The National Rifle Association (NRA) sparked backlash this Mother’s Day when the organization commemorated the holiday by tweeting a photo of a mother and daughter posing with rifles.
“Happy Mother’s Day to all NRA moms! On top of the millions of other jobs moms have, NRA moms fight for our right to self-defense, while also defending themselves, their families, and communities. We are forever grateful for these fierce women,” tweeted the NRA.
“Mama didn’t raise a victim,” the meme was captioned.
Happy Mother’s Day to all NRA moms!
On top of the millions of other jobs moms have, NRA moms fight for our right to self-defense, while also defending themselves, their families, and communities.
We are forever grateful for these fierce women. pic.twitter.com/IC2rvlhGDe
— NRA (@NRA) May 9, 2021
The post sparked significant backlash as the NRA quickly began to trend on Twitter with people denouncing it as a terrorist organization that uses children as props.
“The 6 VICTIMS of the mass shooting in Colorado Springs would beg to differ but they’re DEAD. What kind of ghouls post something like this on Mother’s Day?” tweeted one user.
Other posts criticized the photo for not respecting a child’s innocence.
“I took @NRA classes as a kid and even won a b-b gun competition. Still have the trophy. How this group has evolved over the past few decades is beyond disturbing. Literal psychopaths now & no doubt call yourselves Christians. Yeah, since Jesus was big into weapons of death,” tweeted one user.
“That Child lacks the ability to make a fully cognitive and decisive choice during a time of action. Scientists, biologists, and psychologists all completely agree with that fact. Putting a gun in her hand at that age for daily life, effectively guarantees she will kill,” tweeted another user. “I am not talking about gun respect and gun education. My brothers and I had that and we have gun respect and knowledge. But…I am talking about the implication of an armed child walking around daily with that killing device. Children lack enough life experience to decide death.”
Some people supported the photo, noting their experiences with guns as children.
“I grew up with guns around that age as most of my friends. Never have I thought of taking one to school or shooting someone. It comes down to teaching right from wrong and respect of the weapon. Opinions from people who think all guns and people are bad mean nothing,” tweeted one user.
“May seem BS. I was taught how to shoot a when I was 8. Never shot any kinda of rifle until 2017. Train them young and be responsible. From the looks its [sic] a tactical 22LR rifle,” tweeted another user.
Gun rights advocates have long-encouraged gun owners to teach their children gun safety at an early age. According to NRA Family, the best time to teach a child about guns is when they first start showing interest in them.
“Children who are interested in a subject are capable of learning more quickly than anything known to man,” writes Jeff Johnston for NRA Family. “So the best time to teach a child about guns is when he or she has expressed interest in them. In other words, if a child isn’t naturally inquiring about going shooting or wanting to see Mommy’s or Daddy’s gun, it isn’t time yet. Maybe he or she will never get there. At some point, it’s this writer’s belief that all kids of adequate mental capacity should learn gun safety—after all, there are 300 million guns in America, and being ignorant about them is akin to being unable to swim.”
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