Wayne LaPierre's CPAC 2011 Speech

Thank you for that warm welcome.

Ladies and gentlemen, in the days after the tragic events in Tucson, the NRA refused to respond to the media's demands for reaction.

This is not the first time we have found ourselves on the receiving end of such pressure.

The reasons for our silence have never been more eloquently expressed than in the words of our President 12 years ago.


Kelly Fleming.

Jason Hunt.

Michael Cahill.

Henry Lee.

Austin Cloyd.

Gayle Du-bow-ski.

Shannon Wright.

Frederick Greene.

Stephanie Johnson.

Juan Ortiz.

Natalie Brooks.

Michael Pierson.

Ladies and gentlemen, can any of you tell me what these dozen Americans have in common?

Anybody? No? Do you even recognize their names? No one?

If you don't remember their names ... don't feel bad. Their names are a/ways forgotten.

They are the dead.

They were mothers, fathers, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters ... and every one of them was


At Virginia Tech ... at Northern Illinois University ... at Fort Hood ... at a high school ... and at a grade school ... these were the victims of five deranged killers.

And those five mass killers all had the same decisive advantage: "Gun-Free Zones" and anti-self-defense laws that protected the safety of no one except the killers ... and condemned the victims to death without so much as a prayer.

Let me say that again.

Our own policies gave more protection to the killers than to the innocent.

And now Tucson ... where the attention of the nation was again captured by the unspeakable acts of madman. Six people were murdered that day in Tucson. I wonder - can you remember their names? Already they are joining the forgotten.

Tragically, a Member of Congress and others were seriously wounded. We continue to pray for them and wish them well.

But the national media wasted no time in making a celebrity out of the deranged monster. His photograph was all over the place.

Despite the fact that every criminal profiler in the world will tell you that airing photographs of the mass murderer is the last thing the media should do. It turns a madman into a hero for every potential deranged copycat out there.

It's sick. It's wrong. And the media ought to be ashamed!

Predictably, the political opportunists rushed to advance their legislative agendas. You know what I'm talking about. Watch this video clip.


I want to be clear. That tragedy in Tucson was a terrible crime. And my heart goes out to all the victims and their loved ones. But it's time for some frank talk.

Those involved in that tragedy, and the forgotten victims of past crimes, deserve nothing less than a serious, honest conversation about what we're facing in America today. It's a discussion you won't hear on MSNBC or read in The New York Times. Because they won't admit the truth.

The media and political elites want us to believe that if we just pass another law or two, we can stop a madman bent on violence. That's dishonest. If we could legislate evil out of people's hearts, we would have done it long ago.

And when they tell you that a government ban on certain firearms or magazines will somehow make you safer ... don't you buy it, not for one second. Because it's a lie ... just like the lies they've told before.

Tucson proves it.

A few years ago, they told us that the government's so-called "Gun- Free Zones" would keep us safe from the violence of bad people. But that Tucson parking lot was within 1 ,000 feet of a school, right across the street. And that madman ignored their "Gun-Free Zone" all the way to the scene of the crime.

Their laws don't work, their lies don't ring true, and if Tucson tells us anything at all, it tells us this:

government failed.

Government has failed us with our money and our financial institutions. It has failed in running our post offices and trains. It has failed in enforcing our immigration laws, our drug laws, and our laws against violent criminals with guns. Heck, they can barely get the snow plowed.

When it comes to protecting us from the mayhem of violent madmen, government is an abject failure!

Even worse ... by its lies and laws and lack of enforcement, government policies are getting us killed ... and imprisoning us in a society of terrifying violence.

And a woman's life is in shambles because of it.

She walked into the ladies' room, at a nice hotel in Oklahoma City. As she exited the stall, the last thing she expected to see in the restroom was Juan Hose-Keene Wilson. The worst thing she could have imagined was the rape.

It gets worse. You see, they caught Wilson a short time later ... and the woman identified him. Then, it was discovered that this violent rapist had previously been arrested for felony possession of a firearm.

But rather than hand him over for federal prosecution - and a five-year mandatory sentence - he was prosecuted at the state level. Wilson did get five years - oprobation - and a woman's life was ruined.

