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Eisenhower writes: "Any thinking person has to be disgusted by the National Rifle Association ad released Wednesday, suggesting that the president is an 'elitist hypocrite.'"

The NRA has 4 million members and annual revenues of $228 million. (photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
The NRA has 4 million members and annual revenues of $228 million. (photo: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

The NRA's Diabolical Ad

By Susan Eisenhower, The Washington Post

18 January 13


n 2008, just after Barack Obama was elected president, I gave a television interview regarding what the Obamas might expect on becoming the new first family. I was asked specifically how Malia and Sasha's lives would change. For a start, I said, they won't play outside anymore without armed guards.

I know something about that. For the eight years that my grandfather, Dwight Eisenhower, was president of the United States, I had Secret Service protection. Known as the "Diaper Detail," these armed agents protected my sisters, brother and me from potential kidnappings or other targeted attacks. Such threats might be aimed at hurting us, but they would also strike a devastating blow to the president and possibly our national security.

I repeat: We had Secret Service protection because we were seen as potential targets.

That's why any thinking person has to be disgusted by the National Rifle Association ad released Wednesday, suggesting that the president is an "elitist hypocrite" because his children have the benefit of armed protection at school and the nation's children as a whole do not. This is absurd. The nation's children are not individually at risk the way the Obama children are.

And the Obama girls are not exactly lucky to have a protection detail. How lucky is it to grow up with a loss of privacy and freedom, along with the psychological effects of a childhood shadowed by armed bodyguards? As sensitive, respectful and kind as these agents are, having Secret Service protection is part of the sacrifice that presidential families make in the name of public service. Those who have had armed protection can suffer lifelong feelings of physical vulnerability, a sense that he or she is always being watched, or a longing for the feeling of continued dependency and security. I am fortunate to have gotten over these issues. But it is no surprise when someone falls for her security guard. Of my generation, the most famous of these was Patty Hearst, the kidnapped newspaper heiress who eventually married her bodyguard.

Having armed guards at school, even for part of the day, is not the environment we should wish for America's children, nor does it foster a tension-free educational experience. So let's turn the national conversation back to how we can make our schools safer without creating fear and anxiety.

The NRA's attack ad should be condemned for exacerbating the dangers faced by the president and his family. Regrettably, it is emblematic of a new trend in public policy and communications strategy. Instead of arguing the merits of an issue, broader public questions are spun into personal attacks. In this case, the NRA has tried to assure the public that the argument is not about guns anymore but about some negative personal image it has concocted for the president. At the end of the ad, a voice intones, "President Obama demands that Americans pay their fair share of taxes, but he's just another elitist hypocrite when it comes to a fair share of security."

This brilliantly diabolical non sequitur hurts more than the president and his family. It hurts our democracy by twisting the nature of the public debate.

Even a longtime Washingtonian such as I thought these ads couldn't get worse. So I have a question for the NRA and others who use such tactics: Have you no sense of decency, sirs? your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

-340 # cordleycoit 2013-01-18 11:52
Of course one protects the children of presidents. But you expect the President to be forth coming about his past. This president has no personal history and yet he gets to toy with the Constitution. And if people challenge him the monkey see no evil press leaps on the questioner like they were criminals for asking simple questions. This President seems to be pushing for a Civil War rather than workable solutions.
+151 # Merschrod 2013-01-18 12:08
Stick to the subject Cordley!
+168 # Merschrod 2013-01-18 12:09
Nice background Susan and well stated. I often wondered how all of the children coped with the context. Thank you for putting it all into perspective.
+52 # Nominae 2013-01-18 15:25
@ Merschrod

Indeed, I echo Merschrod on this one.

Thank you Ms. Eisenhower for calling these cowards out. They are NOT going to argue the merits of the issue, simply because it is too ridiculous to be logically defended. They are fully aware of this fact.

In addition, such a dialogue would be self-defeating. The NRA knows one fact that prevails over all others. FEAR SELLS GUNS.

We have seen gun sales skyrocket even before a dialogue on the subject could be broached.

So, why WOULD the NRA enter into rational and reasonable dialogue, the end result of which could sound the death knell for even one small sliver of the entire gun manufacturing industry ?

Never happen.

These clowns, and the Republican Party in general, are the masters of the false equivalency, and the Non Sequitur as well. They don't intent to "fool" critical thinkers, but they know that these lazy and pernicious tactics *work* on those persons the Republicans describe as "low information voters" .

