America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 8

O FFI C I A L J O UR NA L
Standing Guard

It's The Criminals, Stupid.

N

By Wayne LaPierre

Executive Vice President

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National Rifle Association.
For related articles, go to
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8

early every big city in America is
experiencing a tragic, senseless and
preventable violent crime wave of
historic proportions.
In Chicago, gun crime is up nearly 60 percent over last year. When asked about it, Mayor
Lori Lightfoot blamed " not enough access
to the things that we know build healthy and
strong families and communities. " She also trotted out the tired old lie that neighboring states
with so-called " lax gun laws " are to blame for
the criminal violence plaguing her own city.
In New York City, illegal shootings have
doubled over the last year and homicide is up
33 percent. Mayor Bill de Blasio's response was
to blame COVID-19 and then disband his city's
anti-crime unit.
In Houston, homicide is up over 46 percent,
primarily driven by gang and drug-related
murders, as well as the city's revolving-door
justice system that keeps criminals out of jail
and on the streets. The response from Mayor
Sylvester Turner and his police chief has been to
lock arms with Michael Bloomberg and attack
NRA members and law-abiding gun owners.
But here's the dirty little secret that antigun politicians and their allies in the media
won't tell you. They have the power right
now-today-to clean up their cities, save
hundreds of lives and put a virtual end to gun
crime. All they have to do is enforce existing
gun laws. That's it. Do your job.
We know it works, because it worked to
near perfection in Richmond, Va., in the late
1990s. Back then, Richmond's homicide rate
was out of control and among the highest in
the nation. Enter Project Exile-a simple and
enormously effective program that put a laser
focus on the root of the problem: criminals
with guns. Under Project Exile, if local police
arrested a drug dealer, gang banger or anyone
committing crime with a firearm in their
possession, then that criminal was immediately
subject to prosecution under federal gun laws
and stiff, mandatory prison time if found guilty.
The NRA helped fund an aggressive publicawareness campaign-billboards, radio ads
and posters-putting every criminal on notice
that if they were caught committing a crime
with a firearm, they were going to prison.
The combination of strict enforcement,
plus community and public awareness, soon
reversed Richmond's prevailing criminal culture.
In the first year alone, Project Exile resulted in
the arrest and conviction of 247 gun criminals,
the seizure of over 400 illegally possessed
guns and a staggering 33 percent reduction
in Richmond's homicide rate. Armed robberies
dropped 30 percent. A year later, the homicide
rate declined another 21 percent-nearly half of
what it had been prior to Project Exile.

FEBRUARY 2021 I AMERICA'S 1ST FREEDOM

Even Tim Kaine, who was mayor of
Richmond at the time (yes, the same Tim Kaine
who is now an anti-gun U.S. senator from
Virginia) admitted, " Project Exile is driving the
crime rate down, and that is starting to make
Richmonders believers again. "
Meanwhile, then-Deputy Attorney General
Eric Holder (yes, that Eric Holder) demeaned
Project Exile as a " cookie-cutter approach to
reducing gun violence " that wouldn't necessarily work in other cities. Which, of course,
is a lie. Criminals in Chicago, Detroit, Los
Angeles, Houston, New York and other crimeplagued cities are subject to the same federal
laws that were used to save lives in Richmond.
Recently, the acting U.S. attorney in
Brooklyn announced an effort to launch a
Project Exile-like program to combat rising
homicides. Tragically, he's being met with the
same nonsensical opposition that's plagued
many cities across the nation.
Amanda Chase, a federal defender in
Brooklyn, is doing her level best to protect
criminals at the expense of innocent New
Yorkers. According to her, " These ongoing
efforts to federalize local crimes accomplish
nothing more than securing the removal of
individuals from their communities and undermining the stability of those communities. "
Really? Removing violent criminals from city
streets undermines the stability of the community? Does she actually think the mom, sitting
at home, wondering if her child will make it
back safely from school, prefers the " stability "
of rampant criminal violence? Does she think
New Yorkers forced to navigate armed gangs
and drug dealers just to get to work or to shop
at the local store wouldn't rather those criminals be arrested, prosecuted and incarcerated?
The question for mayors of every city
plagued by criminal gun violence is obvious:
How many more have to die before you
take the one, simple, proven action that will
undeniably save lives?
You can do it right now, Mayor de Blasio,
before one more young man or woman becomes
a preventable statistic. Enforce the laws on the
books and prosecute the criminals. Protect the
innocent, Mayor Lightfoot. Safeguard your city,
Mayor Turner. You have no excuse.
In fact, your willful negligence can only
mean one thing: You don't see the human
faces behind your rising homicide statistics as
much more than political fodder in your warped
crusade against the Second Amendment. You'd
rather take guns from the law-abiding than save
lives. Your words and inaction speak volumes-
and it's a sick, tragic message, to be sure.


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America's First Freedom - February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of America's First Freedom - February 2021

Contents
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW1
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW2
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover1
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover2
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 1
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Contents
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 3
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 4
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 5
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 6
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 7
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 8
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 9
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 10
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 11
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 12
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 13
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 14
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 15
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 16
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 17
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 18
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 19
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 20
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 21
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 22
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 23
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 24
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 25
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 26
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 27
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 28
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 29
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 30
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 31
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America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 33
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America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 35
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 36
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 37
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 38
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America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 55
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 56
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover3
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover4
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW3
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW4
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