NRA Calls Obama ‘Elitist Hypocrite’ in New Ad
The NRA is calling President Obama an "elitist hypocrite" for opposing armed guards in schools while sending his own girls to school with armed guards.
The NRA is calling President Obama an “elitist hypocrite” for opposing armed guards in schools while sending his own girls to school with armed guards.
CNN (“NRA airs new TV ad criticizing Obama on eve of White House gun announcement“):
The National Rifle Association released a new television commercial Tuesday night charging President Barack Obama of hypocrisy for being “skeptical” about placing armed guards at schools, while his own two daughters are protected by the U.S. Secret Service.
“Are the president’s kids more important than yours?” a narrator says in the 30 second ad. “Then why is he skeptical about putting armed security in our schools, when his kids are protected by armed guards at their school.”
The commercial is running on the Sportsman Channel, a cable network focused on outdoors programming such as hunting and fishing. It is also posted on a dedicated web site “Stand and Fight.”
On Wednesday, Obama is set to unveil a new set of proposals that would place very tough restrictions on the ownership and sale of firearms.
In the ad, the narrator only mentions Obama by name, but it also features images of Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and NBC anchor David Gregory. Bloomberg is an influential voice in favor of stricter gun laws and has dipped into his personal fortune to help fund a lobby campaign, and Feinstein, a California Democrat, is helping spearhead a congressional effort to enforce tougher gun laws.
Gregory questioned NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre in a December interview about the effectiveness of the organization’s proposal to put armed guards in schools. After the interview, the NRA and conservative media outlets noted that Gregory’s children attended the same school as Obama’s daughters and the school has a security department.
“Mr. Obama demands the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes,” the narrator says. “But he is just another elitist hypocrite when it comes to a fair share of security. Protection for their kids and gun-free zones for ours.”
Here’s the ad:
The “Morning Joe” gang was apoplectic about the ad, with both Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski calling it disgusting and out of bounds. They’re wrong.
Now, I think the ad’s argument is silly. The president and his family have unique security requirements. It’s hardly hypocritical for Obama to send his girls to school protected by the finest protective detail in the world while opposing having poorly trained armed guards at the thousands of other schools out there. Generally speaking, not only is the security threat at schools quite low but the dangers of having loaded weapons there enhance rather than lower the risk of violence.
But the ad’s neither tasteless nor over the line. The Obama girls’ faces aren’t shown and there’s certainly no suggestion that they shouldn’t be protected; indeed, the ad advocates that all kids deserve the same kind of protection.
Beyond that, there’s a kernel of truth in the “elitist hypocrite” argument, even if it’s poorly articulated here. The fact of the matter is that a lot of liberal politicians and celebrities who are vocal on the need for gun control and who poo-poo the notion that Americans need to be armed to protect themselves and their families who nonetheless avail themselves of armed bodyguards. As with the president, there may be a legitimate case for a distinction—a US Senator or an actress is simply more likely to be a target than most of us—but the optics are indeed strange.
No, but they sure are a more likely target.
Other than that… I grudgingly agree with you James.
And those girls get to ride on that cool private plane and live in that great big house too! Why are they so special??? Really, this is just to distract from the real issues and rile up the base of Obama haters who already think he doesn’t deserve the presidency and all that goes with it. How can you have a serious conversation with these people?
What’s funny about this sort of thing — in the vein of a dark comedy farce — is that as much as the left is a collection of elitist hypocrites on guns (loopy Hollywood actors with armed bodyguards provide a particularly rich tapestry of ironies) the fact of the matter is that guns are not even the arena in which they’re the most hypocritical or the most elitist.
Take taxes. For as many wealthy “anti-gun” leftists who themselves have conceal and carry permits or armed bodyguards a much higher percentage of wealthy leftists have expensive tax accountants or attorneys, offshore tax shelters, generation skipping trusts, tax-advantaged mutual funds, unrealized appreciation, 1031 exchange vehicles, etc. Shit, getting a wealthy liberal to pay more taxes is like trying to sandpaper a Bobcat’s arse in a phone booth. Good luck.
Then take gentrification. Have you ever been to some of those wealthy neighborhoods in liberal enclaves? Pacific Heights. Malibu. Marin County. The gentrification is so extreme it’ll make your head spin. But of course the sheer irony is lost on rich, elitist liberals.
Public schools. Liberals “support them.” They’re against school vouchers. They’re against charter schools. They back the public teachers unions. You bet’cha. And literally 100% of wealthy liberals send their kids to private schools. Again, the irony is lost on them.
