National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent weighed in on controversy over a viral video showing a South Carolina deputy ripping a high school student from her desk and throwing her to the ground, claiming that the teenager "had it coming" before comparing the young student to "an animal."
Videos began circulating on social media on October 26 showing South Carolina Deputy Ben Fields dragging a 16-year-old student away from her desk and slamming her onto the ground before arresting her. The student was accused of disrupting the classroom. Following widespread outrage over the officer's conduct, Fields was fired.
In his regular column for conspiracy website WND, Nugent offered "a huge Nuge thank you and SALUTE to Columbia, South Carolina, Senior Deputy Ben Fields," calling him a "master of 'improvise, adapt and overcome' good citizen cop all good Americans have come to admire and respect."
Nugent also lobbed insults at the student, calling her a "disobedient punk," and a "brat." He suggested the student disobeyed her parents, writing, "By all these consistent indicators, how much do you want to bet she disobeyed her parents and every other authority figure her entire life, and got away with it?"
According to news reports, the student is recently orphaned, following the death of her mother.
Nugent also connected the South Carolina incident to several incidents that resulted in the death of African-Americans. Referencing the shooting death of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman, Nugent wrote, "None of my family members would attack a neighborhood watch volunteer and end up getting shot and killed."
He then connected the incident to the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner:
None of my children would steal anything from a store and then assault the shopkeeper.
None of my children would defy orders from a cop, assault him and attempt to steal his gun, then attack him and get shot in self-defense.
None of the Nugent family would sell illegal cigarettes then violently resist arrest.
Nugent also compared the South Carolina student to an animal, writing, "Obey and you won't get ripped from your desk and put under control. Act like an animal and you will end up being treated like an animal."
National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent said "losers" who don't carry a gun "get cut down by murderous maniacs like blind sheep to slaughter" in a column for WND, becoming the latest public conservative figure to blame victims of gun violence who are unarmed.
In an October 7 column headlined, "The Answer: Get A Damn Handgun," Nugent urged Americans to buy and carry guns and criticized people who are shot while unarmed. After declaring that "any law, any regulation" of guns is unconstitutional, Nugent wrote about "those losers amongst us ... [who] fall for the big lie of political correctness, and get cut down by murderous maniacs like blind sheep to slaughter":
Anything, any law, any regulation, any directive, any decree, any dastardly claim to the contrary is pure, unambiguous criminal infringement in the first degree, and I see a whole gang of criminal violators everywhere I look in our government, our courts and in pretty much every power-abusing bureaucracy out there.
Meanwhile, those losers amongst us - spinelessly discarding self-evident truth, logic, common sense and pure human instinct - continue to fall for the big lie of political correctness, and get cut down by murderous maniacs like blind sheep to slaughter.
Nugent's advice that people should arm themselves is based on his false belief that the October 1 mass shooting at Umpqua Community College (UCC) in Oregon took place in a "gun-free zone." (The campus was not a "gun-free zone," according to Newsweek, it was "common knowledge" that "many students carried guns" on campus.)
Nugent also offered advice to anyone confronted by a gunman, including this counsel: "Do not hide under tables of chairs. Do not comply with the directions from the perpetrator."
Nugent ended his column by advising readers to join the NRA, concluding, "Disarmed and helpless is an irresponsible, suicidal choice that will get you killed. Defend yourself."
Blaming unarmed victims of gun violence for not defending themselves is an increasing trend among conservatives.
GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson recently created controversy for responding to the Oregon college shooting by saying, "I would not just stand there and let him shoot me." (Although later he shared an anecdote about facing an armed robber at a fast food restaurant and recounted that he said, "I believe that you want the guy behind the counter.")
In a September 28 post on his website, discredited gun researcher John Lott -- the inventor of the debunked "More Guns, Less Crime" thesis -- blamed a robbery victim who was shot in the back for his injuries, claiming the man displayed "passive behavior" because he fled from his attacker. The victim in that case, an Army veteran, was likely paralyzed by the shooting.
Following the June 17 killing of nine people at an historic African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina, NRA board member Charles L. Cotton wrote that the victims died because the church reverend -- who was also killed in the attack -- was an advocate for gun safety laws.
