After Columbine Shooting, NRA Supported Gun Free School Zones It Now Opposes

NRA Executive Vice President and CEO Wayne LaPierre

NRA Executive Vice President and CEO Wayne LaPierre

While the NRA has drawn widespread bipartisan criticism for its post-Newtown intransigence, its current opposition to virtually any gun safety measure also flies in the face of its positions from the late 1990s.

Days after the Columbine school shootings in 1999, the NRA made the controversial decision to hold its national convention in neighboring Denver, Colorado. At that convention, Executive Vice President and CEO Wayne LaPierre embraced some commonsense rules to prevent similar future tragedies.

1999 2013
Supported Gun Free Zones: “First, we believe in absolutely gun-free, zero-tolerance, totally safe schools. That means no guns in America’s schools, period … with the rare exception of law enforcement officers or trained security personnel. Opposes Gun Free Zones: “Politicians pass laws for Gun-Free School Zones. They issue press releases bragging about them. They post signs advertising them. And in so doing, they tell every insane killer in America that schools are their safest place to inflict maximum mayhem with minimum risk.
Open To Closing Gun Show Loophole: “We will consider instant checks at gun shows when, and only when, this Administration stops demanding new gun taxes and stops illegally compiling the records of millions of lawful gun buyers. Government list-keeping surveillance of law-abiding citizens is never a good idea.” Denies Loophole Exists: NRA-IL Executive Director Chris Cox: “To be sure, it`s not a ‘loophole,’ because FOPA made clear no license is required to make ‘occasional sales, exchanges or purchases of firearms for the enhancement of a personal collection or for a hobby,’ or to ‘[sell] all or part of [a] personal collection of firearms.'”

An estimated 40 percent of gun sales in the United States to occur without any criminal background check, thanks to the “gun-show” loophole.

The 1999 LaPierre assured the nation that the NRA believed felons “should get no guns any month.” The 2013 LaPierre seems to think that rather than taking steps to prevent felons from getting guns, the solution is to put more guns in schools and hope they can kill all of the shooters.