The list goes on and on.
In any event, getting back to guns, Obama’s not so much an “elitist hypocrite” as he is gaming his own wealthy and loopy base for campaign money for the Democrat Party and firing up other elements of the Dems’ base. Obama’s from Chicago and he’s a smart guy whose seen that city’s seedier side. Deep down he knows that “gun control” does nothing but pile up bodies of gunshot victims, largely in the inner cities. But in left-wing politics it’s essential “never to let a crisis go to waste.” And Obama is a master politician.
The NRA wants to expand the mission of the Secret Service to include the guarding of every school age child in America? Really? How are we gonna pay for that?
Sidwell Friends has a private security force on campus unconnected to the Secret Service. Indeed, it pre-dated the Obama daughters attendance at the school. This is obviously what they are referring to.
The NRA has gone way too far with this AD. They are completely removed from the mainstream..My husband has been a member of the NRA for 18 plus years…He is DISSOLVING his membership….
The NRA is in their own little world, and as far as I am converned they can stay there….
“We are having a major PR crisis here! Let’s bring the Presidents kids into it!”
-Wayne LaPierre. Probably.
(as seen on twitter–didn’t want to take credit on what is not mine)
The administration and the liberal elite are not going to prevent a local school district from using armed security in their buildings. They are not trying to prevent individuals from having firearms in their homes. They will also not prevent states and local districts from using vouchers, Tsar Nick, see how well that’s going in Louisiana where you can send your kids to a school where they show the Flintstones as a documentary.
The point of the ad is to infuriate those who advocate for stricter gun regulations.
This will then result in bringing wavering NRA boosters back into the fold, as they have been conditioned for the past 30 years to dramatically oppose literally anything popular with liberals.
(btw, if this was an ad mentioning a Republican politician’s children, the Fox/talkradio jocks would scream themselves hoarse)
How much does it cost to send a child there? As I understand it, a lot of high profile people send their children there and most if not all are at high risk for nefarious deeds, hence the security. Also, I rather suspect the Secret Service does not just drop the girls off. Don’t know it of course, but they are responsible for the security of the President and his family, I kind of doubt they allow others to take over for them. No matter how good they might be.
There is another problem. Living around armed security is annoying. The security guards may be nice and professional people, but their own presence is enough to make you nervous. I know that, because here in Brazil you´ll find plenty of them in anywhere where you supposedly will find people with higher income.
According to Wiki: Tuition for the 2010-2011 school year is $31,069 (prekindergarten-grade 4) and $32,069 (grades 5-12)
Sidwell Friends has a staff of 11 guards…not suprising considering young Clintons, Nixons, and Roosevelts have gone there…not to mention countless diplomats, Government officials, and celebrities…in other words special threats…and I’m sure there is a high level of training and coordination with the Secret Service.
Is the NRA advocating this level of expenditure and comittment at every school in the country?
Because that would fall under discretionary spending which Republicans want to slash by 20%…(see Ryan budget, Romney campaign). Let’s see Sidwell’s budget and then ask the Republicans who refused to fund disater relief for Superstorm Sandy if they want to support the funding required.
The reasons that Sidwell Friends has armed guards…and the guard-in-every-school idea is stupid should be self-evident.
I’m sure the fringe gun nuts are incapable of discerning it.
Please provide a link for this.
Otherwise STFU…because you are once again full of shit.
Personally, if I had the time or the inclination, I’d put together a counter ad pointing out that Ted Nugent concerts don’t allow people to bring guns in (including concealed carry) and often have metal detectors to make sure that people don’t violate that rule.
Considering the Nug’s strongly stated beliefs that guns make people safer and that if a mass shooting was to break out, the only hope of “sheeple” are good people with guns, it seems somewhat hypocritical that he’d be disarming the sheepdogs, and making them rely on his security, in a situation that’s a mass shooting waiting to happen.
(I wish I could claim this was originally my idea, but I got the basic premise from someone else).
I do enjoy the fact that the same people who rage against the TSA now want stop-and-frisk at every school in the country, and the same people who despise the ACA now want a federalized mental health regime, and the same people who become apoplectic at “political correctness” now seem to suggest censorship of TV, movies and video games.
But like I’ve been saying, arguing for the gun cult makes people stupid.
Actually…the murder rate with gun contro in Chicago is 17% lower…so again…you are full of shit.
If you have to resort to lies to make your point…it just ain’t much of a point in the first place.
