A gun-owning Dallas politician said he won’t support the National Rifle Association holding its annual convention in his city this year after last week’s Florida school shooting unless the group will discuss gun law reform.
“I have five guns,” Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway said Monday. “One in my car and one in every room in my house. But I’m saddened that every time we turn around we have some type of gun violence. Gun violence. When you look at what is being done — it’s absolutely nothing.”
Asking the NRA to reconsider Dallas for its convention “is putting our citizens first,” said Caraway, who emphasized his disdain for assault-style rifles like the one used by the Florida school killer. “Who needs an AR-15 to go hunting? Who needs an AR-15 to protect their house?”
Caraway zeroed in on President Donald Trump’s focus on mental health in the massacre, instead of addressing gun control.
“Yes, mental illness is an issue, but it’s not just an issue that should only be associated with guns,” Caraway said. “At the end of the day, we need to connect the dots. The NRA needs to step up to the plate and show leadership. Elected officials are receiving dollars from the NRA, and they’re afraid to set policy and to set necessary gun rules.”
NRA campaign funding is a point raised in recent days by students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where a gunman’s Feb. 14 rampage killed 17. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who holds an A+ rating from the NRA, received almost $10,000 from the group in the 2016 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
“To every politician who is taking donations from the NRA, shame on you!” Florida shooting survivor Emma Gonzalez said during a speech Saturday.
Children keep dying, added David Hogg, another Douglas student, because “politicians refuse to take action and continue to take money from the special interest groups.”
“All money is not good money,” Caraway said. “Children’s lives, citizens’ lives and people’s lives are greater than any dollar amount.”
Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, also incensed over last week’s horror, penned letters on Friday to Trump, as well as to Texas Sens. John Cornyn (R) and Ted Cruz (R), demanding that they work with Congress to create a commission on mass shootings.