This tactic works in spades for the NRA who is appealing to fear-based gun owners, "low information" or otherwise, who are just terrified to walk down the street unarmed as an ordinary man. They care not for the facts of the picture, they are not about to compensate for their inadequacies any other way.

Samuel Colt cashed in on this psychology when he named his famous Colt .45 "The Great Equalizer" in the 1800s.

"There are none so blind as those that *will not* see." !
+33 # Dion Giles 2013-01-18 17:25
What an excellent appraisal, Susan Eisenhower,Mers chrod and Nominae.
+8 # Dion Giles 2013-01-18 17:59
. . .and Pickwicky and others - so refreshing so see the voice of decent America, the America that gave the world the first example of government flowing from the Enlightenment, coming across so clearly. Everyone, American or not, has a dog in this race because of what America represents and because of its place in the world.

Inevitably throwbacks wove themselves into America's DNA (like everyone else's) at the outset, but the beauty of DNA is that over time it must heal itself to survive. The signs are good that it is doing so.
+185 # Pickwicky 2013-01-18 12:34
Cordleycoit: Talk about non sequiturs, sweetie, you take the cake. And what's with "This president has no personal history . . ." ? Is this another way of saying Obama has never been 'vetted?' I can think of no president in US history that has been so thoroughly investigated by pro and con journalists. Every right wing hack has scoured Obama's 'personal history' trying to find THE SMOKING GUN. And what has everyone found? A decent, exceptionally well-educated, temperate, hard-working, loving family man. That exceptional education, by the way, is in Constitutional Law. Cordley, you must face the fact that you speak from ignorance--a case of massive, hateful, and ugly ignorance.
-71 # MidwestTom 2013-01-18 14:38
Dear Pickwicky, please explain how a 'C" student from Occidental College gets admitted to Harvard, and who pays for it. I have missed somehow missed this information.
+47 # reiverpacific 2013-01-18 18:02
Quoting MidwestTom:
Dear Pickwicky, please explain how a 'C" student from Occidental College gets admitted to Harvard, and who pays for it. I have missed somehow missed this information.

So to continue along your line, how does an incurious and vapid dim bulb who screwed up everything he ever touched, including the presidency and his country as well as several others, and who couldn't get a job selling used washing machines get admitted to Yale?
+20 # Regina 2013-01-18 19:24
It's called a "legacy admit" -- it applies to offspring of alumni, and Dubya was a third-generatio n admittee. No doubt his father an grandfather were good Alumni contributors to old Eli, so Dubya "earned" his admission.
+11 # Muzzi 2013-01-19 11:08
His father paid people to take his tests while "W" was partying in his room. I thought everyone knew that. The same thing happened when he got his business degree. He never got a law degree.
0 # RightForAReason 2013-01-19 16:05
Family connections. And he did quite well with the Texas Rangers and as Governor of Texas.
+14 # coach777b 2013-01-18 20:47
Quoting MidwestTom:
Dear Pickwicky, please explain how a 'C" student from Occidental College gets admitted to Harvard, and who pays for it. I have missed somehow missed this information.

You Sir, not only missed the information but you attempt to use your ignorance to besmirch the President. Obama was chosen by both Columbia and Harvard Law based on their entrance criteria. Since you do not sit on the Entrance Committee of either school, you shouldn't know.
But in your earnestness to figure out the 'why' of certain University entrance criteria, perhaps you have found a new vocation. Keep us informed, especially when you find out how Bush, who struggled to pass a driver's test, got into Yale AND Harvard Law. One of the great mysteries of the 20th century!
+2 # RightForAReason 2013-01-19 16:09
And since none of those records have ever been released, how could you POSSIBLY know how Columbia and Harvard admitted him? And Bush never went to Harvard Law. I doubt his driver's license test results are public knowledge either. Fact check yourself better.
+16 # rockieball 2013-01-19 09:41
Please explain to me how a person can go AWOL from his National Guard Unit, not get a dishonorable discharge, can't find oil in Texas, was a failure in every business venture became President via court decision. Well the list is so long it boggles the mind. But as what was said to Cordleycoit's post. STICK TO THE SUBJECT.
0 # Pickwicky 2013-01-24 13:12
Well Tom--I don't know for certain that Obama was a C student, but I can tell you this about admissions departments in universities: grades aren't the only criteria--not by a long shot. Community activities play a role; school activities play a role, written recommendations count. But heavy weight is given to the written essay--as it should be. High school students may have positive and negative experiences during those four years--in both grades, home, and community. They may delve into drugs, booze, sex, sire a baby, get pregnant, shoplift, have a criminal record, and so on. However, if a student writes a knockout essay, he or she could be accepted on that alone. I'm not saying that writing skill is all that Obama has going for him, but if you've read his books, you know he can write. Although a rare event, an exceptional human being is sometimes revealed in a college application essay.

