When the NRA distances itself from you for going too far in advocating for gun rights, you know you’ve really gone too far. That’s exactly what happened to Donald Trump over the weekend, as he has been quite vocal about the assertion that the Orlando shooting could have been stopped if more people in the nightclub had been carrying guns.
“If some of those wonderful people had guns strapped right here, right to their waist or right to their ankle, and this son of a bitch comes out and starts shooting and one of the people in that room happened to have it and goes boom, boom. You know what, that would’ve been a beautiful, beautiful sight, folks,” Trump said Friday night, gleefully describing the violent death of a human being as a “beautiful, beautiful sight.”
Earlier in the week Trump opined that “it’s too bad some of the people killed over the weekend didn’t have guns attached to their hips where bullets could have thrown in the opposite direction. Had people been able to fire back it would have been a much different outcome.” It seems clear that Donald Trump is recklessly advocating that citizens arm themselves when going to a nightclub where drugs and alcohol are very likely to be consumed.
A top NRA spokesman distanced the rabidly pro-gun lobby from Trump’s statements, saying “No one thinks that people should go into a nightclub drinking and carrying firearms. That defies common sense. It also defies the law.” No one, that is, except for Donald Trump, who has repeatedly and vigorously suggested that very thing.
Perhaps realizing that he was recommending that his supporters break the law (as about half of US states ban or restrict loaded weapons in places that serve alcohol), Trump didn’t apologize and restate his intent. He “clarified” his statements this morning on Twitter in such a way that he was not wrong, but perhaps the dishonest media misunderstood him:
We’re not stupid, Donald Trump. You didn’t “obviously” mean additional security guards. You meant “some of those wonderful people” or “one of the people in the room” or “some of the people killed” because that is what you said, never mentioning security guards or or other trained, presumably sober, personnel. You obviously advocated that private citizens should take a loaded gun to a nightclub where presumably drinking is happening so that you can protect yourself from the infinitesimal chance that a mass shooting will happen that night, and endangering the safety of every person in that bar.