I think this armed guards in school thing might actually be a tipping point for the gun fetishists. I mean, you’ve got to be really, really, REALLY stupid to not see the next step in the argument. If we need armed guards in schools…what about public libraries? Malls? Movie theaters? Office buildings? Bars? Gas stations? The obvious and near inevitable end point of having an armed government agent on every street corner might just be enough to break the spell.
@Rob in CT: We agree on that point, too—I make it in the post!
@michael reynolds: Yes, it’s just dumb. I don’t defend the quality of the argument, just the rebut the notion that it’s somehow tasteless or anti-Obama girls.
Whether or not the ad makes an argument that is intellectually respectable is not what makes it disgusting or out of bounds. What makes it disgusting and out of bounds is that it is inherently dangerous to use the President’s daughters for this purpose. All it takes is one nutjob.
Well, let’s see… hmmm… he is the elected leader of these United States, and the de facto leader of the free world…
So, yeah. I think “elite” would be vaild in this case.
I would say that is a pretty rarified group.
What often makes me smile is that those who usually use this as a criticism… well, not so elite.
Usually outstanding underachievers.
But hey, let’s not let logic get in the way of a mudslinging attempt.
Just another day for the proud, misguided conservative leadership.
Sorry. I knew that, but phrased my post badly. I’m a little sloppy this morning (didn’t sleep well). I was disagreeing with the NRA, and agreeing with you. Fully, 100% wrt to that particular point, and, like I said, grudgingly on the rest of your argument (re: “over the line” or not).
That’s a ridiculous assertion. Even from you.
How much of the resistance to firearm regulation is a result of users who just don’t want anything to stand between them having fun shooting their weapons? The link target from yesterday on a bump modification spilled thousands of pixels over how much fun it was to fire, just push smoothly for automatic fire.
Time to stop pretending it’s about protection when it’s mostly about recreation.
Does the fact that the president and his children are regularly the target of assassination threats cross your mind when you refer to him as an elitist hypocrite? It would be extremely profitable for the NRA if every citizen believed they were under the same constant threat of violence as the president, but it’s dangerous for the rest of us to go along with it.
I’m not happy defending Doug…but I’m pretty sure he is right.
Oh, please. I grew up with armed bodyguards myself when I was a kid living in the Third World. You know why? Because people would call my parents and threaten to kidnap me or kill me.
Nevertheless, I don’t walk around with armed bodyguards as an adult in the US. You know why? Because no one is threatening to kidnap or kill me. There’s a world of difference between someone who’s an active, high-profile target who gets specific threats directed at them by name, and someone who just kinda sorta feels unsafe but who has never actually been threatened in their life.
And like I’ve been saying, most of them were already stupid.
Even just keeping it to schools …what about after-school programs? Team practices? Theatre practice? Field trips? Weekend detention? And what about pre-school? Playgroups? Mommy-Baby Yoga?
Well, you’re wrong. It’s inherently tasteless — beneath contempt, actually — to bring the President’s daughters into this. And you’d have to be spectacularly naive not to realize that the NRA put out this ad specifically to give offense.
I agree with Josh Marshall:
“There are so many vile things about this ad. But one thing to note is the ad is really only designed to appeal to people who have a deep — really deep — animosity toward the President. The sort of people who don’t think he and his daughters should be in the White House and wish him the sort of ill citizens should never wish upon a freely elected head of state. “
“I am the NRA”–Timothy McVeigh.
Nope. If so, the ad copy would have said something to the order of “Obama sends his daughters to a school that has provided armed security for its students for the past x years”.
It is idiotic because the question does not revolve around the Obama family. As was widely reported following Sandy Hook:
1/3 of schools already have armed guards or police
Obama and “the liberals” are not removing those. They are just arguing for a different focus going forward. Rather than arming the remaining 2/3, they’d address the violence.
And certainly no where to they restrict the 2/3 NOT to add security staff.
I could not agree more. “Obviously”.
How is calling the President “Mr. Obama” and an “elitist hypocrite” and then invoking safety measures for the President’s family as an example of said character defect not tasteless?
This is pure Obamahatred from the bowels of the cultural right.
I mean, this fails at the level of math.
1/3 of schools have armed guards. Obama’s school has armed guards.
Those are impossible odds, right? Elitism?
(Jeez James, really?)
I would actually argue the answer to this question is yes. If they were killed or abducted, I’m pretty sure the President would be distracted. That affects the whole country if not the whole world.