Footnote: Don't fret--expert applicant readers know when an essay is 'borrowed' from someone else.
-19 # RightForAReason 2013-01-19 16:04
Found a man who has spent millions (of other people's money) blocking access to every record in his past imaginable. No school records, nothing in who paid for his Pakistan trip when he was dirt poor, who paid for his college, even his law license status is in question. But it is OK. He promises change. Just didn't specify the magnitude or direction. The Manchurian Candidate had more credibility.
+1 # David Starr 2013-01-20 13:24
@"RightForAReas on": Regarding a politician's corrupt history, your assertion can apply to most, if not all, U.S. presidents. And there's a certain one who should have been a fictional character in "1984," since he was a pathological fictioner, as well as with his other storytellers.

Does you education level prevent you from seeing beyond B/W?
+62 # Al21 2013-01-18 13:12
Slow down, cordley and get a grip.
-110 # keepinitreal 2013-01-18 13:20
I don't think there are 82 people on this site?
+42 # X Dane 2013-01-18 14:26
You need help.....What is the matter with you. The president's life is pretty much an open book. I thought it was only Trump and the other T bag idiots that would question "his history". I think you are one of the people who should not be near firearms for you are clearly paranoid

To ask for keeping the mega clips out of civilian hands is not pushing for civil war. General MC Crystal said also the assault weapons and large clips belongs ONLY in the military.
+17 # cvwilson 2013-01-18 15:09
Workable Solutions? The right's solutions always work to increase the wealth and power of the rich and shaft the rest of us. Most of us don't like that and, therefore, the President is quite right in rejecting them.
+19 # Dion Giles 2013-01-18 17:13
The gun freaks breathe fire about Civil War and this is because they - like their traitorous predecessors in the Confederacy - regard themselves as above the law, including any law that may end up being expressed in warrants requiring them to give up their combat armouries. If they defy the law by force, or even threaten to, it is they who will be launching Civil War - last time a war to defend a man's right to own human slaves, this time to defend a man's right to threaten the people with gunfire. Yes a man's right - this simmering rebellion is male-dictated despite the bit parts played by a few equally disturbed women like Ms Lanza.
+1 # Depressionborn 2013-01-21 11:22
Root hog, or die
Tyranny, liberty, or chaos
Founders knew tyranny needs power. The whole intent of the Second Amendment was to protect the people against tyrannical government, not for hunting or sport. Noah Webster wrote (when Pennsylvania was considering ratification of the Constitution) "Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed..." Hamilton, in Federalist 29: "...but if circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people, ... who stand ready to defend their rights..."
Now that elitist corporate and financial interests have taken over our government don't count on anything but trouble and it will be root hog or die.

"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains or slavery Forbid it, Almighty God!"? Historical reality by Patrick Henry. We will likely be on our own.
+12 # bigkahuna671 2013-01-18 17:27
There's the age-old question, "Were you always this stupid or is this something new?" You've got to be kidding with your line of thinking. You are obviously a Tea Party ranter with an axe to grind. Toying with the Constitution? If anyone (or institution) has done that, it's the Supreme Court, ignoring what the Constitution says about rights of the individual and assigning those rights to a corporation. And you can throw in the GOP Senators who have abused their right to filibuster in order to prevent this President from getting anything done just so they can, as Mitch McConnell has said, "...limit him to one term." Get your head out so you can see what's going on and maybe you'll realize this President is actually trying to make life easier for the rest of us. If anyone wants a Civil War, it's all you nullifiers who are just as bad as that bunch back in 1861 in South Carolina. I, personally, would love to see the rest of us get rid of all the southern states. But then, where would they go to get money to accomplish anything since they are the ones who take from the Federal Govt while paying the least in taxes. The South and all its true believers in nullification can take a flying leap and do the rest of us a favor. Oh yeah, and by the way, don't come running with your hands out for foreign aid!
+6 # ZarRV 2013-01-19 10:29
Civil War? Sounds like more paranoia and delusion on your side. Face it, the 2nd Amendment, written in 1791, is basically irrelevant to the United States we live in 2013. If anything, we need a concerted effort over the next generation to drasticaaly reduce the number of firearms in our society so we can have a more civil nation.
+133 # craferr 2013-01-18 11:56
Information previously probably on RSN suggests that President Obama receives of the order of 30 (presumably life) threats a day. Certainly not the same as an ordinary civilian. Accordingly it is clear that he and his family warrant far more security than the ordinary civilian. It is sheer ignorance and/or manipulation for anyone to even suggest otherwise.
+33 # BlueReview 2013-01-18 17:21
Thank you! You said it for me: Presidential death threats up 400% since Obama's election.