By the time I finish this speech, two Americans will be slain ... six of our women will be forcibly raped ... 40 of us will be robbed and 50 or more will be beaten.

As soon as you leave this hall, your life is in jeopardy. Right outside these doors, 30,000 wanted felonsincluding murderers, robbers, and rapists - aratt/alking free in Washington, D.C. The government hasn't had time to serve their warrants.

This week, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray said he's troubled that more people in this city are buying firearms. He's troubled, while 30,000 bad guys are on the street ... looking for a victim.

A victim like the girl from Fairfax County, just a few miles from here. On the day after Christmas, she was raped and sodomized. She was only eight years old ... eight years old ... raped by 29-year-old Salvador Por-ti-yo Sara-via.

This notorious MS-13 Gang member skipped town after raping that girl. They finally caught him, just this week in Houston, on warrants of forcible rape and sodomy. Even though the government had him, four weeks before he raped that girl, in a Loudon County jail ... for public drunkenness.

The story gets worse. This violent gang member was an illegal immigrant who had already been deported once before. He never should have been in this country to begin with, and when they had him that should have been the end of it.

But the government's Immigration Customs Enforcement program failed to identify him. So they let Por-ti-yo Sara-via sleep off his hangover and get out of jail free ... to rape a child just a few miles west of here.

Government failed that eight-year-old girl.

We call America "the land of the free." But what is freedom, if not the freedom from fear and peril?

More than 25,000 violent crimes are committed every week, according to the FBI. During a typical week:

300 Americans are murdered.

200 of us will be killed by more than 27,000 drunk drivers.

7,800 of us are robbed.

15,000 of our neighbors are violently assaulted.

1,700 American women and girls are raped.

We have a lot of women in the audience today, so I'll ask them: How safe and free do you really feel ... walking home late at night or getting out of your car in a dark parking lot?

This is the harsh reality ... the very real danger ... we all face every day.

The media won't report it ... Charlie Sheen and Lindsey Lohan get more ratings and sponsors. The government elites won't admit it, because it doesn't help them pass another lie into law. But it's only going to get worse.

One out of four American cities are cutting their public safety expenditures. As the economy continues to lag, harsher cuts are sure to come nationwide.

Camden, New Jersey is firing almost half its police force and cops have stopped responding to many crime calls. The police chief predicts a "living hell" for Camden residents.

In Sacramento, murders are up 43 percent and the police vice unit has been eliminated.

Oakland, California laid off 80 officers and the department can't respond to burglary calls.

Los Angeles County prisoners now serve only half their sentences.

Texas is poised to slash its budget for prisons and parole officers.

Cook County, Illinois officials say that budget cuts would drastically reduce criminal prosecutions.

In Lawrence, Massachusetts, police units that focused on drugs,

domestic violence, auto theft, and gangs were eliminated.

Detroit has lost 700 law enforcement officers ... and Tulsa cut 110.

And these clowns want to ban magazines? Are you kidding me?

But that's their response to the blizzard of violent mayhem infesting our nation - one more gun law on top of all the laws already on the books. One more law that only disarms law-abiding people and makes us less safe - and makes the deranged and the violenlmore safe.

If you want proof of that, go to Mexico. Actually, don't go there, because you're likely to be beaten, tortured or murdered if you do.

For honest Mexican citizens, guns are outlawed. So drug lords are free and safe to rule the land, government officials are either on the take

or in the morgue, and honest citizens are imprisoned in their own homes ... unarmed and terrified of what may be outside.

And their terror is not coming here ... it is here!

The Justice Department called Mexico's drug cartels the "biggest organized crime threat to the United States." Over a million gang members are active in every single state in the U.S. and cartels are bringing drugs, murder, torture and mayhem to our front doors.

At our southern border, government has failed. And no matter how hard they try, the elitists in the media and in government are never going to convince us that disarming good people makes us safer.

My point is this: government has failed ... and more government is NOT the answer ... that's just more failure. What we need is more freedom!

Throughout history, one simple truth rings as loud and clear as a bell - the presence of a gun in the hand of a good person makes us all safer.