… not to mention if they were kidnapped by a foreign entity, it would be an international incident possibly causing ware …
“war”, that is
Teachers have been allowed to carry concealed in Utah for over a decade. There have been no accidental discharges, kids getting the gun, gun left unattended, etc. Further, there have been no shootings.
“opposing having poorly trained armed guards”
Is a pretty broad assumption and generalization.
Why would the ad say that? It undermines the point of the ad. You aren’t accusing the NRA of being truthful are you?
Sidwell Friends had armed security guards long before the Obama girls.
NRA – Defending Criminals since 1977.
That SHOULD be their tag line because the current NRA is not your father’s, or grandfather’s NRA.
I’m waiting for LaPierre’s apology: “We’re sorry we called the president an elitist hypocrite. We meant to say he’s an uppity ni**er.”
And there’s a world of difference between a school guard or Secret Serviceman having a semiautomatic weapon, and Nancy Lanza having a semiautomatic weapon.
There is zero logic to this ad, or the political party dependent on the advertiser’s support. It’s just pure animus.
@michael reynolds: I think the webcomic Penny Arcade put it best in response to what the NRA had said: “It is a very odd sort of Patriot that would destroy the First Amendment to protect the Second.”
In the big picture? Yes. The safety of the first family is a national security issue. Just as it was when Bush was President.
I’m aware of that. What I said was that Doug’s assertion that the NRA was “obviously” referring to that is bs.
You should probably throw “bizarre” into the mix for good luck. Then you will have really and truly lobbed the marshmallow du jour at the crazy ass majority in your party.
The point of this ad is to put the idea of killing the Obama girls into gun nuts heads, because such things make them buy more guns. Just like everything the NRA ever does, with all it’s decades-long nonsense talk about government gun grabbers that don’t exist, is meant to scare gun nuts into buying more guns. That is why the NRA exists. To boost gun sales and protect gun manufacturers from any action that might reduce gun sales.
But the ad’s neither tasteless nor over the line.
You only say that because you don’t think like a gun nut, and the ad isn’t talking about your daughters. If it was, you’d think differently.
you’ve lost me…what, then, is the ad refering to?
Shorter NRA – the President is an uppity black guy. Longer NRA – the President’s kids have armed security at their school (and everywhere else, for that matter); why shouldn’t everyone? The ad copy would have been exactly the same if Sasha and Malia had been attending a school which heretofore had NOT had armed guards.
Again, my point is that I very much doubt that the NRA even knew of Sidwell Friends’ history in that regard, let alone was “obviously” referring to it.
@Franklin: A downvote for this? I’d like to hear the argument that the President’s kids are not more important than anybody else’s.
So let’s review. Right to attend a good school with armed security is okay as long as you are part of the 1% and can pay. The rest, especially the inner-city black child, are condemned to failing schools racked with violence unprotected from external threats because their parents having a choice where their kids attend school would be bad for Liberals?
The ad did muddle their message since so many are jumping on the secret service bandwagon when in total, the point is Obama sends his kids, with personal bodyguards, to a school with armed security.
I do like the argument that those with armed guards are special and not like other people’s kids who are fine with a sign saying “gun-free school zone” and a cop 10-20 minutes away. Nice, special privilege for specially connected.
We see the Progs are all about the 1% but also about ensuring the 99% don’t improve themselves through individual initiative. One wonders why they must work to keep everyone down. Perhaps they’re insecure in their position in the Party?
No one is begrudging the President’s kids their secret service detail. But why the active attempts to stop other parents from implementing armed security for their kids. The laws seek to prevent any efforts for parents to secure their children.
I dunno. I’d be in favor of professional armed guards at every school and public place-so long as the guards were paid for by a special tax on all gun owners.
Can we get an agreement on that? Somehow, I suspect no.
@JKBh: The president is also giving the launch codes for nuclear missiles in case he feels he needs to use them to protect the nation. Why shouldn’t every citizen be given those launch codes? Why are liberals so elitist?
My daughter’s high school was a “gun free school zone” too but the resource officers there were armed police officers. I think you may have some confusion about how that term is applied. (I never had any illusions that a few armed officers could prevent anything at a school with over 4000 students situated on a 10 acre campus.) As a matter of fact, our DMV has a sign stating that it’s a gun free zone and no concealed weapons are allowed but the metal detector at the entrance is manned by armed security.
So let’s say at least three guards per place, at two shifts a day, that’s six guards total, plus one to cover weekends and vacations, times how many “public places” (schools, malls, offices, stores, churches, mosques, synagogues, temples, apartment buildings, parks, etc.) there are in the US — at least two million? So that’s about 14 million armed guards, which is seven times the number of active duty soldiers in the US Army, and is also equal to about 5% of the total US population.