And thank you Ms. Eisenhower! I've been saying it since I heard about this ad, that the question ought to be asked, "Are your children as much at risk as a President's?"
+124 # Larry 2013-01-18 12:14
Does the NRA lie because it is desperate, or is it desperate because it lies?
+22 # Tazio 2013-01-18 18:53
Their desperate lies are necessary because the NRA has run out of intellectual ammunition.
+13 # Nominae 2013-01-18 20:41
Quoting Tazio:
Their desperate lies are necessary because the NRA has run out of intellectual ammunition.

These clowns *started* with an empty intellectual ammo box !
+5 # David Starr 2013-01-20 13:29
@NOMINAE: The right in general has started with an empty ammo box, intellectual and otherwise.

Abusing the filibuster by turning it into a maniplative marathon also proves the right has no valid argument for thier agenda, Thus, the resorting to "playground" tactics.
+2 # Nominae 2013-01-20 17:44
Quoting David Starr:
@NOMINAE: The right in general has started with an empty ammo box, intellectual and otherwise.

Abusing the filibuster by turning it into a maniplative marathon also proves the right has no valid argument for thier agenda, Thus, the resorting to "playground" tactics.

Good call ! And having people such as yourself point these things out is one of their greatest fears.

Keep 'em runnin' ! :)
+126 # Craig Jones 2013-01-18 12:20
The loud vocal minority of the NRA are getting far too much press coverage and are being allowed to high-jack the discussion for reform of the so called gun laws "already in existence". The ATF is a toothless bureaucracy thanks to the NRA virtually writing the laws with last minute insertion into homeland security bills. (See Jon Stewart's show January 16, 2013) All the polls indicate Americans want to take back their safety, streets and sanity. No more, "guns don't kill people, people kill people" a mantra that always should have read, "guns don't kill people, people WITH guns kill people". Each state should follow the example of New York and bring about the change we need.
+36 # tclose 2013-01-18 13:45
I agree with Craig's comment about too much press coverage. Every news report that I have seen about the issue of gun violence adds the views of Wayne Lapierre mouthing off about the right of unlimited availability of guns. There is no need for the press to always give the alternate view on issues if that alternate view is so demented.
+6 # Smiley 2013-01-18 16:07
"The loud vocal minority of the NRA are getting far too much press coverage" because they put their foot in their mouth so often and the corporates want to make us believe that anyone who doesn't want to give up their guns is a rabid idiot.
+62 # hd70642 2013-01-18 12:23
Ten rounds are enough for personal protection . Perhaps the NRA insistence for the necessity for hot rod firearms means that NRA really stands for Not really aware or nut cases running around
+1 # Vermont Grandma 2013-01-21 18:58
One wonders how many folks who own guns would join an organization if it were named the "National Assault Weapon Association"... . And how many politicians would defend the organization's viewpoint if they were defending the National Assault Weapons Association.
0 # Mannstein 2013-01-22 11:59
Haven't you noticed they all wear tin foil hats.
+102 # muskokajpm 2013-01-18 12:23
Mr or Ms Cordley etc. "no personal history"? "gets to toy with the Constitution@? How about a voting majority of US citizens and a majority of the Electoral College? Does that fulfill the requirements of the Constitution? Try not to let your ideology get in the way of your making a coherent comment on a well written article by the daughter of a respected GOP President. She is after all, the one who has lived it
+12 # X Dane 2013-01-18 14:34

Very good points, only, Susan Eisenhower is the GRANDAUGHTER of Dwight.
0 # Mannstein 2013-01-22 12:02
So what is your point? All close relatives of presidents get Secret Service protection in case you didn't notice.
+25 # peace2012 2013-01-18 14:42
Quoting muskokajpm:
Mr or Ms Cordley etc. "no personal history"? "gets to toy with the Constitution@? How about a voting majority of US citizens and a majority of the Electoral College? Does that fulfill the requirements of the Constitution? Try not to let your ideology get in the way of your making a coherent comment on a well written article by the daughter of a respected GOP President. She is after all, the one who has lived it

Quoting muskokajpm:
Mr or Ms Cordley etc. "no personal history"? "gets to toy with the Constitution@? How about a voting majority of US citizens and a majority of the Electoral College? Does that fulfill the requirements of the Constitution? Try not to let your ideology get in the way of your making a coherent comment on a well written article by the daughter of a respected GOP President. She is after all, the one who has lived it

What a classy comback, muskokajpm. I am old enough to remember the presidency of Ike and the country being happy with this Republican President.