National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent shared a Facebook post on September 9 showing off several cars and wrote (sic throughout): "Look closely & you shall see a huge leaking pipeline connected directly to a Saudi Prince's ass sucking massive quantities of rawcrude as I throttle relentlessly over the rotting corpses of mikeymoore & algore & all the pathetic greenies." "Greenie" is a term for an environmentalist or conservationist.
The day prior, Nugent falsely claimed in his column at The Daily Caller that fossil fuel production benefits wildlife, and wrote: "Conservation is indeed the 'wise use,' and like hunters and responsible consumers everywhere, we enjoy using God's creation wisely."
Nugent's Facebook post:
In a factually baseless column published in The Daily Caller, National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent claimed that wildlife populations increase and thrive in areas where pipelines, oil drilling, fracking, coal mining, and other forms of energy production occur, an evidence-free claim that contradicts scientific studies proving the opposite.
Nugent's September 8 column, headlined, "Flourishing Wildlife In Harmony With 'All Of The Above' Energy Production," claimed that on thousands of privately-owned properties across the country, "wildlife and flora and fauna rich wilderness thrives side by side with gas, oil, shale, coal, wind, solar and hydro driven energy production."
Nugent claimed that areas where energy production happens are actually beneficial to wildlife populations, writing, "From the lichen enhancing heat from Alaska pipelines benefitting caribou, to the game rich biodiversity of reclaimed coal mines in the east, the great fishing around oil platforms in the oceans, wildlife populations actually increase and expand as a result of energy development."
However, Nugent's anecdotal claim of a "mutually beneficial" relationship between wildlife and energy development is flatly contradicted by the numerous, well-documented threats that things like oil and gas production pose to wildlife -- including habitat loss, increased death rates, oil spills, and many more negative impacts. It also ignores the effect that unchecked climate change from burning fossil fuels poses to plants, animals, and indeed, entire ecosystems.
From Nugent's Daily Caller column:
There in the small clearing was indeed a wonderful trophy, but not the kind you can eat or hang on the wall. However, this particular trophy is appreciated by all human beings as the commodity by which Jimmy and I were able to get to Colorado for our dream elk hunt.
The squealing sounds that lured my friends up and over the mountain wasn't elk speak, but rather energy speak, as the pumpjack creaked and groaned away pumping natural gas from far beneath the pristine wilderness mountain top terrain.
Here on the vast Hill Ranch outside of Trinidad, Colorado, like thousands and thousands of privately owned properties across America, wildlife and flora and fauna rich wilderness thrives side by side with gas, oil, shale, coal, wind, solar and hydro driven energy production.
Our energy requirements and love of wild things are not only not mutually exclusive, they are mutually beneficial.
From the lichen enhancing heat from Alaska pipelines benefitting caribou, to the game rich biodiversity of reclaimed coal mines in the east, the great fishing around oil platforms in the oceans, wildlife populations actually increase and expand as a result of energy development.
Sorry Al Gore, but the polar bears floating away on the ice floe is what polar bears do, Mr. Bozo scam artist.
Ted Nugent called a black man a "mongrelboy" during an exchange on Facebook in just the latest example of the National Rifle Association board member's use of the social media platform as a launch pad for racial attacks.
Although Nugent is a columnist for several conservative and hunting outlets -- most notably, the conspiracy website WND -- he has been increasingly turning to Facebook to promote his pro-gun agenda. During his many media appearances, Nugent routinely brags about his impact on Facebook, declaring that his page is more popular than those of recording artists Taylor Swift and Beyoncé -- something that's not even close to being true.
And more and more, Nugent's social media pro-gun advocacy has been accompanied by racially inflammatory attacks.
In an August 18 post, Nugent made a typical appeal for people to join two groups whose boards he has served on: the NRA and the Crime Prevention Research Center, a pro-gun group run by discredited gun researcher John Lott. After urging his supporters to sign up as members to both, Nugent engaged with commenters, attacking one critic with a racial slur.
Although the exchange appears to have been deleted, Nugent was responding to an insult posted by a black man named Eissej Gorfu. Nugent wrote that the man's name was "another stark reminder of subhuman mongrelism gone obama," before calling him a "mongrelboy" (Nugent quotations are sic throughout this post):
It was far from the first time Nugent publicly unleashed a racially inflammatory attack. In January 2014, Nugent infamously called President Obama a "subhuman mongrel," sparking a controversy that made national headlines.
