On Sunday, Wayne LaPierre, the executive vice president of the National Rifle Association, appeared on NBC News’ “Meet the Press” to discuss last week's mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard.
“Meet the Press” moderator David Gregory asked LaPierre, “Can it be the sliding scale where you do have armed guards there but now there’s not enough armed guards, and when it comes to schools if we only had an armed guard and we had teachers who had weapons then we could stop it? Where does it stop?”
“How could anybody look at what happened this week and say there was enough security there?" LaPierre replied. "I mean, there was one guy, a private security firm, God bless him, he ran towards the fire. There were six others that were guarding the gates. The Capitol Hill SWAT team was told to stand down. Where is the outrage about that? We need to turn 30 minutes before they bring down the shooter into seven seconds and 30 seconds.”
Rather than spurring new calls for gun control, LaPierre said, the Navy Yard slaughter should bring attention to the fact that the base was unprotected and failings in the criminal justice and mental health systems.
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“Should someone who shows mental illness like that be able to purchase a gun?” Gregory asked.
“They need to be committed is what they need to be, and if they’re committed, they’re not in the naval yard. Look, I’ve been in this whole check business for 20-some years. I said the system‘s broken for 20 years and nobody listens,” said LaPierre. He added, “The NRA supported the gun check, because we thought the mental records would be in the system, we thought criminals would be in the system and we thought people would be prosecuted. We’re in a situation now where the criminal records are not in the system. The medical records, even those adjudicated dangerous, are not in the system and nobody is prosecuted.”
The Washington Navy Yard shooting on Sept. 16 was carried out by Aaron Alexis, a lone gunman armed with a shotgun. He fatally shot 12 people and wounded three others at the headquarters of the Naval Sea Systems Command located inside the Washington Navy Yard. Alexis was killed by police, ending the shooting at 9:20 a.m., just over one hour after the mass shooting started according to the Washington Post.
Watch the full interview in the video above.