I have not been a Republican since the Reagan era and I was raised in a Republican household. Like I have been telling people for the last decade, these are NOT Republicans of the class of Ike, but Neo-Cons. Thank you,Susan, for a thoughtful and informative piece of jounalism!!!!
+62 # wwway 2013-01-18 12:45
The NRA made an appeal to the worst within a human being. What does that say about NRA members in general?
We are known by the company we keep, right?
Anyone with common sense knows that the Secret Service protects every president and his children. For the NRA to invoke such an argument they are trolling for assissins. Every NRA member with a good heart need to drop membership right now and say why. They like good chrisitans have been way to quiet because they've been intimidated for so long.
+59 # Klanders 2013-01-18 12:59
Thank You, Ms Eisenhower, for your comments on this despicable advertisement by the NRA. One, among many, of the drawbacks to being a Bully is a growing insensitivity to the fact that one is bullying. Shame on the NRA.
-84 # Jonathan Levy 2013-01-18 12:59
Who cares about this article or that ad? The fact is either everyone disarms or no one. For the government and criminals (same difference) to be the only ones with arms then we are definitely screwed. Plus the whole gun control thing is a huge disgrace while Obama drone murders children and supports huge arms sales all over the world. This whole debate about gun control is theater and typically, the RSN sheep for Obama are going right along with it.
+12 # skipb48 2013-01-18 15:14
Do you believe in democracy or not? By definition the Government can't be criminals if the people voted them in. The Majority wants better gun control, period. I've got 15 guns in my basement right now and I bought all of them without a background check. It scares me that the loonies can also do this.
+37 # Vardoz 2013-01-18 13:10
We want to live in a nation where all of us feel safe. Unfortuately that is not the case for tens of millions or for those at the top. Humans are imperfect creatures and we have created our own hell here on this little rock spinning alone in sapce. Primative impulses now dominate our decisions. Lack of compassion, greed, violence and corruption have placed value for the well being of human life on the back burner. When one becomes President the price one must pay is constant protection it is the nature of the job. But for the masses, special interests are more interested in their profits at any cost to us and this is the way it is. We have made it a dangerous world. I called the Obama hot line and suggested that our police force act less like a SWAT team and more like our protectors as an example. I mentioned that in the UK the police don't carry guns and perhaps greeting unarmed peaceful protestors in a less aggressive way might set a more civilized tone for the people of the nation. As for our school children, a constant reminder that death might be around the corner seems more like a 3rd world nation then a developed one.
+8 # bmiluski 2013-01-18 13:22
If I didn't know any better I'd swear that some "liberals" somehow got into the NRA and are collapsing it from the inside.
+28 # Thinking 2013-01-18 13:27
Once we agree to a country awash in guns and gun use, then not just the school children need armed guards but every citizen. I want back the country where the unarmed feel safe and un-threatened
I thought we became civilized and left the Wild West behind. I learned in grade school that we moved from "Might makes right" to "Right makes might" back in King Arthur's time.
-113 # Michael_K 2013-01-18 13:29
I guess I'm absolutely the ONLY person to wonder whether the president's cynical use of a tragedy, to the point of exploiting children, both victims and solicited letter-writers, as stage dressing for the implementation of his agenda. I guess outrage and indignation are very selectively targeted in these parts. I've been accused of being "too morally rigid" for the 21st century USA, but I don't believe it.
+29 # Pickwicky 2013-01-18 14:27
Michael: More children died at Sandy Hook than adults. President Obama chose children's letters and their authors to represent and illustrate the mass of mail he received. Good choice.

To think theatrics is involved, as you clearly do, is to misunderstand the enormity of the tragedy and the sorrow.

And, no, Michael, you are not "too morally rigid." From the tone of your posts, you ought to be accused of being amoral and insensitive.
0 # Michael_K 2013-01-19 17:56
"To think theatrics is involved, as you clearly do, is to misunderstand the enormity of the tragedy and the sorrow."

I certainly don't misunderstand. I KNOW theatrics are involved. I've lived through cynical tragedy exploitation before, my offices were in WTC Tower One.

You may call me insensitive for refusing to be manipulated by the mass murderer of thousands upon thousands of Iraqis, Afghanis, Pakistanis and Yemenis (not even counting the North African victims of unofficial wars).

