It's that time of year again, it's GUN SEASON! Time for the NRA annual convention which will be held April 10-12 in Nashville, Tennessee. The ruby red state of Tennessee has gun laws among the most lax in the country. Just a few days after Sandy Hook, the state proposed a Guns In Trunks law, making it easier to carry weapons on school property, and it passed a half a year later.
The convention will host roughly 70,000 people who will converge on Nashville. The convention will be
the host of concerts, meetings, forums, auctions, breakfasts, children's activities and, of course, "16 acres of guns," according to an ad for the event. Over 400 exhibitors are competing for space within the 350,000-square-foot Music City Center.
The speaker list is strictly a who's who of the G.O.P. The speakers at NRA-ILA Leadership Forum include:
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, (and) Donald Trump.
Interestingly enough, the gun extravaganza has safety measures in place.
A multilevel security plan went into works not long after Nashville was chosen as the convention destination. All guns on the convention floor will be nonoperational, with the firing pins removed, and any guns purchased during the NRA convention will have to be picked up at a Federal Firearms License dealer, near where the purchaser lives, and will require a legal identification.
The NRA and the insatiable ammosexual, Wayne LaPierre, claim that the only thing that kills a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. If the answer to gun violence is more guns, then why not keep them all operational and ready? I'm sure this issue won't be addressed in Nashville.
Gun shows or conventions forbidding loaded weapons isn't a new phenomenon. It's just something they don't care to advertise as much as their Second Amendment remedies. The Silver State (NV) has many residents who simply love guns, many of them who identify with the Mormon Church. They are against any laws restricting their rights to purchase deadly weapons. Senator Mike Lee (R) of Utah, recently proposed an amendment to prevent federal gun control laws.
Nevada borders Utah, a state with the second highest per capita gun ownership in the country. Not surprisingly, some of the gun dealers aren't exactly model citizens. For example, the Templeton family, who operate the 47 shows-per-year Crossroads Gunshow, is not exactly what one might consider a virtuous bunch.
In 2002, Crossroads VP Jeffrey Templeton called the police after hearing a suspicious noise outside his house. The police found more than just a suspected prowler, as this report states. The indictment lists 57 firearms confiscated at the home by agents with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and Kaysville police on Dec. 11. The discovery was made after someone at the Templetons’ home in Kaysville called police to report something suspicious, possibly a burglar or prowler. But when Kaysville police arrived, they spotted a slew of weapons with illegal drugs nearby, said Kaysville Police Chief Dave Helquist. He said the drugs appeared to be methamphetamine and are being tested.
The Templeton family continues to own and operate the lucrative gun show to this day.
We know that these gun shows are where straw purchasers do much of their business. It's among the worst in the state where the NRA convention will be held, in addition to my state of Nevada.
A 2009 undercover investigation by the City of New York at gun shows in Nevada, Ohio, and Tennessee “observed many private sellers doing brisk business at gun shows.”The investigators tested whether firearms dealers and private sellers would conduct what appeared to be illegal transactions, and found that:
When investigators claimed that they “probably” could not pass background checks, 19 of 30 private sellers (63%) were still willing to complete the firearm sale;and
When investigators approached licensed dealers and appeared to conduct straw purchases on behalf of prohibited people, 16 of 17 dealers (94%) were willing to complete these transactions.
In a subsequent investigation – conducted at a Phoenix gun show just a few weeks after the Tucson massacre – an investigator successfully purchased guns from two private sellers despite informing both that he “probably couldn’t pass” a background check.
This convention of death merchants and the "patriots" who love them is largely used by right wing G.O.P. hopefuls to show their Second Amendment bona fides. The fact the operators of said show know the risks of unfettered gun possession, truly demonstrates the hypocrisy of gun manufacturers and sellers. The glorification of this industry is just a reminder of how Republican ammosexuals value profit over the pursuit of happiness and human life.