A huge protest crowd — reported to be in the thousands — showed up in Houston this Friday as a planned convention of the NRA got underway amid widespread outrage over the gun lobby’s widely perceived role in fostering circumstances that helped allow for the recent elementary school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. In Uvalde, 19 children and 2 adults were killed, and at least 17 others were wounded. At the time of purchase, the shooter procured his weapon legally — meaning policy change of some kind is desperately needed.
Beto O’Rourke, a former Democratic Congressman from Texas, was among those addressing crowd members at Friday’s protests. “If you have done anything good, it is the fact that you have brought us here together and we’re committing ourselves. We will defeat you and we will overcome this,” O’Rourke said, addressing leadership at the NRA and the politicians to whom the organization has donated. David Hogg, who survived the 2018 high school shooting in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people were killed, was also present for Friday’s demonstrations in Houston. Hogg said there would be a national protest over gun violence on June 11. Rochelle Garza, a Democrat running for the state attorney general post currently held by Republican Ken Paxton, also appeared. “He wants to arm teachers who are overworked and underpaid instead of doing his job. He wants to put the responsibility in their hands,” Garza remarked.
It’s true — Paxton raised the prospect of arming teachers in the aftermath of the Uvalde tragedy. Although details provided by law enforcement have been sometimes contradictory, one thing seems clear: the police presence that eventually showed up failed to stop the Uvalde shooting for at least an hour. The shooter was reportedly outside the school firing his weapon for some 12 minutes before going inside. Police apparently got to the school just two minutes after the attacker entered the building, according to newly available details — so blindly pushing to have more guns around ignores the reality that a well-armed local police force already failed to stop the incident for a considerable amount of time. It was apparently 11:35 a.m. local time when cops showed up — and it was around 12:50 p.m. local time when the attacker was killed. At the Houston protests, children carrying images of the kids killed in the Uvalde attack were also present. “Am I next?” one of the kids’ signs said. Images and video from the protests can be seen below:
Across the street from the NRA convention: “Am I next?” pic.twitter.com/bEl9vLY6gG
— Mike Hixenbaugh (@Mike_Hixenbaugh) May 27, 2022
Here at the anti-NRA protest in Houston, I just witnessed North Texas based right wing provocateur who goes by the name Chet Goldstein get ejected by the crowd for trying to disrupt the event pic.twitter.com/PkW7tLQs7p
— steven monacelli (@stevanzetti) May 27, 2022
Yeah this time is gonna be different. This is in front of the NRA convention in Houston. pic.twitter.com/3BLhKK1St9
— David Hogg 🌻 (@davidhogg111) May 27, 2022
— MelanieTorre (@melanietorre) May 27, 2022
— Ariana Garcia 🇵🇷 (@Ariana_noGrande) May 27, 2022
Featured image via @boco20 on Twitter