WASHINGTON (Nov. 8)
The National Rifle Association has disavowed a comment made by one of its workers that “most anti-gun and anti-hunting stuff is backed by Jews.”
The comment, made by Willis Corbett, the gun lobby’s representative in Missouri and Illinois, appeared Oct. 28 in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Corbett was discussing the gun control records of local lawmakers in preparation for Election Day, but also spoke of the NRA’s other enemies, including police chiefs, the press and the Jewish community.
The NRA’s disassociation was made in a letter Oct. 30 to the newspaper, which was supplied by the group. “The comments in this story do not represent the views of the National Rifle Association,” wrote Robert Grego, director of its field services division.
“Any inference that the (NRA) is anti-Semitic is completely false,” he added. “NRA has, for over 119 years, accepted law-abiding American men and women of all races, religions and nationalities as members.”
In addition, Grego said, “NRA was an equal opportunity association long before laws were enacted against prejudice in our nation. In fact, the NRA is the oldest civil rights organization in the United States.”
The Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith wrote the gun lobby last week without knowledge of the NRA disavowal, which the ADL considers insufficient.
Abraham Foxman, ADL’s national director, said that “the religion of those on either side of the debate is irrelevant.” Foxman also claimed that Corbett was “playing with a weapon potentially as dangerous as any gun.”