NRA President Calls Parkland Student Activists “Terrorists”

Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images.
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images.
Over the past several months, many have praised the anti-gun violence movement led by students who survived the Feb. 14 school shooting in Parkland, FL. But for someone like the newly-elected president of the National Rifle Association, these teenagers are "terrorists."
"They call them activists. That’s what they’re calling themselves. They’re not activists — this is civil terrorism. This is the kind of thing that’s never been seen against a civil rights organization in America," Oliver North told The Washington Times.
He went on to compare the backlash against the NRA with the suffering of civil rights activists who fought for racial equality in the 1960s.
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"You go back to the terrible days of Jim Crow and those kinds of things — even there you didn’t have this kind of thing,” North said. “We didn’t have the cyberwar kind of thing that we’ve got today."
North himself knows one or two things about terrorism. The former National Security Council staffer is best known for his critical role in the Iran-Contra scandal. In the mid-1980s, the Reagan administration sold weapons to Iran despite an embargo and used a part of the profits to secretly fund the right-wing Contra guerrillas in Nicaragua to help them overthrow the government. The funding of the Contras was largely regarded as U.S.-sponsored terrorism. North, who shredded incriminating documents related to the Iran-Contra affair, was convicted in 1989 for his role in the scandal.
Several Parkland students addressed North's comments on Twitter.
David Hogg wrote about North: "#OnTheContra you would know about terrorism, wouldn't you?"
And Cameron Kasky tweeted: "Oliver North, president of the 'non-profit' NRA, was involved with the illegal sale of weapons and the diversion of proceeds from the arms sales to support the Contra rebel groups in Nicaragua. And he just called a bunch of shooting survivors 'terrorists' Meet the NRA, folks."
The Valentine's Day school shooting left 17 dead and 17 wounded. Since then, the students who survived have demanded stronger gun control measures and have criticized the NRA for lobbying against gun safety measures that could prevent future mass shootings. They've joined forces for other anti-gun violence activists, organized marches and school walkouts, encouraged people to register to vote, achieved some legislative wins, and much more.
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But some adults, like North, have gone after the teenagers for their work: insulting them, threatening to assault them, and mocking them over and over again.
The pushback is not stopping these kids, however. The future belongs to them.
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