- Title: USA: NRA head defends call for armed school guards
- Date: 23rd December 2012
- Summary: CHANTILLY, VIRGINIA, UNITED STATES (RECENT - DECEMBER 18, 2012) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF MAN SHOOTING AR-15 STYLE ASSAULT RIFLE AT GUN RANGE
- Embargoed: 7th January 2013 12:00
- Location: Usa
- Country: USA
- Reuters ID: LVABL7WM94OLM0VZ5F4V2BZZY22G
- Story Text: National Rifle Association Chief Executive Wayne LaPierre defended the NRA's call for armed school guards on Sunday (December 23) during a weekly news program.
"If its crazy to call for putting police and armed security in our schools to protect our children, then call me crazy. I'll tell you, the American people, I think the American people think its crazy not to do it. It's the one thing that would keep people safe and the NRA is going to try to do that," he said on "Meet The Press."
Twenty students 20 students, all 6 or 7 years old, and six adults killed by a gunman who opened fire with a semi-automatic assault rifle on December 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.
The slaughter of so many young children has rekindled fierce debate about U.S. gun laws. Some lawmakers called for swift passage of an assault-weapons ban and President Barack Obama commissioned a task force to find a way to quell violence, a challenge in a nation with a strong culture of gun ownership.
LaPierre said new regulations would not work, but tougher law enforcement would.
"Look a gun is a tool. The problem is the criminal. Every police officer that walks the street knows that if you want to control violent crime, take violent criminals off the street," he said.
The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms and hundreds of millions of weapons are in private hands.
The right is closely guarded by gun advocates, even though about 11,100 Americans died in gun-related killings in 2011, not including suicides, according to preliminary data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"You know, the American people, I know one thing about them - they value their freedom. When the reality of the consequences of what the politicians in this town and the media and the elites want to do to their second amendment rights and take them away, I think they'll do what they've done historically, they'll defend the freedom," said LaPierre.
In the Newtown shootings, the gunman used a military-style rifle and carried two handguns that were legally registered to his mother, who Lanza shot and killed before the massacre.
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