The most powerful gun lobby in the United States has rejected calls for putting additional restraints on firearms and ammunition sales despite rising gun violence across the country.
Wayne LaPierre, the vice-president of the National Rifle Association (NRA), said in an interview on Sunday that the new bill to ban military-style assault weapons was “phoney” and would not reduce America’s mass shootings.
LaPierre, instead, reiterated NRA’s proposal to place an armed guard in all the schools in the US and claimed that securing the mental health system and indicting the criminals were the solutions to gun violence in the country.
His remarks came after Democratic Senator Diane Feinstein vowed to table a bill to outlaw at least 100 military-style semi-automatic assault weapons and restrain the possession, transfer and importation of such arms.
LaPierre, however, said it would be “a phoney piece of legislation, and I do not believe it will pass for this reason.” Adding, “It is all built on lies that have been found out.”
“I don’t think it will [work]. I keep saying it, and you just won’t accept it: it’s not going to work, it hasn’t worked. [Senator] Dianne Feinstein had her ban and Columbine occurred,” he also said, referring to the 1999 shooting at Columbine High School that took place while a similar ban was in force.
Under the 1994 ban, the manufacture and sale of 19 specific gun models and their close copies were banned. Firearms with two or more such components, like a detachable magazine or flash suppressor, were also prohibited. The legislation expired in 2004.
The US gun violence came under spotlight after a massacre in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, when a 20-year-old man, identified as Adam Lanza, killed twenty children and six adults at the Sandy Hook school.
On Friday, rather than supporting the restraint of gun control to avoid similar massacre, the powerful gun lobby defended gun owners’ rights, demanding the deployment of armed guards to every school in America.
“The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” LaPierre said in a press conference on Friday, and was interrupted by a person holding a banner reading “NRA Killing Our Kids.”