. He then suggested that the burning of guns could “help set the stage for mass executions of gun owners” just as Goebbels' order precipitated the mass killing of Jews:
July 9 was not the first time bonfires were lit to destroy resistance to the power of the government. Nazi “Germany's Josef Goebbels ordered all Jewish books to be burned in public in May 10, 1933. University towns were centers of Jewish Books Destruction Day.” As the Völkischer Beobachter (Populist Observer) reported on May 12, 1933, “The German student body of the Berlin universities assembled yesterday for a torchlight procession on Hegel Platz. They formed up, accompanied by a truckload of 25,000 books and writings harmful to the people. The procession ended at Opera Platz where as a symbolic act, these un-German writings were set aflame on a pile of logs.”
The burning of Jewish and un-German books was followed within a few years by the burning of Jews and other supposedly un -German people. Jewish Books Destruction Day helped change popular consciousness so as to pave the way for genocide. Likewise paving the way for genocide was the systematic disarmament of Jews and all other opposition elements, in Nazi German itself and in conquered territories.
How long until a U.N.-declared official day of hate is celebrated with governments actually killing people?
Will the mass burning of firearms help set the stage for mass executions of gun owners? [America Disarmed: Inside the U.N. and Obama's Scheme to Destroy the Second Amendment, Pages 106-107, 108]
Beyond alleging a link between Nazi policies and gun violence prevention efforts, the NRA has also drawn ahistorical comparisons between gun ownership and the civil rights movement.
During a January 9 interview with birther website WND, NRA board member Ted Nugent stated that, “there will come a time when the gun owners of America, the law-abiding gun owners of America, will be the Rosa Parks and we will sit down on the front seat of the bus, case closed.” Leaders of the NAACP, Southern Christian Leadership Conference and National Urban League condemned Nugent for his comments.
Past NRA president Marion Hammer also received widespread criticism after appearing on NRA News in January to claim that an assault weapons ban was similar to racial discrimination. Hammer stated that, “banning people and things because of the way they look went out a long time ago. But here they are again. The color of a gun. The way it looks. It's just bad politics.”
In August 2012, NRA News host Cam Edwards and the NRA's lobbying wing, the Institute for Legislation Action, both compared a University of Colorado policy to house students who wished to carry a gun on campus in their own dormitory to the 1896 Supreme Court Plessy v. Ferguson decision which announced the “separate but equal” doctrine that was used to justify racial discrimination for decades.