As President Obama prepares to unveil his proposals to curb gun violence in the wake of the Sandy Hook massacre, the National Rifle Association is ratcheting up the tension over the White House's push for new gun-control measures. In a 35-second video released this week, the gun-rights group calls Obama an "elitist hypocrite" for saying he's "skeptical" about the NRA's call for armed guards in schools when his own daughters receive armed Secret Service protection. "Are the president's kids more important than yours?" the narrator asks.
Wow. "It takes a lot for the NRA to shock," says Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo. "But this is just beyond disgusting." There is no excuse for twisting the arguments against the president's positions in the gun debate into such a personal attack.
There are so many vile things about this ad. But one thing to note is the ad is really only designed to appeal to people who have a deep — really deep — animosity toward the president. The sort of people who don't think he and his daughters should be in the White House and wish him the sort of ill citizens should never wish upon a freely elected head of state. [Talking Points Memo]
Come on, the NRA is making a valid and effective point, says John Hinderaker at Power Line. The wealthy and powerful, especially when they happen to live in the White House, do believe armed security is a good idea, at least when they're not making a push to restrict gun rights.
Many people seem to be unaware that this is commonplace in upscale schools, and lots of downscale schools, too, where they think the threat comes from the students. Until recently, parents weren't shy about making sure their children were attending school in a safe environment. Why, all of a sudden, does the Democratic Party want to put our children (not theirs) at risk? [Power Line]
Get used to this kind of harsh rhetoric, says Philip Rucker at The Washington Post. The White House has had no immediate response to the ad, but both sides have plenty of Americans backing them up. In fact, a majority of Americans — 55 percent — support the NRA's proposal to try deterring school shootings by posting an armed guard in every school, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll. The NRA's "provocative" elitism charge — as harsh as any attack ad in a political campaign — "illustrates how emotionally charged and personal the debate over gun control is becoming."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How academia's liberal bias is killing social science
- Why Pakistan won't hunt down the terrorists within its borders
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Pope Francis' American problem
- Diagnosing the Home Alone burglars' injuries: A professional weighs in
- Sorry, GOP, tax cuts don't pay for themselves
- A brief history of the Christmas present
- 10 things you need to know today: December 20, 2014
Subscribe to the Week