Celebrities and Activists Band Up to Confront the NRA
Following the recent Parkland school shooting, a lot of people have come up with strategies to confront the NRA. The latest development is that a number of celebrities and activists have tapped up David Hogg, a Parkland student to go against the NRA.
The group sent out an open letter to Wayne LaPierre, the NRA Executive Vice President in an effort to reduce the NRA’s influence in the American political scene. In the letter, the group mentions that the NRA’s time was up. They cited that they were tired of all the bloodshed that enabled the organization to cut checks to politicians.
More than 100 members make up the group. They go by the moniker NoRA (No Rifle Association) Initiative. They intend to achieve their goals through a series of voter registration drives, boycotts, nationwide artistic campaigns and demonstrations in the streets.
Last Friday marked the launch of the NoRA initiative. The event was set to coincide with the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School mass shooting. Around the country, students participated in a national school walk out in commemoration of the 1999 bloodbath.
The other NoRA members include Amy Schumer, Jimmy Kimmel, W. Kamau Bell, Julianne Moore, Minnie Driver, Debra Messing, Ashley Judd, Constance Wu, Amber Tamblyn, Tarana Burke, plus numerous other artists, gun violence survivors, and experts in gun policies.
While the idea is a novel one, there are no assurances it will succeed. Irrespective, NoRA believes that they can harness the power of digital awareness and grassroots campaigns. In the end, they’d like to see a change of leadership at the top. Ideally, they expect those who’ve been obstructing movements like theirs to be shown the door by voters.
After partaking in the #MeToo movement last year, Milano hopes that the newly established NoRA initiative helps tackle the gun control issue in society with the same effectiveness. The initiative was conceived just a day after 17 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students and teachers were killed on February 14. The school is situated in Parkland, Fla.
The students’ reaction following the shooting of their fellow comrades helped bring up a national debate. Talk was rife on the essence of ending gun violence. The debate also centered on what could be done with regards to the creation of gun control laws. As a mother of two kids, Milano hopes that gun laws will be put in place sooner rather than later. She mentioned that the very thought that her kids could be subject to a similar scenario as witnessed in Parkland keeps her up at night.
In addition, Milano lauded the Parkland students who were named in Time’s 100 list as top influencers in the world. At the same time, she felt encouraged to also play her part towards the betterment of society. Thus, she conceptualized the idea of NoRA by inviting like-minded celebrities and activists to the party.
According to the Center for Responsive Politics, during the 2016 election, the NRA spent $54 million on outside spending. Out of this amount, a significant portion went towards funding President Donald Trump’s campaign. Notably, Trump was a vocal supporter of the NRA during the campaign period.
Unsurprisingly, the NRA declined to comment about the NoRA initiative when quizzed about it by members of the pressed. One of the groups that balance NoRA’s account, the Newtown Action Alliance’s chairperson, also voiced its concern about the influence the NRA has on the political landscape in America. Po Murray, the chair, made the proclamation that the time was nigh for change.
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