When most gun owners and Second Amendment advocates hear about a person using a firearm to protect themselves from nearly certain injury or death at the hands of a violent criminal, they consider it to be a positive thing. In contrast, many on the other side of the Second Amendment debate tend to think that a person saving their own life and the lives of others is automatically a bad thing.
Such is the case with Shannon Watts, head of the anti-gun group Moms Demand Action. An example from September 9 makes the point.
In Channelview, Texas, a woman, a 12-year-old boy, and two 17-year-old boys were at home when, around 10:40 a.m., three armed men wearing masks forced their way into the house. According to local media, one of the 17-year-old boys grabbed a shotgun and fired at the intruders. Two of the armed criminals died at the scene, while the third fled the home.
How that outcome sounds to someone apparently has to do with how you value innocent human life compared to the lives of violent criminals. The National Rifle Association later tweeted a quote from a local sheriff involved in the case: “‘Three adult males attempted to force entry into a home. The males were armed and wearing masks. One of the 17yo male occupants retrieved a shotgun and discharged it several times, striking two of the suspects. Both males were pronounce dead at the scene.’ @SheriffEd_HSCO”
Watts, in response, tweeted: “That the NRA is celebrating a CHILD being forced to shoot and kill the two intruders their organization helped arm is f@#$%ing sick.”
Disregarding the fact that NRA simply reported what happened, and we have been doing the same thing for decades in the Armed Citizen column of NRA magazines, does she think the NRA, a civil-rights organization, armed the masked intruders? Could it be that she has never looked at an NRA publication, never seen all of the quotes from NRA officials in the media calling for criminals to be disarmed, caught, prosecuted, and locked up, and is completely unaware of the NRA’s lobbying for legislation to focus our resources on criminals, not lawfully armed citizens? She can’t be that daft. So then, is it that she is hoping enough people won’t know the truth and so will fall for her fake narrative? Likely.
That said, Watts’ statement simply aligns with her politics. But, though that is her opinion, it doesn’t make it right, or even honest. As America is, thankfully, still a society with a robust First Amendment protected right to free speech, it is both possible and critical for others to call out false speech. If such a debate is left open—as in, people aren’t cancelled or shadow banned for their politics—the American people can then come to balanced conclusions. They can then vote their educated opinions.
In this case, Watts’ expletive and her narrative was crass, dishonest, and very provably untrue.
Here is just one recent example of what the NRA has to say about armed citizens and those who break our laws.
In this particular case, any reasonable person must agree it was fortunate that the armed citizens in this house in Texas had a firearm, and that a 17-year-old boy knew how to use the shotgun properly. Otherwise, the result could have been five innocent people killed. If that happened, Watts would have still likely used the incident to promote her anti-gun views, but this time, by exploiting crime victims who lost their lives, rather than seemingly lamenting that they defended them.