The Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders

Double edged shield: GOP candidates remain silent about the gun-free Republican convention

in Editorials/Our Voices/Showcase by

Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump, left, and Sen. Ted Cruz during the GOP presidential primary debate at the University of Miami’s Bank United Center in Coral Gables, Fla., on Thursday, March 10, 2016. (Pedro Portal/El Nuevo Herald/TNS)

Where is a good place to tote a gun in accordance with the GOP nominees? Public universities? Yes. Mental hospitals? Yes. The Republican convention in Cleveland this summer? No. According to the New York Times, secret service and the arena hosting the convention have banned firearms inside of the Republican Convention.

Donald Trump was quoted by the Washington Post saying, “I will get rid of gun-free zones on schools, and — you have to — and on military bases.” Ted Cruz said that he wouldn’t “cut a deal with your Second Amendment rights.” The GOP candidates are usually active in criticizing gun control, but they have remained silent about the gun-free zone.

In January, Obama issued an executive order requiring unlicensed gun-sellers to get federally licensed. It also mandated that background checks needed to be done during any gun sale. According to the White House this includes gun sales, “from a store, at gun shows, or over the Internet.”  Less than two days after Obama issued the order, Ted Cruz criticized him for attacking gun purchasers.

While Cruz was quick to attack Obama’s order, it has been over ten days since the convention was deemed “gun free,” and the Republicans haven’t voiced their outrage, or said anything about it. They have argued over the aesthetics of their respective wives, flip-flopped their views on abortion, and threatened to cut the Environmental Protection Agencybut they remain oddly silent about prohibiting weapons at their convention.

Right now, there is a petition on Change.org pushing for gun liberty inside of the GOP convention hall this summer. The petition has over 50,000 signatures. Although Donald Trump vehemently poses as the voice of the common blue collar workers, and Cruz has said, “I have never and will never support banning guns,” the candidates have not acknowledged the petition made by their supporters.

According to the Gun Violence archive, over 3,000 people have died at the hands of gun violence on US soil this year alone. Does the GOP really believe that the second amendment protects US citizens if they want their convention to be gun-free?  

Republicans continue to criticize gun control, except when it protects them, on stage, in the line of fire that mentally ill patients and college students stand in every day.

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