Every year the National Rifle Association (NRA) holds an annual convention for gun enthusiasts and Second Amendment supporters. The 147th NRA Meetings and Exhibits will take place at the beginning of May in Dallas, Texas. But the NRA may now have a problem on its hands as a Dallas official is asking the organization to move the convention elsewhere.
The mayor pro tem of Dallas, Dwaine Caraway, is requesting the NRA move its event for fear of protests and demonstrations.
From ABC News:
Dwaine Caraway, mayor pro tem of Dallas, said that the NRA, the nation’s largest gun lobby, would be met with “marches and demonstrations” if it went ahead with plans to host the three-day meeting scheduled for May 4-6.
“It is a tough call when you ask the NRA to reconsider coming to Dallas, but it is putting all citizens first, and getting them to come to the table and elected officials to come to the table and to address this madness now,” Caraway told reporters on Monday. “At the end of the day, we need to connect the dots. The NRA needs to step up to the plate, and they need to show leadership.”
“I am saddened the fact that every time that we turn around is some type of gun violence,” he added.
If the NRA moved its event, that could cost Dallas as much as $40 million, according to some estimates.
Caraway, a self-proclaimed strong “believer” in the second amendment, said the NRA has a national responsibility “to address this madness now” as he called on the group to help establish better gun laws.
“We should not allow people to possess assault rifles and weapons,” he said. “While we are worrying about terrorists, we’re living in a terrorist society amongst us Americans today.”
“The NRA needs to step up to the plate and they need to show leadership,” he added.
The NRA has already announced event details on its website, and it is unclear whether or not it will heed Caraway’s request. Finding another convention center for “over 80,000 patriots and 800+ exhibitors” may be a tall order. If the convention were to move, there would be disappointment among Dallas residents who have been looking forward to the event for some time now. Not to mention, many out-of-town attendees have already made flight and hotel arrangements.
The request to move the event comes after a tragic shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida that resulted in the deaths of 17 people.
As in the aftermath of past mass shootings, politicians and Americas on the left side of the political aisle are accusing the NRA of enabling such attacks. Political commentators have condemned the NRA for its donations to Republican politicians, as well, and many are labeling the NRA as a terrorist organization, adding that it and members of the GOP have blood on their hands.
— Courier Journal (@courierjournal) February 20, 2018
— Billy Corben (@BillyCorben) February 20, 2018
— Lauren Duca (@laurenduca) February 15, 2018
— VoteVets (Text VOTEVETS to 88424) (@votevets) February 15, 2018
30 Americans killed daily by gun violence. This is a national security issue. Yet trump and GOP refuse to take action to save American lives. They care far more about NRA donations than saving the lives of our children. #never again
— (((DeanObeidallah))) (@DeanObeidallah) February 20, 2018
The NRA has yet to respond to the request.