Again, figuratively. And to be clear, I don't even own a stick. But while my original post was more a show of solidarity with an academic under fire for the use of a metaphor, the more I think about National Rifle Association president Wayne LaPierre's disgraceful press conference, the more I really do want to see his head on a spit. Figuratively.
The NRA needs to fire LaPierre.
Really. That's the only responsible response to LaPierre's continued ranting, in which he blames just about everybody and anybody for our nation's epidemic of gun violence, except the firearms industry he represents. Indeed LaPierre, the head of the gun lobby, refuses to even participate in a rational debate:
President Barack Obama has tasked Vice President Joe Biden with the job of consulting with members of the Cabinet and outside organizations to come up with legislative proposals by next month.
When asked about this initiative, LaPierre said, “if it’s a panel that’s just going to be made up of a bunch of people that for the past 20 years has been trying to destroy the Second Amendment, I’m not interested in sitting on that panel…. The NRA is not going to let people lose the Second Amendment in this country.”
Gun owners do have rights, not the least of which being the right of having their opinions heard as lawmakers contemplate a legislative agenda. But LaPierre, allegedly representing America's gun owners, refuses to responsibly participate in this process. So if the NRA and its members want to be taken seriously—if they want to fulfill their civic obligations instead of obstructing them—then they need to end this embarrassment now, and fire LaPierre. Because it might be in the national interest for the people who know firearms best to make an honest contribution to the national conversation, instead of just allowing their interests to be misrepresented by a crazy, irrational ideologue.
LaPierre's head needs to roll. He needs to be hoisted on his own petard. They need to put LaPierre's head on a stick. And other violent metaphors that no sane person would ever interpret as a threat of actual violence.