Here are eight other examples of Nugent's racially charged commentary from his Facebook page:
On August 13, Nugent attacked the "Black Lives Matter" movement, writing, "If black lives matter then let us pray that blacks stop killing raping & destroying their own. Soulless pathetic punks."
He then posted a video showing one man attacking another, claiming that it depicted Mike Brown, who was fatally shot by a police officer in 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri: "Here's the gentle giant of Ferguson in action. The world is clealy better off without such vicious devils."
When commenters pointed out that the video is not of Brown -- it's a hoax that circulated in fringe right-wing circles -- he replied, "doesnt have to be mikey. devilpunks are all the same."
In a June 24 post promoting a column that he wrote for WND in defense of using the word "nigger," Nugent wrote, "When I play my Motown guitar, I niggerup. its beautiful. Perfect. Only liars & linguistic fleebs & nazis claim otherwise."
Unsurprisingly, Nugent's Facebook page is a cesspool of racist comments from his supporters -- but Nugent actually engages with this audience.
Following a June 6 post, one commenter wrote, "uncle ted, what would happen if you were to challenge obongo to a live, televised debate?" "Obongo" is a racist name for President Obama that references his Kenyan heritage.
Nugent "liked" the man's comment and replied, "Id eat his family tree & shit sawdust."
In a June 1 conversation with a supporter, Nugent referred to Obama as a "slavedriver."
In a May 14 post, Nugent shared a photograph of an African-American child and wrote, "This is the only known photograph of me just before I attacked my guitar back in Detroit @1956. Amazing I havnt changed a lick."
In response to a commenter who wrote, "Ted, were you born a poor black child?" Nugent wrote, "dat right."
He then "liked" a series of racist comments that riffed on his picture including, "I bet you like fried chicken," "Just one question.. How did ya make the pubic hair on your head go straight?," "i didnt know you took place in the Baltimore riots ted????," and, "Ebola?"
In an April 6 post where Nugent attacked Media Matters for writing about how he called civil rights leader and MSNBC host Al Sharpton a "mongrel," Nugent "liked" a Facebook comment where someone wrote, "Isn't 'mongrel' better than 'nigger'? Can't please some people."
On November 24, 2014, the night a grand jury announced that it would not indict police officer Darren Wilson for fatally shooting Mike Brown, Nugent posted an unhinged rant on Facebook in which he offered "lessons from Ferguson," writing, "Don't let your kids growup to be thugs who think they can steal, assault & attack cops as a way of life & badge of black (dis)honor. Don't preach your racist bullshit 'no justice no peace' as blabbered by Obama's racist Czar Al Not So Sharpton & their black klansmen."
He also wrote, "dont claim that 'black lives matter' when you ignore the millions you abort & slaughter each & every day by other blacks," and concluded, "So quit killin each other you fuckin idiots. Drive safely."
Nugent also made racist comments about American Indians after some American Indian groups were involved in efforts to cancel several of his concerts in 2014 as a reaction to Nugent's misappropriation of headdresses in his performances and long history of racist commentary.
In an August 7, 2014, Facebook post, Nugent attacked the "stinkyass unclean dipshit protestors" who represented an American Indian group that protested his performance at a South Dakota music venue.
In follow-up comments, Nugent responded to a commenter who wrote, "Maybe the natives shoulda had better weapons" by writing, "less peyote less whoopin & hollerin." Nugent also characterized the "'Mexican' population" as "poor communication challenged liability babies."
National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent sided with Donald Trump in the candidate's recent feud with Fox News host Megyn Kelly, calling Trump "a good guy" and saying he turns on Kelly's show "just to look at her" and often does so naked, while loading his gun.
In the wake of Fox News' Aug. 6 Republican presidential debate, Trump and the network engaged in a short-lived feud that began when Kelly, one of the debate's three moderators, asked Trump to address his history of derogatory and sexist comments about women, including calling them "fat pigs, dogs, slobs, and disgusting animals."
After the debate, Trump ignited controversy by saying of Kelly: "You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes. Blood coming out of her -- wherever," a remark many took as a reference to menstruation. The ensuing dust-up between Trump and Kelly's employer, Fox News, ended days later following a phone call between Trump and network president Roger Ailes.