It's true. History proves it.

In 1974, a bloody shooting occurred at a school. It was an awful tragedy. Sound familiar?

Well, this particular school was in Israel. In the wake of the tragedy, Israel changed its policy. Teachers at schools and nurseries were armed. That's right. They put guns in the hands of good people. And, since 1974, there has been only one school shooting in Israel- just one in the last 37 years. And that tragedy ended when good guys with guns stopped the bad guy with a gun.

On the other hand, at Fort Hood, Texas, soldiers ... American soldiers ... were banned from carrying their firearms on base - like at all bases. Our own soldiers were left defenseless - in another "Gun-Free Zone" - against a madman on a shooting spree.

Thirteen needlessly died that day. Government can't protect us. But it can, and has, endangered us ... by restricting our freedom to protect ourselves. The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution has never been more relevant than it is today.

':.4 well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. "

Anyone who thinks the Second Amendment is outdated had better take a look at what's happening in Egypt:


Did you catch the reporter's use of the word "militia?" Citizens coming together, in the face of lawlessness, to protect their neighborhoods.

When people are abandoned by their government ... and left with broomsticks, a pot of boiling water, and a cane to protect themselves ... they join together to ensure their own common security.

The Founding Fathers had it right from the beginning. Our security is in our own hands, and is guaranteed by the bearing of arms in the hands of good people all across this country.

The presence of a firearm makes us all safer. It's just that simple ... and just that true. We see it every day and even the government elitists know it to be true.

We care about our President. So we surround him with armed protection.

We care about our money. So we surround our banks and armored cars with armed guards.

We care about our airports, office buildings, power plants, courthouses, even sports stadiums. So we surround them with armed security.

Even celebrities and the wealthy are protected by armed guards.

Do we care less about our homes, our kids, our schools, our gas stations and shopping malls? Are they less worthy of armed protection?

Government cannot provide for our full protection. Are we then, as a society, willing to live with a very certain level of death and despair, rather than empower an armed citizenry to protect us? Good guys carrying guns can and do make a difference ... and make us safer.

I say, it's time for a change ... and I mean a real change.

It's time to acknowledge what we know in our hearts to be true - that the best way to stop abad guy with a gun, is a good guy with a gun.

Just knowing there's a good guy with a gun around - a cop, a guard, a soldier ... and, yes, a law-abiding citizen with a gun - makes us feel safer ... because we are safer.

That's why we need more freedom ... and a lot less government.That's why our Second Amendment rights should be expanded ... not diminished.

That's why ... right here in this hall on this day ... I call on Congress and State Legislatures to empower the American people to ensure their own security ... by enacting legislation to grant all law-abiding Americans the Right to Carry a firearm for personal protection.

National Right to Carry is a concept long overdue in the face of government's failure to provide for the security of its citizens. More good people carrying firearms not only gives the law-abiding a fighting chance against violent criminals ... it helps protect everyone.

Recent history proves it. Right now, nearly 7 million law-abiding Americans legally carry a concealed firearm, in almost every state in the country. And across the board, violent crime in jurisdictions that recognize the right to carry is lower than in areas that prevent it. The whole flock is safer when the wolves can't tell the difference between the lions and the lambs.

The right to carry proves that empowering Americans - giving them the freedom to protect themselves -

protects us all.

So to those who would attempt to score political points on the heels of tragic violence, I say this: No more! No more lies and laws and government failure.

At the scene of the crime, there's only the criminal and victim. The police, although well intentioned, always come later, and the victim is always forgotten.

It's time the victims got a fighting chance. A chance Sharon should have had. Please listen closely.


That is who we fight for.

I have a right to protect myself. And, so do you. And so does every single law-abiding citizen of this great country. And I won't give up my right to exercise that freedom ... NOT one single inch!

We have a right to be safe ... a God-given right to ensure our own security and that of our friends and families.

Government has failed. But we will prevail! Because history is on our side and proves that we are right. We can and will keep our rights and keep our Nation strong and safe and free.

We will ... because, by God, we must!

Thank you! Keep fighting for freedom every day!

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful