While anti-gunners have been accusing President Donald Trump of folding to pressure from gun rights groups, gun rights activists are still stinging over his administration’s move to criminalize bump stocks unilaterally rather than going through the legislative process. In other words, the president hasn’t exactly been making much of anyone happy when it comes to guns.
But a signal to where his actual allegiance may lie comes from his decision to speak at the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting.
President Donald Trump is expected to speak at this week’s annual National Rifle Association (NRA) convention, a White House official confirmed on Sunday.
Trump has addressed the annual gathering of the influential gun rights lobbying group for the last two years, but this years’ meeting comes amid renewed debate about gun legislation in the wake of the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida.
CNN first reported that Trump would appear at this year’s meeting, which will be held from May 3-6 in Dallas, Texas. According to Dallas News he will address the conference on Friday, the same day as Vice President Mike Pence. Activists have accused the NRA of hypocrisy for banning guns during the president and vice president’s appearance.
Just to interject here, but the NRA isn’t the one banning guns. That’s the Secret Service. If you want the president or vice president to speak, there will be no guns in the room except theirs. The NRA has no say on the matter.
It’s always been like that and, until the Secret Service changes its rules–which isn’t likely to happen–it’ll remain like that indefinitely.
Anyway, back to the story:
The address comes only two months after Trump unveiled a series of school safety and gun control measures in response to the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on February 14, in which 17 people were killed.
Students of the school have launched a campaign for tighter gun control laws following the killings, and Trump initially said the administration was mulling introducing tighter background checks and some age restrictions for those wanting to buy firearms.
Neither measure made its way into the administration’s reform package though, after Trump met NRA lobbysits in the White House. The president was accused of buckling to pressure from the organisation, having previously chided Republicans for being “terrified” of the group.
This is the typical gun grabber argument that everyone really agrees with them but is too scared of the NRA to show it. It’s not possible that a politician spoke with NRA reps and thought, “You know what? You fellows made excellent points.” Nope. Fear and money are the only reasons anyone would oppose gun control.
President Trump has spoken at the NRA annual meetings for the last couple of years, and he’ll be coming back. In part, I hope he explains his earlier willingness to throw our Second Amendment rights under the bus. Additionally, I hope he’ll tell us why he stepped away from that, not because Second Amendment advocates really need to know, but because the anti-gunners do.