During an Aug. 12 appearance on WIBX's Keeler in the Morning, Nugent defended Trump, whom he says is his favorite presidential candidate, by making crude comments about Kellyand suggesting she may be becoming "stupid."
Nugent said, "I'm a big fan of Donald Trump because I believe in bold, aggressive, unapologetic truth. Period. And I'm not a fan of Megyn Kelly, although I often turn on Fox just to look at her. Sometimes when I'm loading my [gun ammunition] magazines, I like to just look at her. And I usually sit naked on the couch dropping hot brass on my stuff."
Nugent then criticized Kelly for asking Trump about his history of sexist comments, stating, "I'm afraid the gorgeous, stunning, otherwise professional and tuned-in Megyn Kelly absolutely fell of the cliff of political correctness when she proposed that obnoxious, meaningless, nonsensical, biased question for Donald Trump."
Nugent continued: "Megyn Kelly absolutely broke all of our hearts as only a Megyn Kelly could when she went into the status quo world. She isn't status quo, but she started acting, and sounding, and looking like one, and I don't believe she is. I think she is playing some games, either that or she's getting bad advice, either that or she's just getting stupid. Either way, Donald Trump is the good guy, currently Megyn Kelly ain't."
Like Trump, Nugent has a history of misogynist commentary. He has called Hillary Clinton a "worthless bitch" and a "toxic cunt," and labeled other women "worthless whore," "fat pig," and "dirty whore."
During his appearance on WIBX, Nugent called model and actress Charlotte McKinney a "fine-ass, greasy-ass bitch" in the context of a discussion about fast food chain Carl Jr.'s 2015 Super Bowl commercial, which featured McKinney and Nugent's music.
National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent referenced Nazi Germany's propaganda operation to claim that the worldwide outrage sparked by the killing of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe is a "lie." He made the remarks during a media tour which saw him repeatedly defended the lion's killing by a hunter who paid guides to help him shoot big game.
Nugent has been one of the very few defenders of the paid hunt that killed Cecil -- a beloved, 13-year-old lion who was a major tourist attraction at Zimbabwe's Hwange National Park. Critics have expressed outrage about several aspects of the hunt, including its questionable legality, the fact that the hunters used bait to lure Cecil out of the preserve where he was protected, that Cecil was wounded by an arrow and suffered for two days before hunters tracked and killed him with a gun, that the hunters reportedly attempted to destroy Cecil's GPS collar signifying his participation in a scientific study, and that the hunters only took Cecil's head, leaving his body to rot.
During an Aug. 4 appearance on conservative Michael Berry's radio show, Nugent said, "Every word uttered by the 'Propaganda Ministry' about this lion kill is a lie. Every word is a lie, and I can take it lick-for-lick. Lured for a game preserve? Hello, that's why they have game preserves."
The "Propaganda Ministry" (Propagandaministerium) is one name used to describe propaganda efforts in Nazi Germany run by propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. Nugent frequently invokes Goebbels in his inflammatory attacks.
Later during Berry's show, Nugent compared the killing of Cecil to the phrase, "Black Lives Matter." Nugent said, "The entire episode is such a lie. It's like 'Black Lives Matter' ... I suppose those who claim 'Black Lives Matter' don't believe that that the black lives in Chicago matter or Baltimore or Detroit or New Orleans or Washington, D.C., because as black lives are slaughtered by the hour, not a peep. Same with lions. Thousands and thousands of lions were killed in the exact same legal manner, and not a peep for one reason and one reason only, because they didn't have names."
Nugent's appearance on Berry's show was just one of a series of interviews he has recently given in which he defended the killing of Cecil. During an Aug. 3 appearance on The Frank Beckmann Show, Nugent even unfavorably compared modern-day Zimbabwe to its former incarnation as Dutch-ruled Rhodesia to help rationalize the lion's killing.
Without mentioning that Rhodesia, the territorial predecessor to Zimbabwe, was ruled by a white minority that subjugated the black African population, Nugent complained about Zimbabwe game officials who have launched an investigation into Cecil's killing.
He said, "Do you know that Zimbabwe, right after it came from Rhodesia -- they changed because [President Robert] Mugabe's gangsters took over all the Dutch African farms? It was the bread basket of Africa, the entire continent. It was the most agriculture, productive country in Africa and then when Mugabe and his Crips and Bloods moved in, it's become nothing but a cesspool of violence and murder and rape and they don't produce squat. Somebody choose a system. If you are on Mugabe's side you're weird."