But as far as being amoral, that's your exclusive, at this time.
+2 # Pickwicky 2013-01-20 13:46
Michael--methin ks he doth protest too much. Your posts over time tell the real story of your character.
-53 # DaveM 2013-01-18 13:34
I agree that it is absurd to use the fact that Presidents and their families have (and NEED) Secret Service protection as an argument in favor of anything. To my understanding, President Obama has received more death threats than any President in history. Only one of those needs to be from someone with murderous intent for the Secret Service to be more than justified in offering every protection it can.

The NRA, strangely, has tried to connect two unrelated issues. In general I have little time for the NRA and now I have one more reason.

That said, and while it's somewhat off-topic, I cannot agree with most of the gun control proposals currently under discussion. If someone can lawfully purchase and own a firearm, they have demonstrated a lifetime of behavior which demands the respect which ought to be offered to any American citizen. If they want a semi-automatic rifle or a large-capacity clip for whatever reason, so be it.
+18 # X Dane 2013-01-18 14:50
Dave M.
You started out so reasonable and sane.

But I totally disagree with the last part of your comment. No civilians should own Assault weapons and mega clips. They are for wars. Not civilian life....Also the opinion of MC Crystal and several other generals. There are plenty of other fire arm for protection, hunting and sport.

A number of people, who legally can buy firearms are not at all checked out carefully enough.
+18 # X Dane 2013-01-18 15:26

I return to the last part of your comment again, for I just saw on TV that a Neo Nazi
guy, just arrested, had 17 assault weapons and several thousand rounds of ammo. AND here's a kicker He is a CONVICTED FELON he had killed a man.

He was not arrested BECAUSE of the weapon, but on other charges. He was selling counter fit NFL shirts......and THEN, they found his arsenal.

So many others buying guns..legally.. . simply are not investigated enough, and I will bet you anything. There are MANY more like him. He is a creep and a felon, BUT he is not what we would classify as mentally ill...He bought the weapons legally, BUT he sure does NOT demand respect.
+16 # Nominae 2013-01-18 15:46
@ DaveM

Yeah .... really ! And if they want an Abrams Tank in their driveway in case they need to do a lil' squirrel huntin', and a surface-to-air missile battery in their back yard for duck season, and maybe a basement full of RPGs and bazookas to take out cruising down Main Street in their 4WDs, how could the neighbors *possibly* object ?

Given that trained police, in an emergency situation, only hit what they are aiming at 30% of the time (ask LAPD, they admit it), then situationally untrained citizens shooting at paper targets that don't shoot back are JUST the neighbors you need.

I am pleased to see that you so obviously have this whole thing *SO* thoroughly well thought out !

Have you considered the right the REST OF US to be FREE FROM military artillery in our neighborhoods in the hands of the average Joe Sixpack , or now in the hands of any 18-yr-old snot-nosed kid tall enough to place his money up on the gun counter ?

Yeah .... didn't think so. So be it.
+26 # humanmancalvin 2013-01-18 13:50
The ignorance of the right is in full glory concerning their propaganda regarding the president & gun control. President Obama does not wish to strip the firearms from private citizens, period. This is a ploy by the NRA to boost gun & ammo sales as the gun industry supports these schills. They are playing to the lowest common denominator: the backwoods hillbilly's that get riled up about the absurd birther issue, hating all things Muslim & the list goes on & on. The Republican party has sunk below low & will remain trapped by their own hand into the political wilderness for a long time to come. it is virtually impossible minus utter fraud for the right to be victorious in presidential elections running fools like Romney & I well imagine that the tide will turn in the house come 2016. Citizens are sick & tired of the Tea Baggers antics 7 will make a wholesale change in the near future.
-15 # Penelope Jencks 2013-01-18 13:54
When I click on thumbs up or down i notice that the number increases or decreases by more than just one . . .
+4 # Nominae 2013-01-18 15:50
Quoting BBI:
When I click on thumbs up or down i notice that the number increases or decreases by more than just one . . .

Yeah ..... RSN explains that as other readers "updating" the comment before you clicked. That seems to "wash" until you notice increases of 30+ on a Friday afternoon when most readers are expected to be at work.

In addition, if you try to support an otherwise unpopular comment, often the count does not increase at ALL ! Aren't computers mysterious ? :)
+1 # Pickwicky 2013-01-20 13:48
Hey--team members! Why did BBI get all those thumbs down for stating a fact? Not worth being thrown to the lions, eh?
-2 # Cassandra2012 2013-01-20 17:34
Quoting Pickwicky:
Hey--team members! Why did BBI get all those thumbs down for stating a fact? Not worth being thrown to the lions, eh?

