Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

Sick and Tired: Media Seeks to Blame Ebola on NRA's Opposition to Anti-Gun Nominee

Friday, January 2, 2015

Over the years, gun control supporters and their allies in the media have attempted to blame NRA for a variety of the nation’s problems. A recent line of attack attempting to tie NRA to the Ebola outbreak, however, shows NRA’s critics sinking to a new level of buffoonery.

The claim is that NRA’s opposition to Barack Obama’s nomination of Dr. Vivek Murthy to be Surgeon General has deprived Americans of an effective response to the outbreak and an authoritative voice for reliable information on the disease. An early version of the argument appeared in an Oct. 2 MSNBC web article with the laughable title, “How the NRA is making the Ebola crisis worse.” Since then, this theme has been uncritically rehashed by a wide swath of the anti-gun press, from nationally known talking heads to local opinion columnists. To state the obvious, NRA’s opposition to Murthy’s nomination is grounded in his established anti-gun activism, outlined in a Feb. 26 letter sent to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-NEV., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY.

The letter detailed Murthy’s history of partisan activism as a co-founder of Doctors for Obama, which later morphed into Doctors for America. The group was originally founded to support Barack Obama’s first presidential campaign. Following Obama’s victory, the organization exploited the trust most Americans have in their doctors to push the president’s policy agenda, including on gun control.

In January 2013, the group sent letters, signed by Murthy himself, to Congress and Vice President Joe Biden, outlining their support for a variety of extreme gun control measures. These included a ban on popular semi-automatic firearms and their ammunition, firearm owner licensing, mandatory waiting periods of at least 48 hours and limits on the purchase of ammunition. Allowing a person with these publicly stated positions to guide the nation’s public health apparatus (which gun control supporters have long sought to exploit) would have been a disaster for our nation’s 100 million gun owners.

Murthy is not just a garden variety gun control activist, but one who sees “medicine” and gun control as inextricably tied. He specifically advocated for reinstating taxpayer-funded “firearms injury and death prevention research” through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health. Congress determined that such research was so politicized and useless in the 1990s that it has curbed it ever since with funding restrictions. Murthy also insisted on the repeal of NRA-supported protections in Obamacare that prohibit its use for compiling databases on gun ownership through patients’ interactions with their doctors and insurance companies.

In addition, the 37-year-old Murthy only finished his medical residency in 2006. According to former Surgeon General Richard Carmona, while Murthy may have “great potential,” he’d need another 20 years of practice before he’d “merit” the title of America’s top doctor. Indeed, Murthy’s own comments suggest his formative attitude on guns was not shaped strictly by long immersion in science. An article in the U.K. Daily Mail noted that Murthy—as a high school valedictorian—indicated his views on “kids and violence” and “society’s preoccupation with firearms” were influenced by the “fiery gun battles” in Saturday morning cartoons.

Needless to say, Ebola itself is no joking matter. Yet the nomination of Murthy merely repeats the mistake of using assets of the U.S. government meant to serve the public through unbiased science to create yet another political soapbox. We can’t say for sure the nation would be better prepared to face Ebola if the CDC had stuck to studying real pathogens, rather than trying to misapply that label to guns, but the potential consequences of putting politics first loom large in the face of a real viral outbreak.

Ironically, the White House itself rebutted the media narrative that NRA is suppressing Murthy’s participation in the Ebola response by choosing Ronald Klain, an attorney and former chief of staff to the vice president, as the so-called “Ebola Czar.” Although Senate confirmation was not required, there’s no indication that Murthy was even considered.

