Gun Owners of America, unsurprisingly, is reacting the shooting at an African American church in Charleston this week by urging people to carry guns to church. Not only that, but GOA’s communications director Erich Pratt implies in a post on the group’s website that the church’s slain pastor, Rev. Clementa Pinckney, was partly to blame for the massacre because he had voted against a bill in the state senate that would have allowed the concealed carry of guns in churches.
A National Rifle Association board member made a similar comment yesterday.
Pratt starts off his GOA post with this image:
He goes on to attack Pinckney for being an “anti-gun activist” who opposed concealed carry in churches.
“One of the biggest problems at South Carolina church is that the potential victims were disarmed by law,” he writes. “In the Palmetto State, a concealed carry permit holder can carry in places of worship with permission from a church official. Unfortunately, the pastor was an anti-gun activist. As a state senator, the Pastor had voted against concealed carry.”
GOA is also circulating a Facebook share image urging people to carry guns to church in order to protect against attack:
UPDATE: GOA’s executive director, Larry Pratt (Erich’s father), doubled down on this argument in an interview with Sam Malone: