NRA's Dana Loesch: "We absolutely do not" have responsibility to stop gun deaths

Dana Loesch told CNN's Alisyn Camerota that she doesn't think the NRA has a responsibility to fix the gun problem

By Matthew Rozsa

Published February 23, 2018 10:31AM (EST)

Dana Loesch (Jeff Malet Photography)
Dana Loesch (Jeff Malet Photography)

Dana Loesch, an NRA spokeswoman and conservative commentator, remained defiant as CNN's Alisyn Camerota pointed out that the NRA bears some responsibility to try to fix America's epidemic of gun violence.

"No, we absolutely do not," Loesch told Camerota. "We're parents too. We want to be able to make sure that our kids are also safe."

The NRA, which evolved from a sportsmen's club to an advocacy group for extreme right-wing positions in the 1970s, has pushed for a number of policies that have expanded access to guns and weakened restrictions that regulate firearms. As a result, the NRA has been criticized in many circles for the epidemic of mass shootings that has occurred in the United States, which had more mass shooting between 2000 and 2014 than the combined total from Australia, Canada, China, England, Finland, France, Germany, Mexico, Norway and Switzerland.

"I mean, we have Eddie Eagle programs," Loesch told Camerota when defending the NRA. "We have the school shield program wherein schools have been encouraged to adopt steps to keep them safer and to make sure that children feel safe. We've trained law enforcement officers. No other organization has trained more law enforcement officers than the NRA, thousands across the country. We have some members in the Broward County Sheriff's Department, by the way."

Loesch attracted criticism earlier this week when she implicitly blamed the mainstream media for mass shootings by claiming that they focus on them for the ratings.

"Many in legacy media love mass shootings. You guys love it. Now I'm not saying that you love the tragedy. But I am saying that you love the ratings. Crying white mothers are ratings gold to you and many in the legacy media in the back (of the room)," Loesch told CPAC on Thursday, according to CNN.

She added, "And notice I said 'crying white mothers' because there are thousands of grieving black mothers in Chicago every weekend, and you don't see town halls for them, do you? Where's the CNN town hall for Chicago? Where's the CNN town hall for sanctuary cities?"

Camerota addressed this accusation to Loesch.

"You think we love mass shootings?" Camerota asked Loesch. "It’s just malicious, actually, that you would say that. I don’t know anybody in the media who likes mass shootings… We pray that there’s never another one."

Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC.

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