The National Rifle Association announced Friday the model National School Shield program, which would put armed guards in the nation's schools. The group dismissed gun control efforts discussed throughout the week in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut, shootings. The announcement attracted news media and protesters to downtown Washington, D.C. We live-blogged Friday's event and a transcript of the speech is available here.
[Updated 11:33 a.m.] "I welcome the opportunity to serve this vital and potentially life-saving effort,” Hutchinson said. LaPierre walks to the stage and gives concluding remarks. He refuses to take questions from the press.
[Updated 11:27 a.m.] Hutchinson: “This will be a program that does not depend upon massive funding from the local government,” instead it will depend on the community.
[Updated 11:27 a.m.] LaPierre introduces former U.S. Congressman Asa Hutchinson, who will run the program. This is the program's website.
[Updated 11:25 a.m.] LaPierre announces the national model School Shield Response Program, which he calls a "multifaceted program" to provide security in the nation's schools. It will be available to every school in the nation "free of charge."
[Updated 11:22 a.m.] LaPierre: “I call on Congress today to act immediately to appropriate funds to put armed security guards in every American school.”
[Updated 11:21 a.m.] LaPierre: “This president “scrapped” legislation that would have helped protect schools.
[Updated 11:17 a.m.] LaPierre: “When you hear your glass breaking at 3 a.m. and you call 911 you won’t be able to pray hard enough for a gun in the hands of a good guy to get their fast enough,” he said. “Why is a good good when it’s used to protect the president … but bad when it comes to protecting our children?”
[Updated 11:15 a.m.] LaPierre: "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”
[Updated 11:15 a.m.] The media perpetuates the myth that one more gun law will protect us and many previous ones have failed, he said.
— CODEPINK (@codepink) December 21, 2012
[Updated 11:13 a.m.] LaPierre is interrupted again, this time by a protester shouting "The NRA has blood on its hands!"
[Updated 11:11 a.m.] LaPierre says there is no database for the mentally ill. “There exists in this country sadly a callous and corrupt industry that sales and sows violence against its own people. .. with names like 'BulletStorm,' 'Grand Theft Auto,’ and 'Kindergarten Killers,' he said.
[Updated 11:07 a.m.] LaPierre: “We, as a society, leave [our children] every day utterly defenseless and the monsters with the predators of the day,” he said as a protester held up a red Code Pink sign that said the NRA was to blame for the death of children. He was noisily led out but still audible.
[Updated 11:05 a.m.] Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president of the NRA, says: “Now we must speak, for the safety of our children,” then he asked what he said was the central question of the day: “How do we protect our children now, starting today, in a way we know works?”
[Updated 11:02 a.m.] Dave Keene, president of the NRA, approaches the podium and says, “What do we do about the tragedies like what took place in Newtown, Connecticut?”