Asked and answered several times over---boring!
+20 # Rainphase 2013-01-18 14:21
An individual can "lawfully" buy a gun secondhand or at a gun show with no background checks or screening.

If it's okay for people to have assault rifles and large capacity clips for whatever reason, why shouldn't they be able to stockpile suicide vests and bombs? They all have the same purpose, mass killing
+16 # PABLO DIABLO 2013-01-18 14:34
Has Wayne Lapierre passed a background check? He appears mentally unstable.
+12 # MidwestTom 2013-01-18 14:35
Lost in this whole debate is the geographical differences about gun ownership. People in large metropolitan areas appear to favor more controls; while those in smaller cities and rural areas favor no change in gun rules. maybe the difference is response time to an emergency. A 911 call in a rural community may take 25 minutes are responders, while in the cities it is 2 minutes. The more remote one is the more one wants to be able to defend themselves.
+1 # Pickwicky 2013-01-20 13:49
Midwest Tom--or is the difference the notion that 'The South will rise again?'
+6 # pstamler 2013-01-18 14:51
Ms. Eisenhower gives Patty Hearst as the outstanding example of falling in love with one's protector. I nominate Susan Ford, who married one of the Secret Service agents assigned to guard her while her father was president.
+12 # Archie1954 2013-01-18 15:38
What is even more disgusting is that the reason the First Family need such protection is because the NRA has prevented common sense gun laws for decades.
+8 # kalpal 2013-01-18 15:39
I don't understand why anybody is disugsted by the disgusting people who are the management of the NRA?

The sole purpose of the NRA is to make sure gun makers have no impediment to interfere with their cashflow streams. Any assertion to being their for their members is belied by constant requests for more money and blind obedience to the existential threat that the government which we are repeatedly assured by America's right wing is grossly incompetent will somehow arise and instantly go forth and confiscate 300 million guns owned by law abiding citizens because it is so essentially evil.

I find that those who insist on lying to you for own good are actually doing so for their own good and not ever for yours.

