After days of silence, the National Rifle Association released a statement Tuesday on the tragic shooting in Newtown, Conn., saying it will make "meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again."
In the release, the organization begins to explain its silence, saying: "Out of respect for the families, and as a matter of common decency, we have given time for mourning, prayer and a full investigation of the facts before commenting."
Now, this could be read as anything from pumping gobs of money into advocating more gun rights to finally making significant changes to its pro-gun manufacturing stances.
After all, isn't it the hardcore gun owners who are saying "If the teachers had been armed..." fully neglecting the fact that there have been mass killing on military bases where there are arms aplenty. If trained military officers and soldiers can't react quickly enough to a slaughter by automatic weaponry, how in the heck is a principal supposed to a) hear gun fire, b) recognize it as gun fire, c) run to the gun safe, d) open it while emotionally compromised, e) pull out a weapon, f) load it (because presumably you wouldn't want loaded weapons in a school, and g) run back down the hall and steady herself (since most principals are women) and shoot a gunman, all without sacrificing another student?
A "meaningful contribution" could be interpreted as to offer gun training to teachers for free, you see.
In thirty years, not one mass shooting has been stopped by a civilian with a gun, unless you count the killers who have shot themselves on the scene. Apocryphal stories abound of armed citizens staring down a gunman, but those sound more like bar-boasts than anything else and are not backed up by trials where evidence has been submitted.
The NRA is scheduled to hold a press conference in Washington, DC on Friday. That it has not decided to rub people's noses in it by holding an ad hoc convention in Hartford instead can be taken as a sign of progress.
Maybe, just maybe, its dawned on them that people matter more than guns.