When the National Rifle Association gathers in Dallas later this week, both President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence are scheduled to appear at a Friday event, and because of that, a “survivor” of the Florida high school shooting in February has “called out” the organization for a ban on firearms in the hall where they will speak, The Hill reported.
But it’s not the NRA that did this. It’s the U.S. Secret Service. When the president and vice president are in a building, the Secret Service takes over. Elsewhere in the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, according to the NRA’s convention website, “During the 2018 NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits, lawfully carried firearms will be permitted in the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center and the Omni Dallas Hotel in accordance with Texas law. When carrying your firearm remember to follow all federal, state, and local laws.”
This has sparked a lively conversation on social media, exemplified by this exchange on the Connecticut Carry Facebook site.
The Dallas Morning News, in reporting the president’s appearance, explained, “Guns have been banned for Pence’s appearance and will be banned for Trump’s as well. It’s routine for the Secret Service to ban weapons at events attended by the president, though gun control advocates have mocked the ban, calling it hypocritical in light of the gun lobby’s push to allow guns in schools and to expand the rights of gun owners.”
Last year, when the president appeared at NRA’s convention in Atlanta, the same policy applied while guns were allowed in other parts of the building during the three-day weekend convention run. Several people in Atlanta observed that if there had been no firearms prohibition, Trump would still have been in the safest room in the United States.
NRA’s 147th annual meetings and exhibits are likely to attract tens of thousands of members from all over the country. Since the tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Feb. 14, the gun prohibition lobby has essentially hijacked a student-created movement for safer schools and turned the narrative into an attack on the NRA and gun owners and by default on other gun rights organizations, of which there are several. A former Supreme Court associated justice called for repeal of the Second Amendment. Two students from the high school have become media darlings, especially when criticizing NRA and calling for stricter gun control laws.
This is not the first time that anti-gunners have tried to mock NRA for allegedly prohibiting guns inside its annual exhibitions, nor is it the first time these critics have been proven wrong. It probably will not be the last, either.