Image via Flickr user Vince O'Sullivan under a Creative Commons license.
As outrage continued over the killing of tourist attraction Cecil the lion by a hunter in Zimbabwe, National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent called the controversy "a lie" and a "joke," adding, "God are people stupid."
The 13-year-old lion was killed by an American hunter after reportedly being lured outside of the confines of Hwange National Park sometime in early July. Cecil rose to fame and became a major tourist attraction after his participation in a scientific study that involved GPS tracking of his movements.
The BBC gave an account of the hunt, which involved wounding Cecil with a crossbow before killing him with a gun more than a day later, and noted that Cecil's cubs will now be killed:
He is believed to have been killed on 1 July but the carcass was not discovered until a few days later.
The ZCTF said the hunters had used bait to lure him outside Hwange National Park during a night-time pursuit.
Mr Palmer is said to have shot Cecil with a crossbow, injuring the animal. The group didn't find the wounded lion until 40 hours later, when he was shot dead with a gun.
The animal had a GPS collar fitted for a research project by UK-based Oxford University that allowed authorities to track its movements. The hunters tried to destroy it, but failed, according to the ZCTF.
On Monday, the head of the ZCTF told the BBC that Cecil "never bothered anybody" and was "one of the most beautiful animals to look at".
The six cubs of Cecil will now be killed by the new male lion in the pride, Johnny Rodrigues added, in order to encourage the lionesses to mate with him.
Controversy over the killing grew in recent days with the identification of Cecil's killer as an American dentist, leading to widespread condemnation of the man. The hunter, who previously pled guilty to a hunting-related crime in the United States, has said that he did not intend to kill Cecil. Still, the man is reportedly now wanted for poaching in Zimbabwe and may be the subject of a congressional inquiry.
On Facebook, Nugent attacked those upset by Cecil's killing on July 28, writing, "the whole story is a lie. ... I will write a full piece on this joke asap. God are people stupid."
NRA figures have previously defended controversial hunting practices. In September 2013, widespread outrage occurred after the host of NRA-sponsored hunting show Under Wild Skies, Tony Makris, shot an elephant in the face. Makris, who has longstanding ties to the NRA, responded to outrage over his hunt by comparing his critics to Hitler. NBC Sports canceled the show, citing Makris' "outrageous and unacceptable" comments.
Right-wing media darling Scott Walker has announced he is running for president. Conservative pundits have lionized Walker as a "charismatic," "sexy," "genuine hero."
National Rifle Association (NRA) board member Ted Nugent said opponents of the Confederate flag should value "substance over symbolism," and asked, "If we burned every Confederate flag today, would they stop shooting each other in Chicago?"
Nugent defended the Confederate flag on July 8 during an appearance on the Blog Talk Radio show, World Positive Thinkers, just hours before the South Carolina House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to remove the Confederate flag from the South Carolina Statehouse grounds. The flag, which FoxNews.com noted was raised on the Statehouse grounds "more than 50 years ago to protest the civil rights movement," will be removed on July 10.
Although it's been a contentious issue in South Carolina for years, momentum to remove the flag increased following the apparently racially-motivated June 17 mass shooting at the African-American Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston that left nine people dead.
During his World Positive Thinkers appearance, Nugent was asked to address calls by activists that his fellow Detroit musician Kid Rock should stop displaying the Confederate flag at concerts. Nugent said, "I believe that we always have to look at substance over symbolism and I think we have to be honest," before asking, "If we burned every Confederate flag today, would they stop shooting each other in Chicago? If we burned every Confederate flag today, would we stop sanctuary cities from accommodating murderers and rapists and savage people?"
Nugent, who said that he flies a Confederate flag at his residence, defended displaying the flag by saying, "I believe that if you believe the Confederate flag is one of honor for the Southern tradition, I believe you should have every right in the world to display that flag and wave it proudly."
On July 8, Nugent also wrote on Facebook that it was "bullshit" to remove the flag from the South Carolina Statehouse grounds.
National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent distorted recent comments President Obama made on the race issue in America to defend the use of the N-word including its racist use by former LAPD detective Mark Fuhrman.
