Guns Down Guns Down

Cut Through The Lies At The NRA Convention

May 3, 2018

As you watch the NRA’s 2018 annual meeting, here are the very best facts to cut through the gun lobby’s B.S. Please share this widely with your friends and family. Click here for graphics and visualizations of some of the tweets below. 

Background Checks Chicago College Campuses
Criminals Don’t Follow Laws Existing Laws Fear
Freedom Good Guy with a Gun Gun Owners
Gun Ownership Gun Free Zones Guns are Deadly
Hate, Guns, and the NRA The Media Mental Health
More Guns, More Crime The NRA’s Power The NRA’s Racism
Their Russian Ties The Second Amendment Self-Defense
Video Games Women Youth and Guns

Background Checks

Background checks do work. They’ve stopped 2.4 million sales and saved hundreds of thousands of lives. Click to Tweet

Chicago

Guns flood into Chicago from states with weak laws, including the Vice Presidents’s home state of Indiana. 60% of guns used in crimes across Illinois came from out of state. Click to Tweet

College Campuses

The NRA says guns will make college campuses safer. The research says they actually make them *more* dangerous. Click to Tweet

Criminals Don’t Follow Laws

Gun laws do work. 10 states with the WEAKEST gun laws have an aggregate level of gun violence that is more than 3x higher than the 10 states with the STRONGEST gun laws. Click to Tweet

States that require background checks for ALL handgun sales have lower rates of: intimate partner gun homicides of women; law enforcement officers killed with handguns; gun-related suicides. Click to Tweet

Existing Laws

75% of the weapons used in mass shootings between 1982 and 2012 were purchased legally. There is something very wrong with our existing gun laws. Click to Tweet

.@NRA pretends to support law enforcement, but has spent the last two years brutally attacking the @FBI for focusing on Russia’s efforts to undermine our elections. Click to Tweet

.@NRA says it supports law enforcement, but its “guns everywhere” agenda constantly puts them at risk. 1/4 of police officers slain in the line of duty in 2016 were killed by an assault weapon. Click to Tweet

.@NRA sabotages law enforcement at every turn: it limits inspections of firearms dealers, forces destruction of background-check records, impedes prosecutions of illegal gun sales. The list goes on and on… Click to Tweet

Fear

The NRA uses fear to accomplish two goals: 1. Continue to fundraise off its members and grow its coffers, 2. Sell more guns for the gun industry. Click to Tweet

Freedom

I have the right to live free from gun violence. Click to Tweet

My freedom doesn’t need a gun. Click to Tweet

Good Guy with a Gun

An FBI study of 160 active shooting incidents found that: 21 active shooters stopped by UNARMED civilians, 1 stopped by an ARMED civilian. Click to Tweet

Gun Owners

The overwhelming majority of gun owners actually reject the NRA’s extremist agenda and believe that guns should be significantly harder to get. Click to Tweet

Gun Ownership

The NRA won’t tell you this, but gun ownership is declining. Number of American households w/ guns has fallen 19 percentage points from 50% in 1977 to 31% in 2014. Guns are concentrated in the hands of fewer people & NRA is helping gun makers find new markets. Click to Tweet

Gun-Free Zones

Of the 156 mass shootings from 2009 to 2016, only 10% occurred in “gun-free zones.” The overwhelming majority occurred in private homes. Click to Tweet

Guns are Deadly

More Americans have died from guns in the last 50 years than in all of the wars in American history. Click to Tweet

Domestic assaults that involve firearms are 3x more likely to result in death than knives. Click to Tweet

The NRA will never tell you this, but we have more public mass shootings in America than in any other country in the world. Click to Tweet

The gun murder rate in the U.S. is 25x higher than in our peer nations. Click to Tweet

Hate, Guns, and the NRA 

Dana Loesch refuses to recognize the identity of trans people, saying, “I’m not going to suddenly pretend that this individual who is pretending to be a woman is a part of my sisterhood.” Click to Tweet

NRA head Wayne LaPierre has called President Obama a “demographically symbolic president.” Click to Tweet

In defending Trump’s Muslim ban, NRATV host Grant Stinchfield claimed “all radicalized terrorists are Muslims.” Click to Tweet

NRATV host Bill Whittle criticized Black Lives Matter for focusing on police brutality instead of black-on-black homicide and claimed “90 percent or more of the racial problems that we have in this country are manufactured by the left.” Click to Tweet

