The NRA Convention starts today, in Nashville, Tennessee. And so, rather predictably, the New York Times has started its day by lying about it. Per the Times’s editorial board:
Seventy-thousand people are expected to attend the National Rifle Association’s convention opening on Friday in Tennessee, and not one of them will be allowed to come armed with guns that can actually shoot. After all the N.R.A. propaganda about how “good guys with guns” are needed to be on guard across American life, from elementary schools to workplaces, the weekend’s gathering of disarmed conventioneers seems the ultimate in hypocrisy.
There will be plenty of weapons in evidence at the hundreds of display booths, but for convention security the firing pins must be removed. So far, there has been none of the familiar complaint about infringing supposedly sacrosanct Second Amendment rights — the gun lobby’s main argument in opposing tighter federal background checks on gun buyers after the 2012 gun massacre of schoolchildren in Connecticut.
This is completely and utterly wrong. In fact, anyone with a permit valid in Tennessee can “come armed with guns that actually shoot.” As the Tennesseean confirms:
The National Rifle Association and the Music City Center have confirmed that gun owners with the proper carry permits can bring their guns with them into the center during the association’s convention, which will be held there this weekend.
A spokeswoman for the center said its policy is to follow state law and to allow the organizations holding events inside the facility to decide whether they wish for people to carry their guns inside.
Music City Center spokeswoman Mary Brette Clippard confirmed to The Tennessean on Tuesday afternoon that the NRA had no problem with gun owners with the proper gun permits bringing their weapons inside.
As I noted when the New York Daily News peddled this same falsehood earlier in the week, the only guns that will have their firing pins removed are those that are presented for examination within the convention’s attendant trade show. This is standard practice. Why? Well, because the trade show guns are not for sale; they are not there to be fired; and they cannot be removed from their display cases. They exist only to demonstrate to attendees what each company has on offer.
This is a pathetic lie, designed to imply “hypocrisy” where there is none. America’s “paper of record” should fix its editorial.
UPDATE: MSNBC tried this game, too, but ended up lost in a maze of corrections.