Perry to Obama: It's the Video Games, Not the Guns. Let Us Pray.
In response to President Barack Obama's executive orders mostly relating to the sale and possession of firearms, Governor Rick Perry issued a release that sounds like it was pulled directly from the talking points of the National Rifle Association, which isn't all that surprising considering his support of the organization and his support for fewer gun control restrictions. Perry pushed hard to repeal the ban on guns on college campuses, a measure that ultimately failed.
In a sharply-worded message to Obama, Perry said the use of children to advance a "pre-existing political agenda that would not have saved those children, disgusts me, personally." He, like the NRA, blames violence in movies, video games and "online fascinations" (whatever that means) finding their way "into vulnerable hearts and minds" as the culprit, not the guns themselves.
To sum up, weak-minded idiots easily swayed by Grand Theft Auto are responsible for gun violence at places like Sandy Hook Elementary, not assault weapons.
The issue for many with Perry's stance on gun rights is not that he is entirely wrong. Violent films, video games and online "fascinations" may very well play a role in escalating violence, particularly among young people, and there certainly should be a conversation to address those potential problems. The problem is that Perry and the NRA don't want to tackle all the issues involving gun violence because it would mean actually talking about guns. For Perry, in addition to less gun control, he thinks the solution to gun violence is to pray (didn't he say the same thing about the drought?) "Let us return to our places of worship and pray for help," the release said. "Above all, let us pray for our children."
His full statement is below:
"The Vice President's committee was appointed in response to the tragedy at Newtown, but very few of his recommendations have anything to do with what happened there.
"Guns require a finger to pull the trigger. The sad young man who did that in Newtown was clearly haunted by demons and no gun law could have saved the children in Sandy Hook Elementary from his terror.
"There is evil prowling in the world - it shows up in our movies, video games and online fascinations, and finds its way into vulnerable hearts and minds. As a free people, let us choose what kind of people we will be. Laws, the only redoubt of secularism, will not suffice. Let us all return to our places of worship and pray for help. Above all, let us pray for our children.
"In fact, the piling on by the political left, and their cohorts in the media, to use the massacre of little children to advance a pre-existing political agenda that would not have saved those children, disgusts me, personally. The second amendment to the Constitution is a basic right of free people and cannot be nor will it be abridged by the executive power of this or any other president."
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Houston Press' biggest stories.