In a June 24 column for conspiracy website WND, Nugent addressed President Obama's reference to the word "nigger" on Marc Moran's WTF podcast. Obama said, "Racism, we are not cured of it. And it's not just a matter of it not being polite to say 'nigger' in public."
Apparently misinterpreting the point Obama was making about racism, Nugent praised Obama, writing that he "is not afraid of speaking honestly without fear of politically correct word nazi's going berserk."
Nugent went on to heap praise on the word, without mentioning its long and vile association with racism. Citing himself as someone who "continue[s] to use the word nigger at one time or another," Nugent listed several well-known people, including Fuhrman, whom he said were not bound by "political correctness" in their use of the word:
Along with President Obama and my hero Richard Pryor, we join Howard Stern, Johnny Cochran, Mark Furman [sic], O.J. Simpson, Kid Rock, James Brown, the mighty Funkbrothers, Al not so Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Louis Farrakhan, Malcom X, Kanye West, Fifty Cent and pretty much every black rapper and hip hopper on earth, Chris Rock, Eddie Murphy, a few thousand NBA, NFL, MLB sports stars, legions of famous and not so famous musicians, actors, politicians, media personalities and assorted celebrities of every color, creed, ethnicity and walk of life, along with a few million others around the world who have used and continue to use the word nigger at one time or another.The dishonest referencing of the word by its first letter is the epitome of political correctness gone mad.
Fuhrman, who is now a Fox News contributor, was an LAPD homicide detective on the O.J. Simpson murder case. During Simpson's trial, the defense produced tapes of Fuhrman using the N-word more than 40 times over a 10-year period. According to the tapes, in his capacity with the LAPD, Fuhrman said things to African-Americans like, "You do what you're told, understand, nigger?" He was also recorded bragging that he liked lining up "niggers against the wall and shooting them."
In his WND column, Nugent lavishly praised the word. He wrote, "The word nigger has historically been used in a powerfully positive way when describing the proud heritage and history of deeply respected, even revered 'blackness,'" and noted that he considered it "the greatest compliment" when someone uses the word to describe his music.
Nugent added, "The word is used constantly across America in a friendly, even tribal greeting and salutation with no hint whatsoever of negativity nor hostility," and compared its use to the "'MF' word" -- a reference to "mother fucker" that he never spelled out, although his column did spell out the word "nigger" five times.
Nugent also wrote, "As blacks blow away blacks in record numbers in Chicago and other urban hellzones each weekend, does anyone have the audacity to believe that words play any role in this insane widespread criminality?" adding, "What sort of goofball could possibly believe that certain words are OK for one group of people but forbidden by others?"
On Facebook, Nugent promoted his WND column in a post that said, "When I play my Motown guitar, I niggerup."
Nugent, who has a lengthy history of racially-charged rhetoric, is correct that he has used the N-word before. In a 1990 interview with Detroit Free Press Magazine, Nugent defended the apartheid system in South Africa and said, "I use the word nigger a lot because I hang around with a lot of niggers, and they use the word nigger, and I tend to use words that communicate ... I don't mean to offend."
In a 1995 interview with Bob Mack of Grand Royal magazine, Nugent claimed "real America" was full of "working hard, playing hard, white motherfucking shit kickers, who are independent and get up in the morning," before saying of James Brown and several other African-American musicians, "Those are niggers, those are fucking spirited, genuine African-Americans."
During an interview for the release a 2002 album, Nugent reportedly said, "So when ever someone tries to claim that I'm a racist because I use the word 'nigger,' the word 'nigger' is a badge of honour where I come from."
Beyond his use of racial slurs, Nugent has called Obama a "subhuman mongrel" and has claimed that African-Americans should be racially profiled the same way members of a community might profile a breed of dog that was biting children. He also said that African-Americans could "solve the black problem" if they were more honest and law-abiding, and that the African-American community has a "mindless tendency to violence" and an inability to "read or speak clearly."
This post has been updated to include additional information.
National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent attacked President Obama and gun safety advocates for calling attention to the deaths of children from guns, calling such efforts "The Big Lie" -- a phrase associated with Nazi propaganda.
Gun accidents and homicides involving children happen far more frequently in the United States than in other affluent nations.
In a May 13 column posted on conspiracy website WND (World Net Daily), Nugent wrote, "The Big Lie about guns is that innocent kids are being gunned down or are accidentally shooting each other."