Hell, I’m all for it — a millions strong extra-military federalized armed force, answerable directly to President Obama. It’s just what the right wing has been pushing for all along, isn’t it?
@OzarkHillbilly: “How are we gonna pay for that? ”
Don’t we just raise the debt ceiling? 🙂
Your cut & run from the thread yesterday is noted.
JKB is a great one for making claims when he has no clue what he is talking about. Yes JKB, I am referring to your comments on mental health and “socialism”…
@Doug Mataconis: “Sidwell Friends has a private security force on campus unconnected to the Secret Service. Indeed, it pre-dated the Obama daughters attendance at the school. This is obviously what they are referring to.”
You are Pissing on our legs and telling us it’s raining, Doug.
Chelasea Clinton went there, so having such security would obviousy pre-date the Obama administration. I imagine the count of high profile children there wpuld be large.
Roughly 1/3 of the schools in the nation have armed guards.
As usual you are full of shit.
I’ll up the ante with pretty much anything he writes about higher ed.
That said, to give credit where it’s due, when JKB is writing about certain gun topics — in particular the parameters for their use in personal self defense — he’s pretty good.
Perhaps you could show where anyone claimed there is a “right” involved.
Rich, well connected people get things that other people do not. Reality 101.
Actually, I am a little surprised to see you take this tack, since the position of the right tends to be that the 1% are claiming the just rewards of success and wealth when they enjoy things that are not available to the majority of the populace, and that to claim otherwise is “success envy.”
At any rate, your crocodile tears for kids in inner city schools are noted.
Don’t we just raise the debt ceiling? 🙂
Raising the debt ceiling doesn’t doesn’t authorize spending.
@mantis: Sure it does, just ask the GOP. 🙂
@James Joyner: How is it not hypocritical that the same political the NRA funds to get elected can sit inside their gun free capitol complex. Where is the NRA calling out all of the GOP congressmen who call for all guns all the time. How dare these hypocritical Texas elitists tell me my conceal carry permit doesn’t allow my gun to enter courthouses, federal buildings, or the capitol? More guns is always the answer when will the federal government end these needless regulations to their safety. I don’t have the right to work in a gun free work place, why should they? Oh right, they called for my workplace to allow concealed weapons I just lack the ability to do the same unto them. Bunch of NRA elitist hypocrites.
Personally, I would feel better about the safety of the nation (not just our schoolchildren) if Congress and every state legislature allowed concealed carry on the floor during debates. I seem to remember that after a whack job tried to shoot his way into the U.S. Capitol a few years back, Congress decided that tightening up its own security was Job # 1.
@Dave: This. Let Congress allow concealed carry in its hallowed halls. Why should it miss out on living in the Wild, Wild West?
The NRA is both stupid and powerful (those two attributes are not mutually exclusive).
As if there is no overriding security reason to protect ANY president and his/her family.
Gun violence in this country is a supply-side problem.
Supply the people with a lot of weaponry and it’s not hard to understand why we have a lot of gun violence. What else would anyone expect when a nation of 315M people and 275M guns are put together? Add to that a strong cult of gun ownership and you have the conditions for regular periodic mass shootings, mass killings and homicides. And this isn’t going to change any time soon, because we are not interested in reducing the supply of armaments to the people.
A couple of years ago I was at a public park in San Francisco, I was waiting for a couple of friends to meet me, and a guy sitting near me on a bench near me had his jacket swing open briefly and I noticed a revolver tucked in his pants near his belt. At that moment I did not feel safer, I felt that nothing good could result from waiting at a spot near him. I immediately moved.
The law prevent “any efforts” (some of which may have nothing to do with guns, for example a limited number of unlocked doors at the school)? And also the law prevents “armed security”?
If these are true, that’s indeed outrageous. But that’s not my understanding.
According to some reader of Andrew Sullivan’s blog, Sidwell’s security crew is unarmed.
@ Steve V….
Just saw that myself.
I’m sure the NRA will issue a correction.
As usual, JKB is making things up. When he gets called on it, he does a cut and run to the next thread.
From Andrew Sullivan referenced above:
Of course the gun tucked into one’s pants is the safest thing possible. See: Burress, Plaxico, & any number of other incidents.
@michael reynolds: Thanks for posting that, Michael. Always nice to have information from a primary source.