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Many terrorists use guns. The National Rifle Association describes itself as "America's foremost defender of Second Amendment rights" and generally opposes any gun control legislation. Does it necessarily follow that the NRA supports terrorists, or is itself a terrorist organization?
San Francisco's government seems to think so. The city's Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a resolution declaring the NRA a "domestic terrorist organization." So, what does that mean for the gun rights group?
"The National Rifle Association musters its considerable wealth and organizational strength to promote gun ownership and incite gun owners to acts of violence," the resolution reads. It also claims the NRA "spreads propaganda that misinforms and aims to deceive the public about the dangers of gun violence ... promotes extremist positions, in defiance of the views of a majority of its membership and the public, and undermine the general welfare, and ... has armed those individuals who would and have committed acts of terrorism."
The resolution also cites the U.S. Department of Justice definition of terrorism and support of terrorist acts, while concluding: "All countries have violent and hateful people, but only in America do we give them ready access to assault weapons and large-capacity magazines thanks, in large part, to the National Rifle Association's influence." Therefore, according to the 3-page resolution, the City and County of San Francisco "intends to declare the National Rifle Association a domestic terrorist organization."
So, does that mean the FBI is coming for the NRA's guns? Not exactly. Under its own terms, the city will re-examine financial and contractual relationships its vendors have with the NRA and "take every reasonable step to limit those entities who do business with the City and County of San Francisco from doing business with the organization. That probably means the NRA's next annual meeting won't be in the City by the Bay.
"This ludicrous stunt by the Board of Supervisors is an effort to distract from the real problems facing San Francisco, such as rampant homelessness, drug abuse, and skyrocketing petty crime," NRA spokesperson Amy Hunter said in a statement preceding the vote. "The board is wasting taxpayer dollars to declare 5 million law-abiding Americans domestic terrorists, and it's shameful."
The FBI's Most Wanted List includes only 12 domestic terrorists, none of whom were involved in mass shootings or even committed a crime since the year 2000. Half the list are charged with hijacking planes headed abroad in the '70s and '80s.