As noted elsewhere here on the msnbc interwebs, the National Rifle Association has sort of but not really broken its silence in the wake of the horrible mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. An NRA statement released earlier today states that its membership is “shocked, saddened and heartbroken by the news of the horrific and senseless murders in Newtown.” The pro-gun group also says it is “prepared to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again,” and is promising to hold a “major” press conference on Friday.
But in his latest Rewrite, msnbc’s Lawrence O’Donnell noted a prominent theme in past statements by NRA head Wayne LaPierre, who O’Donnell called “blood-drenched,” after gun violence grabbed national headlines. To highlight it, he focused on a recent statement by LaPierre in the wake of a gun violence story going national when the NRA boss said, “There’s a lot of different ways this crime could have been committed.”
O’Donnell argued, however, when it comes to the Sandy Hook horror, there are not “a lot of different ways” that crime could have been committed. ”There is only one way,” O’Donnell said. “The way that Wayne LaPierre wants to preserve: mass murder by firearm, an all-too-common American way of death.”
O’Donnell also noted some facts from a 2011 Harvard School of Public Health study on gun safety. O’Donnell read from the study:
“A Harvard School of Public Health study finds ‘the health risk of a gun in the home is greater than the benefit… that gun accidents are most likely to occur in homes with guns… (and) that a gun in the home is a risk factor for intimidation and for killing women in their homes.’ The Harvard study also found, quote: ‘… there is no credible evidence of a deterrent effect of firearms or that a gun in the home reduces the likelihood or severity of injury during an altercation or break-in.”
In the face of those facts, O’Donnell says there is one certainty about what Wayne LaPierre and the NRA will say during the group’s press conference on Friday. “We know this,” O’Donnell said. “There is nothing Wayne LaPierre can say, there are no words that can wash the blood from his hands.”