The politics of gun control are shifting in America, MSNBC chief legal correspondent Ari Melber reported on Thursday.
The host of “The Beat” on MSNBC reported on the outreach by the Parkland students since they survived the massacre of their school.
“Those activists think it’s working, the NRA has run a deficit for three years,” Melber noted. “And even if this may be a bit of a scare tactic, their chief sent a fund-raising letter saying they could shutter pretty soon if they don’t get more money. A representative representing Sandy Hook families is teeing up part of the answer. Basically, they say if the gun measures are now popular, why don’t politicians want to do something popular?”
The host played a clip from Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT).
“The NRA is weaker today, not because they’re having this infighting at the board level but because they’re hemorrhaging members. They don’t have as many dues-paying members as they used to,” Murphy said. “Corporations won’t sponsor them and the board is in trouble because they don’t have the cash to sort of grease the executive wheels like they used to.”
Melber gave his analysis.
“The NRA may want you to think this is all hopeless and that talking gun control after a shooting is politicizing it. Those advocates want you to think there is hope for change and it comes by confronting NRA and its money and pushing gun control at times like this, even if part of the American public understandably says I don’t even want to hear about it anymore,” Melber explained.
The host played clips of politicians echoing the NRA talking point about not politicizing tragedies.
“Not the time. Gun control advocates have been pressing their effort to prove that talking point is a demoralizing trick. After a terror attack, we do talk about how to prevent the next one. After a plane crash, we talk about safety. After these recurring shootings for decades, many were told we shouldn’t talk about solutions, at least not immediately,” he reported.
“So taken together, what are the lessons? First, in a working democracy, popular solutions to major, deadly problems tend to get enacted. In a distorted democracy, even popular solutions can clearly be thwarted,” Melber said.
“Second, the people trying to convince you this week that nothing will ever change may have a reason. They don’t want things to change because the history you just saw shows Congress has toughened gun safety rules before and banned assault weapons in a time where there were fewer shootings,” he noted.
“And finally, when we often know as part of our reporting to you there are certainly legitimate debates here how to do this and what to do, this long-standing anti-democratic attempt to tell people to tell you you can’t discuss policy after your town or school or your friend’s town is shot up, that’s clearly ending as people in states red and blue say no, they’re going to talk about this right now,” Melber said. “They’re going to fight for this right now because they’re hurting right now and for many because they want to do something right now.”
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