Arguing that "very few kids under the age of 10 die or are injured as a result of gun-related accidents," Nugent wrote, "The vast majority of teenagers who die as a result of guns are involved in gangs. They are punks, thugs and street rats who have dropped out of school and let out of their cages over and over again by a so-called 'justice system' gone bad."
Hitler first wrote about "the big lie" in Mein Kampf. The Nazi leader accused Jews of telling "the big lie" to corrupt "the broad masses," who he claimed "more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie." The phrase is also associated with tactics used by chief Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels.
It's hard to argue that accidental gun deaths involving children are not worth calling attention to, let alone that covering such tragedies is comparable to Nazi-style propaganda. And it is no surprise that accidental shootings involving children receive widespread media coverage, given how shocking and senseless they are.
According to a project of Everytown for Gun Safety, there have been at least 88 incidents just this year "in which a child 17 or under fired a gun unintentionally and someone was harmed as a result." In 2013, the group documented at least 100 accidental shooting deaths of children aged 14 or younger. A Mother Jones report that examined the same time period found 84 fatal gun accidents involving children aged 12 and under, 64 of which involved a child pulling the trigger, killing themselves or someone else, which debunks Nugent's claim that children are not "accidentally shooting each other."
During remarks at the National Rifle Association annual meeting, NRA board member Ted Nugent shared an analogy that involved him shooting Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid.
Nugent, who is also a spokesperson for Outdoor Channel, referenced shooting Reid during an April 12 talk at the NRA's meeting in Nashville, Tennessee, at an event called, "Freedom is not Free and We the People Must Keep It Alive!"
The NRA's annual meeting also featured speeches by GOP presidential candidates and contenders including Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Scott Walker, Rick Perry and others.
Nugent's comment came during a question and answer session where an audience member asked, "How and why did the NRA ever endorse Harry Reid to serve as the front man of Osama Obama?"
The NRA never actually endorsed Reid, but in 2010 the gun group did donate $4,000 to his reelection efforts. Any goodwill between Reid and the NRA likely ended in 2013 with Reid's introduction of legislation to expand background checks on gun sales.
In response to the question, Nugent called Reid a "lying prick," but described him as a necessary evil, stating, "If your child is dying and there is only one way to get to the doctor, would you get on Harry Reid's boat to get there? ... I'd get on the boat, get there, and then I'd shoot him."
In audio obtained by Media Matters, Nugent then further described the NRA's strategy as infallible, stating, "if you see them endorse someone like Harry Reid it's because this deceptive bastard actually stood up for our Second Amendment rights contrary to the alternative candidate." He added, "when the NRA makes a move that you're not sure about, please give them the benefit of the doubt."
The NRA is choosing to host the pinnacle event of its annual meeting at a venue that does not allow members of the public to carry firearms, a decision that stands in sharp contrast to claims from NRA leadership that "gun-free zones" are not safe and should be avoided.
The NRA will hold its annual meeting April 10 through 12 in Nashville, Tennessee, with events primarily occurring at the Music City Center, which is an exhibition hall, and the Bridgestone Arena.
Some attendees are upset that they will not be allowed to carry guns at the Bridgestone Arena during the event, due to the venue's policy prohibiting firearms, according to Nashville Public Radio.
The NRA frequently tells supporters that gun-free zones imperil their lives, enable mass shootings, and invite terrorists.
For example, during the 2015 Conservative Political Action Conference, NRA executive vice president Wayne LaPierre told the crowd that the Islamic State is "carving a bloody trail that leads to our doorstep" and suggested it is not a matter of "if" but "when" a terrorist attack will occur at "the supposedly gun-free zone of the Mall of America."
Experts in military and veteran suicide issues are criticizing National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent for claiming that veterans are committing suicide because they believe President Obama "is the enemy."
As reported by Right Wing Watch, during a speech at a Lincoln Day Dinner in Arizona last week, Nugent said, "20 - 25 of those guys kill themselves every day, and they haven't told you why, and they haven't told anybody else why, but they told me why: because the Commander-in-Chief is the enemy."
Nugent has made similar claims in the past. In 2013, during an appearance on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones' radio show, he said that veterans were killing themselves in part because Obama was "violating" the Constitution.
Several experts in military suicides strongly criticized Nugent for distorting the facts and misleading the public with his "ridiculous" commentary.