The Michael Bloomberg-backed Everytown For Gun Safety is blasting the Trump administration’s new guidance on critical sectors of the economy, which includes firearm and ammunition manufacturers, distributors, and retailers, calling it “shameful and nonsensical” that the Department of Homeland Security would recommend Americans still have access to their Second Amendment rights during the current emergency.
On a Monday afternoon press call, Everytown president John Feinblatt told reporters that the group is taking two steps; urging governors to ignore the Department of Homeland Security guidance and order gun stores closed, as well as sending DHS a letter urging them to reverse this decision.
Feinblatt claims that ordinarily Bloomberg’s anti-gun group wouldn’t support the closure of gun stores, because they support responsible gun ownership, but “these are anything but normal circumstances.” Feinblatt also launched an absurd attack on the National Rifle Association by asserting that no matter what the NRA says, “you can’t shoot a virus.” Obviously the NRA has said no such thing, and the countless Americans who’ve become gun owners for the first time over the past month aren’t trying to shoot their way out of being infected. They’re concerned about the safety and security of themselves and their families, but to hear Feinblatt tell it, they’ve all just succumbed to a massive propaganda campaign by the National Rifle Association.
In fact, the NRA and the Trump administration were the two big bogeymen throughout the call with reporters. Moms Demand Action’s Shannon Watts claimed, “the gun lobby has fear-mongered to stoke gun sales throughout this pandemic, pedaling the lie that more guns make us safer. The Trump administration just gave that myth its seal of approval, proving once again that President Trump cares more about lining gun dealers’ pockets than saving American lives.”
Neither Feinblatt or Watts acknowledged that there have been plenty of Democrat governors who’ve declared that gun stores are essential businesses and can remain open, including J.B. Pritzker in Illinois, Ned Lamont in Connecticut, Andy Beshear in Kentucky, and Tom Wolf in Pennsylvania, who reversed course and allowed gun stores to re-open after originally refusing to declare the retailers essential businesses. Are these politicians also “tools of the gun lobby”? Rather than face facts, Bloomberg’s gun control groups are peddling fiction.
The truth is that Americans were lining up to buy firearms and ammunition long before the NRA or any other Second Amendment organization said a word about coronavirus. As I wrote on Sunday, it’s perfectly reasonable to want a firearm for self-defense right now, and the long lines and empty shelves at gun stores across the country aren’t signs that people are being brainwashed by the NRA, but a sign that the “don’t own a gun” mentality of anti-gun organizations is simply a losing argument as Americans become more concerned about the economic impacts of the emergency and what the future might hold.
Rather than spend their time developing online training resources for America’s new gun owners, these so-called “gun safety” groups are simply demanding that Americans who don’t currently own a firearm be stopped from acquiring one. Feinblatt is right that these are anything but normal times, but that’s an argument for getting a gun, not shutting down gun stores. Gun control advocates are showing their true agenda right now, and it’s not about gun safety. It’s about preventing gun ownership instead.