Chris W. Cox

BY Chris W. Cox

NRA-ILA Executive Director

Follow This Contributor

Chris W. Cox has served as the executive director of the Institute for Legislative Action, the political and lobbying arm of NRA, since 2002. As NRA’s principal political strategist, Cox oversees eight NRA-ILA divisions: Federal Affairs; State & Local Affairs; Public Affairs; Grassroots; Finance; Research & Information; Conservation, Wildlife & Natural Resources; and Office of Legislative Counsel. Cox also serves as chairman of NRA’s Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF), the Association’s political action committee; president of the NRA Freedom Action Foundation (NRA-FAF), which focuses on non-partisan voter registration and citizen education; and chairman of NRA Country, an effort to bring country music artists together with NRA members in support of our Second Amendment freedoms and hunting heritage.

TRENDING NOW
First, Carry No Gun: Police Chief Gets Inhospitable Reception at Texas Medical Clinic

News  

Friday, August 18, 2017

First, Carry No Gun: Police Chief Gets Inhospitable Reception at Texas Medical Clinic

We recently reported on claims that “gun safety advocates” in the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services have given a U.S. Marine Corps. veteran an untenable choice: custody of his grandson or his constitutional ...

Elizabeth Warren Urges Democrats to Champion Gun Control, Shut Down Debate

News  

Friday, August 18, 2017

Elizabeth Warren Urges Democrats to Champion Gun Control, Shut Down Debate

Just as many in the Democratic Party are seeking to moderate their message in order to once again compete as a national political party, some high-profile Democrats are urging the party to lurch further left ...

Oregon: Governor Signs Anti-Gun Bill into Law

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Oregon: Governor Signs Anti-Gun Bill into Law

Yesterday, Governor Kate Brown signed Senate Bill 719A.  Based on a California law enacted in 2014, SB 719A will create a so-called “Extreme Risk Protection Order” (ERPO) that could be obtained by a law enforcement ...

California: Ruling in NRA/CRPA Lawsuit Reigns in DOJ’s Misuse of DROS Fees

Friday, August 18, 2017

California: Ruling in NRA/CRPA Lawsuit Reigns in DOJ’s Misuse of DROS Fees

A California state court issued an important ruling in the NRA and CRPA supported case of Gentry v. Becerra, holding DOJ accountable for its historical mismanagement and misuse of DROS (dealer record of sale) account funds.

American Bar Association Continues to Attack Gun Owners, Due Process

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, August 18, 2017

American Bar Association Continues to Attack Gun Owners, Due Process

The 2016 compilation of legislative policies of the ABA includes a raft of gun control proposals. In it, the ABA advocates for outmoded gun control measures, such as limits on the sale and possession of ...

Arizona Supreme Court Rebuffs Tucson’s Illegal Destruction of Firearms

News  

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Arizona Supreme Court Rebuffs Tucson’s Illegal Destruction of Firearms

On Thursday, the Arizona Supreme Court unanimously held that the state was within its authority to prohibit cities and counties from routinely destroying firearms obtained through forfeiture or as unclaimed property. State law holds that ...

Washington: Department of Labor & Industries Targeting Shooting Ranges

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Washington: Department of Labor & Industries Targeting Shooting Ranges

At the request of Public Health, Seattle & King County, the Washington Department of Labor and Industries has released a “first draft” of a new statewide regulatory scheme targeting lead and lead exposure in the workplace. ...

Trump Administration Ends Another Obama-era Anti-Gun Policy

News  

Friday, August 18, 2017

Trump Administration Ends Another Obama-era Anti-Gun Policy

Justice Department to End ‘Operation Choke Point’

Justice Department Terminates and Repudiates Operation Choke Point

News  

Friday, August 18, 2017

Justice Department Terminates and Repudiates Operation Choke Point

Current Justice Department leadership and Boyd should be commended for their forceful statement on this matter. This unequivocal repudiation of Operation Choke Point should make a return to such political persecution unpalatable for all but ...

Stossel Report Reinforces Urgent Need for Congressional Action

Second Amendment  

Gun Laws  

News  

Friday, August 11, 2017

Stossel Report Reinforces Urgent Need for Congressional Action

Award-winning journalist John Stossel published a report this week that provides a timely reminder that – nearly a decade after the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller – law abiding gun ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -
NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.