The Media

The NRA portrays itself and its members as victims under constant attack by the press, liberals, and Hollywood elites. In reality, the NRA is *incredibly powerful.* It takes in $300M in revenue every year & pays its chief executive over $1M per year. Click to Tweet

Mental Health

FACT: Only 5% of violence is attributable to mental illness. Click to Tweet

People with mental illness are far more likely to be the victims of violence (they are 5x more likely to die by homicide than the general population & 2x as likely to die from suicide) than the perpetrators of violence. Click to Tweet

More Guns, More Crime

More guns = more crime. A 2017 Stanford University study found that states with loose concealed carry laws experience 13%-15% increase in crime. Click to Tweet

FACT: States with higher levels of gun ownership experience a gun murder rate that’s up to 114% higher than states with low levels of gun ownership. Click to Tweet

The NRA’s Power

Since the shooting in Parkland, 7 states have passed new restrictions on guns and public support for gun measures is at all-time highs. Click to Tweet

The NRA’s Racism

Former @NRA head Harlon Carter waged an “all-out war to hurl… Mexican wetbacks back into Mexico” as head of Border Patrol in 1954 and tried to use U.S. military to remove undocumented immigrants in “Operation Wetback.” Click to Tweet

.@NRA head LaPierre called Obama a “demographically symbolic president” in 2015. Click to Tweet

NRATV hired commentator Bill Whittle who promoted discredited theories about black people being less intelligent and claimed African Americans commit voter fraud on behalf of Democrats as a condition of ongoing slavery. Click to Tweet

Long-serving @NRA board member Ted Nugent devoted an entire 2015 column to praising the word “nigger,” including its use as a racial slur. Click to Tweet

Long-serving @NRA board member Ted Nugent called Trayvon Martin a “dope smoking, racist gangsta wannabe.” Click to Tweet

Their Russian Ties

The NRA is under investigation for secretly funneling Russian money to support the Trump campaign in the 2016 election. Click to Tweet

The Second Amendment

To the Founding Fathers, #2a was about citizens’ civic duty to defend their communities within the confines of a *militia.* Click to Tweet

FACT: If you search the phrase “right to bear arms” in the Congressional Record of the time period, you won’t find a single mention outside of the context of the military. Searching a database of all the writings and papers of the Founding Fathers reveals that “right to bear arms” only referred to the formation of militias. Click to Tweet

Self-Defense

Guns are used far more often in criminal homicides than in justifiable acts of self-defense. In 2014, for every self-defense gun homicide in the United States, guns were used in *34 criminal homicides.* Click to Tweet

Guns are nearly 2x as likely to be stolen than to be used for self-defense. Click to Tweet

A gun in the home doubles your risk of homicide, and triples your risk of suicide. Click to Tweet

For every 1 justifiable gun homicide in 2012, America experienced 34 criminal gun homicides, 78 gun suicides, and 2 accidental gun deaths. Click to Tweet

Video Games

An analysis of video game expenditures & violent crime rates in 10 industrial nations and found no relationship between increased video game playing and increased real-world killing. Click to Tweet

Women

The presence of a gun in a home with a history of domestic violence increases the risk that a woman will be killed by 500%. Click to Tweet

.@NRA has repeatedly defended Trump against detailed allegations of sexual assault and harassment. Click to Tweet

FACT: Women are 5X more likely to be killed if their abuser has access to a gun. Click to Tweet

Youth and Guns

U.S. children are far more likely to die from a gun accident. Click to Tweet

Gun violence has surpassed motor vehicle accidents as a leading killer of young people in U.S. Click to Tweet

A young person is shot & killed by a police officer in the United States almost every day. Click to Tweet

Out of the young people being shot by police officers, 34% were African Americans among which at least 40 were unarmed. Click to Tweet

African Americans between the ages of 15 and 29 are 18x more likely than their white peers to be the victim of a gun homicide. Click to Tweet

While African Americans accounted for 15% of the population of young people in this age range, they comprise 64 percent of gun homicide victims. Click to Tweet

From 2006 to 2015, the rate of domestic violence gun homicides of young women was 30 percent higher than for women of all ages. Click to Tweet

American teenagers are 82x more likely to die from a gun homicide than their international peers. Click to Tweet

One experiment found that a full 1/3 of 8-to-12 year old boys who came across a handgun actually pull the trigger — despite being counseled about how to safely behave around guns. Click to Tweet

This document was compiled by Guns Down and The Center for American Progress.

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