A week after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that took the lives of 20 children and six faculty, the NRA held its highly anticipated press conference to address the mass violence that has struck the nation this year.
Executive vp Wayne LaPierre began by expressing his sympathy for the victims of the shooting but quickly shifted to a series of accusations against the media, Hollywood and video game industry, blaming them for contributing to a violent society.
LaPierre cited media outlets (and their corporate owners) that glorifies killers, movies that emphasize violence and video games that allow players to simulate mass murder. He called for the employment of armed guards at every school, saying it was a matter of having “good guys” in place to stop “bad guys.”
“I mean, we have blood-soaked films out there, like American Psycho, Natural Born Killers,” LaPierre said. “They’re aired like propaganda loops on Splatterdays and every single day.
“Thousands of music videos, and you all know this, portray life as a joke, and they play murder — portray murder as a way of life,” he continued. “And then they all have the nerve to call it entertainment. But is that what it really is? Isn’t fantasizing about killing people as a way to get your kicks really the filthiest form of pornography?”
The press conference was interrupted multiple times by protestors from the anti-war group Code Pink; two members ran in front of LaPierre and held up signs and called the NRA children killers.
In blaming the media, he said that news organizations spread false information about guns.
“Rather than face their own moral failings, the media demonize lawful gun owners, amplify their cries for more laws and fill the national media with misinformation and dishonest thinking that only delay meaningful action and all but guarantee that the next atrocity is only a news cycle away.”
The media reaction — LaPierre refused to take questions — flew on Twitter, nearly all of it incredulous and mocking.
“NRA’s Lapierre blames media, mentally ill, video games, Hollywood and media again. This absolutist script is tired,” Mediaite founder and former MSNBC host Dan Abrams wrote. Current MSNBC host Chris Hayes tweeted, “Useful reminder: The first person Adam Lanza murdered owned a bunch of guns.”
Michael Moore called it the “most deranged, delusional ‘press conference’ I’ve ever seen.”