I doubt that Wayne Lapierre has ever been an honest man. He lacks ethics, morals and the ability to cease his psychopathology over guns for even one moment.
+12 # ganymede 2013-01-18 15:46
I knew that this tragedy would be the beginning of some serious reform on firearms, and it's wonderful that the NRA is doing what stupid rightwingers have been doing for the past few years - namely, overplaying their hand, and they don't have an especially strong hand. No one is agianst guns for normal use,like hunting and security, but somehow we wind up with crazy extremists arming to the teeth because they're paranoic about Obama's tyrannical ways. Obama is the least violent prone president we've ever had, at least in my lifetime, and I was born in 1937! Rightwingers, get a grip, you've been fed rotten propaganda by the merchants of war and violence. Grow up, come out of your bunker and start living a real life with the rest of us.
+7 # chrisconnolly 2013-01-18 15:51
Another by product of having armed guards at school is that the school then seems to become more of a police state than a school. School policy is then instituted as if it were the black and white of the law and children are treated as criminals. My grandson was suspended for three weeks from a middle school with an armed police presence for stepping over the threshold of the girls bathroom. He was then threatened with a sexual assault charge. This is lunacy. What happened to teaching our children? Armed anybody at schools is a recipe for the much feared police state that the NRA so vehemently spreads fear about. The NRA wants us to believe that they should not and cannot be governed. Obama is trying to show that they are wrong.
-20 # frederico 2013-01-18 15:55
Ms. Eisenhower, if only Obama would heed the famous warning of your grandfather? Jonathan Levy got it right: "...the whole gun control thing is a huge disgrace while Obama drone murders children and supports huge arms sales all over the world. This whole debate about gun control is theater and typically, the RSN sheep for Obama are going right along with it."
Most of the rest of you commenters are shallow robots and paranoid apologists. Obama is an elitist hypocrite about this issue and many others. America is armed to the teeth, and we have exported our national genocide to many nations and locations around the world, not just to rape and pillage all the resources, but to control the planet and the heavens. How dare he suggest that anybody give up their weapons, while he pulls the trigger on yet another mass murdering atrocity?
+14 # nurseopinion 2013-01-18 17:09
Well said Susan. I'm a childhood friend and classmate of Mary, and I was unaware of any such thing back in the 60s. However, when do the lines of policy cross into private lives? I am sickened. The NRA has made a foolish choice with their ad. No child should need protection, especially in school. Schools should be a haven for all children. As a school nurse, I have been in lockdown, and it's frightening. I know the children were traumatized more so. The only answer I see is that of stricter gun control. Now the debate truly is twisted!
-1 # HerbR 2013-01-18 20:40
NRA= unspeakable !!
-23 # skylinefirepest 2013-01-18 21:47
The NRA ad was right on and truthful...obum ma has armed guards for his kids but our kids are not even offered an armed police presence! Disgusting!! And nurseopinion... gun control will not stop some crazy from coming into your school. Less than one week after the Conn. shootings my wife was admitted through an unlocked door into the local middle school. Obumma sucks! But it won't matter anyway because if he's not stopped by our House and Senate he will have spent us into oblivion. If he had come right out and truthfully said that the country cannot afford to hire the policemen it would have been political suicide so he wants gun control instead. Disgusting!!
+3 # BeenThinkin 2013-01-20 20:11
Sir, if automatic weapons are not restricted, no school guard will have a chance at protecting the children. He will be blown away with them. That is unless you arm him similarly and the children are collateral damage. Oh, well... Let's make the school a fortress and an armory... ridiculous..!
Everywhere children congregate, at bus stops, or on buses themselves they are vulnerable. Will we place a guard there too? Something is wrong with this picture. Let's put our dangerous toys away and play like civil people.
+1 # Vermont Grandma 2013-01-21 18:54
skylinefirepest , I assume you are knowledgeable enough to know that no president of the United States (or senator or congressman) controls who enters a local middle school or under what circumstances the school's doors are locked. So, if you think "Obumma sucks" because your wife got into the school, that's pretty peculiar. Similarly, as Susan Eisenhower so clearly expresses, even 50+ years ago, the possible risk even to a president's GRANDCHILDREN was enough that they had Secret Service protection. Children in our schools don't face the kind of risk that children and grandchildren of sitting presidents do. And there are many, many, many citizens who do not want armed security guards at children's schools. Fortunately, school decisions are made by elected local school boards who can decide not to join this push for more armed guards and police in schools.
+11 # tomtom 2013-01-18 23:49
I believe each American citizen has the God Given right to own their own Nuclear Warhead. Only then Will I feel safe.
+1 # Pickwicky 2013-01-19 15:10
tomtom--the way things are going, owning your own nuke is the only thing that will make you safe. You throw your bomb at me; I'll throw mine at you. So goes the world.
+1 # Rain17 2013-01-19 07:28
What is sickening about these conservatives is that they won't hesitate to attack Democrats, liberals, and progressives' children even though they have nothing to do with what is going on. I saw the ad and it savages the Obamas for sending their children to private school. Yet many wealthy and well-connected Republicans do the same thing. Why is it okay for them to do it, but not the Obamas?
0 # Dr Peter Sloane 2013-01-19 09:44
@bbi. That's ten out of ten for observance! Isn't modern technology wonderfulm it can add and subtract all at the same time.
0 # David Starr 2013-01-19 14:02
NRA = Nutty Reactionary Asses
+1 # ganymede 2013-01-19 14:49
I can't believe that there's not a mass resignation movement happening. Surely, of the many millions of NRA membeers, there must be a large number who are totally disgusted at the immoral behaviour of this organization. Let's hear from you decent people who don't want to be associated with this diabolical organization. Who needs the NRA!
+1 # Hopperthe 2nd 2013-01-19 16:24
I am a gun owner and concealed carry permit holder. I believe in gun owners rights, but this ad is one of the many reasons why I will NEVER belong to the nra.
+3 # ghostperson 2013-01-19 18:32
In response to Susan's question, no, they have no decency. That was lost long ago in the miasma of Lee Attwater and Karl Rove politics of filth. I would have said "dirty politics" but what they did is filth, pure and simple.

The far right believes, for reasons never stated, that it is their due to behave in this way. (Read John Dean's Conservatives Without Conscience).

The quandry in which we find ourselves is that progressives have to deal with what are essentially "mad dogs" and there is no innoculation for their disease.
+3 # BeenThinkin 2013-01-20 20:03
Susan, thank you for giving us a perspective that few have experienced. Your words were clear and spot-on!
-5 # Martintfre 2013-01-21 10:48
Esposing hypocritical politicians as the hypocritical politicians they are is diabolical.

How dare Obama make that sooo easy to do.

Oh yea, One (of many) important difference between Obama and Eisenhower -- the general was not interested in disarming the people

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