The new initiative aims to advocate for gun control and to chip away at the National Rifle Association’s political influence.
Less than a month after March for Our Lives events swept through American cities to protest gun violence, a group of Hollywood stars including Alyssa Milano, Amy Schumer and Alec Baldwin have partnered with Parkland, Fla., students, activists and policy experts to launch a new initiative aimed at advocating for gun control and reducing the political influence of the National Rifle Association.
The No Rifle Association initiative (#NoRA) announced its formation and goals in a letter to NRA executive vp Wayne LaPierre on Friday. It was signed by over 130 celebrities and activists including Parkland shooting survivors David Hogg and Cameron Kasky, #MeToo founder Tarana Burke, Ashley Judd, W. Kamau Bell, Don Cheadle, Minnie Driver, Jon Favreau, Nathan Fillion, Jordan Horowitz, Jimmy Kimmel, Julianne Moore, Michael Moore, Patton Oswalt, Annabella Sciorra, Jill Soloway, Amber Tamblyn and Constance Wu.
“We’re going to shine a bright light on what you and your organization do to America. We’re going to make sure the whole world sees your bloody hands. We’re coming for your money. We’re coming for your puppets. And we’re going to win,” the strongly worded letter announces.
The letter says the #NoRA movement will “rais[e] the voices of all victims of gun violence,” citing as examples people from communities of color, which are disproportionately affected by gun violence, women who have survived domestic violence and children who have died in shootings. The letter also says that the organization intends to “counterac[t] the influence of NRA money in the political system.”
Since 1998, the NRA has spent more than $11 million in contributions to federal lawmakers and political candidates. In 2016 alone, the group spent about $54 million in the presidential and congressional races.
The formation of #NoRa follows in the footsteps of the #MeToo movement, the Time’s Up Organization and the #AskMoreofHim campaign, which have all seen starry groups of Hollywood players leveraging their platform to advocate for social change.
And gun control has proved to be a strong issue with stars and Hollywood creatives, who showed up in force during March for Our Lives events last month. Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, George Clooney and Jimmy Fallon attended the D.C. march, while Connie Britton, Laura Dern, Willow and Jaden Smith and more showed up at the L.A. edition.
Read the full letter below.
April 20, 2018
Wayne LaPierre Executive Vice President
National Rifle Association
11250 Waples Mill Road
Fairfax, VA 22030
Nineteen years ago, two teenagers stormed into Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Three of the four guns used in the shooting were legally in the possession of the shooters. There was no paperwork filed on the purchases of these weapons because they were made at a gun show from a private dealer, no background check was made because they were purchased at a gun show from a private dealer, and federal “straw buyer” regulations did not apply because the guns were purchased at a gun show from a private dealer.
Thirteen people were murdered, another twenty-four were injured in the mass shooting. Your organization continues to oppose closing the loopholes which enabled their deaths.
Two weeks later, the NRA held its convention in Denver, just ten miles away from Littleton. As seven thousand protesters gathered outside your convention, you insisted that your organization believes in “absolutely gun free” schools.
You lied, and you purchased politicians, and you fought every single basic gun reform measure that might have saved lives. And you did it because you and the gun manufacturers that fund you value money over lives.
You fought against mandatory safe storage and trigger locks that would have saved the twenty-six lives lost at Sandy Hook, because you and the gun manufacturers that fund you value money over lives.
You fought against taking weapons from those who have been served with a domestic violence restraining order, and Tiffany Wilson and many like her were shot and killed because you and the gun manufacturers that fund you value money over lives.
You fought against an assault weapons ban which could have kept 190 people in just the six shootings in Newtown, San Bernardino, Orlando, Las Vegas, Parkland, and Sutherland Springs alive because you and the gun manufacturers that fund you value money over lives.
You fought for the “stand your ground” laws that allowed Trayvon Martin’s killer to go free, because you and the gun manufacturers that fund you value money over lives.
You rolled out Dana Loesch to lament about “thousands of grieving black mothers in Chicago,” while never mentioning that you and your organization have opposed every single gun reform policy that would have made Chicago safer while demanding mandatory minimum sentences which disproportionately affect black communities because you and the gun manufacturers that fund you value money over lives.
In 2016 alone, you spent more than $50 Million on just seven elections, winning six of them. This dangerous spending started taking its toll on the first day of the Trump administration when the new president reversed executive orders that would have made it harder for those whose mental illness makes them more likely to use the weapons you hawk to obtain those weapons.
Your time signing checks in our blood is up.
Today we announce the NoRA initiative.
We’re a culture hack. We’re for moving culture into a less violent place by counteracting the influence of NRA money in the American political system. We’re for raising the voices of all victims of gun violence, both direct and indirect, in their own communities as they define them.
We’ve a diverse, non-partisan coalition of activists, artists, celebrities, writers, gun violence survivors, and policy experts. We’re going to shine a bright light on what you and your organization do to America. We’re going to make sure the whole world sees your bloody hands.
We’re coming for your money. We’re coming for your puppets.
And we’re going to win.
Today we follow in the footsteps of the brave Parkland students and those who have come before to make sure you and those marionettes whose strings you pull hear all the voices who have been hurt by the gun violence you enable. Today we lift the voices of communities of color who have been living the terrible toll of the gun violence you enable more than most without nearly the attention they deserve. Today we lift the voices of women, who you refuse to allow the safety of removing weapons from domestic abusers. Today we lift the voices of the children who died because you refused to allow your puppets to vote for mandatory safe storage, trigger locks, assault-weapons bans, or other common- sense devices and protections. Today we speak for the majority of Americans who correctly say your policies are bad for our nation.
We see you.
And we’re going to make sure everyone else does, too.
The NoRA initiative
via The Hollywood Reporter