Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh earned praise from the NRA's propaganda arm this week for his extremist views on assault weapons.
Weapons like the AR-15 have been described as the "weapon of choice" for mass shooters. An AR-15 was used at Sandy Hook Elementary to gun down innocent toddlers and their teachers; in the Las Vegas mass shooting; and at Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Florida.
The bloody legacy of the AR-15 hasn't stopped the NRA from hailing it as "America's Rifle."
Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) recently highlighted Kavanaugh's gun extremism. Speaking to the survivors of the Parkland school shooting, Blumenthal explained, "If you care about common sense gun violence protection, Judge Kavanaugh is your worst nightmare."
He added, "He is the worst nightmare of advocates of common sense, sensible measures to stop the epidemic of gun violence in this country."
Kavanaugh has railed against efforts to ban the AR-15, and in a dissenting opinion made the extremist argument that "a ban on a class of arms …. is equivalent to a ban on a category of speech."
While many Americans would recoil in horror at such a twisted outlook, the NRA loves it.
On NRA TV, which is completely owned and operated by the NRA, hosts swooned over Kavanaugh's position on assault weapons.
Grant Stinchfield, host of the NRA-TV program "Stinchfield," said Kavanaugh's nomination was "a reward for our hard work." He specifically highlighted Kavanaugh's gun position, praising its extremism and lamenting the court's "decision to unfortunately uphold the D.C. ban on so-called assault weapons."
NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch, who mocked the victims of the Parkland shooting, has a show on NRA TV as well. She similarly gushed over Kavanaugh's dissent without concerns about how his position helps mass shooters, and said she was "very pleased" with his words.
Cam Edwards, another NRA TV host, said he wished Kavanaugh's assault weapon opinion "had carried the day," and described his extremism as simply a "commonsense argument."
How extreme is the NRA-Kavanaugh approach to assault weapons?
Former Army lieutenant colonel Ralph Peters favors a ban on assault weapons like the AR-15. He has written about the issue at the conservative NY Post, and spoken about it on Fox News, where he served as a commentator until very recently.
Peters said the AR-15 is not a hunting weapon as the NRA claims, but is instead, "Meant to tear bodies apart. They tear up the meat."
Summing up the weapon that the NRA and Trump's Supreme Court nominee believe should be on the streets, Peters said, "The purpose of the AR-15 series weapons is to kill and maim human beings. That’s it."
He added that the guns are "meant to just tear the body apart so that the wounded person can’t get up and fight again" and should be limited to war.
Peters concluded, "It’s pathetic that we’re so wrapped up around AR-15s that we don’t want to protect children."
On the court, Kavanaugh has already staked out a position that would allow those who want to hunt down innocents in their schools to have access to weapons that "tear up the meat."
This pleases the NRA, which invested millions in Trump's election campaign to purchase judges with this skewed view on weapons — and now the group is cashing in.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.