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The Editors

Why Does the NRA Fear the Truth About Gun Violence?

A week after the gun massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, the National Rifle Association is speaking out. As well it should. If only the NRA believed in the right to free speech as fervently as it believes in the right to bear arms.

Faced with government-funded research that contradicts NRA claims on gun safety, the gun lobby moved to defund the research and silence the researchers. When news reporters tried to learn which gun shops repeatedly supply violent criminals with firearms, the NRA lobbied to have gun-trace data exempted from the Freedom of Information Act. When advocates of transparency in campaign finance proposed the Disclose Act in Congress to require disclosure of top donors to political advertising campaigns, the NRA once again marched to the beat of its own 100-round drum: The organization obtained an exemption to keep its information secret.