Signs around Nashville are proclaiming “9 Acres of Guns” as the ardent members of the National Rifle Association descend upon the city. Some 70,000 strong will boldly brandish their right to carry their guns – no matter where they want to go.
So enthralled are the city leaders to have them as our guests, that the newly opened Nashville Convention Center will allow people to carry their guns inside the Convention Center. In breathless anticipation, I share will you their excitement as found on their webpage:
“With over 550 exhibitors covering 450,000 square feet of interior and exterior exhibit hall space, educational seminars, celebrities, and fun filled special events, bring the whole family- there will be something for everyone! Spend the day exploring the products from every major firearm company in the country, book the hunt of a lifetime in our exclusive outfitter section, and view priceless collections of firearms in our gun collector area. You’ll also see knives, wildlife art, shooting accessories, hunting gear, ATV’s, and much more!”
At the center of it all is the “NRA Freedom Festival” where NRA members can celebrate their fun filled pursuit which has resulted in:
- 20 gunshot related hospitalizations a day in the U.S. for children under 18
- 95 school shootings in just the last two years
- Twice as many deaths of children by gunshots than cancer
- More deaths in Tennessee by guns (1,030) than by motor vehicles (1,027)
- Over 33,000 deaths by guns a year in the United States
In an attempt by TN politicians to curry favor with the NRA, the Tennessee legislature has been trying to perfect its “Guns in Parks” law, which would allow gun toting hikers and picnickers to carry their guns into parks, even when local governments have banned them. One version that got passed even gave allowance for people to carry guns into the halls of the TN state capital. After thinking it over, they took that provision out.
Williamson County, which is in the suburbs of Nashville, passed its own resolution in response. They plan to post signs in its parks that tells gun owners not to bring guns into their parks when children are playing in sports leagues and in organized school outings.
While few would dispute the right for people to have a gun, the NRA and its adherents have taken this right to an extreme that daily puts our children in danger. With over 8,000,000 guns being sold a year in the United States, no reasonable person can say that people don’t have access to lethal firearms. But whose talking about reason? So as the NRA revels in all things guns, I invite the rest of us to pray for our children and support those who say enough is enough.