The National Rifle Association (NRA), stung by outrage over its response to the slaughter of 20 school children in Newtown, Conn., yesterday modified its stance on guns in schools.
NRA head Wayne LaPierre, speaking at a hastily-convened press conference, said, “in the heat of the moment, after the terrible events at Sandy Hook Elementary, I proposed that teachers and school officials all across the country be armed. I understand the anger people expressed after I made that statement. It was unfortunately incomplete, and gave people the wrong impression. For that I apologize.
"What I should have said was that everyone in every school should be armed. It’s not fair to expect teachers and principals alone to carry the burden of defending their schools, when the students could and should be armed, as well.
"What armed-to-the-gills lunatic in his right mind would try to invade a school if every child there was packing heat? Imagine what might have happened if instead of being in a gun-free zone, every six-year-old at Sandy Hook had had a serious weapon. That guy would’ve been toast. Sure, some kids and teachers might have been caught in the crossfire, but I bet you a nickel-plated slug the body count would have been a lot less."
"This policy would have other benefits, as well. Kids would think twice before starting arguments on the playground if they knew the other guy had a Bushmaster .223 tucked into his jeans. And no child is going to talk back to a teacher who has a Ruger in his desk drawer. Unless the kid has more firepower, of course, but that’s an issue for another time and place."
Reminded that half the students in high school probably already have guns in their lockers, LaPierre replied, “Yes, and I admit that’s a real problem. If some nutbag invades the school, there’s no time for the kids to go out in the hall and grab their Smith and Wessons. They should have them in their lunchboxes or in their briefcases where they can get to them quickly.
"Again, I apologize for my hasty comments after Newtown. I hope this clarifies the NRA’s position on the issue.
"One last thing before we adjourn. I’m personally appalled that some politicians and many in the media chose to use this terrible tragedy for political gain.
"That’s our job.”