The White House condemned as "repugnant and cowardly" an ad by the National Rifle Association that mentions President Barack Obama's children as receiving armed Secret Service protection.
The ad comes as Obama unveils sweeping efforts to reduce gun violence that are for the most part opposed by the NRA, the nation's leading gun rights group. It accused Obama of hypocrisy for having the Secret Service protect his children while opposing the NRA's call for more armed guards in schools.
"Most Americans agree that a president's children should not be used as pawns in a political fight. But to go so far as to make the safety of the president's children the subject of an attack ad is repugnant and cowardly," White House spokesman Jay Carney said.
The executive Vice President for US gun lobby the NRA has spoken on American television, repeating the NRA's belief that armed police should be posted in US schools following the Sandy Hook school shootings.
Speaking on NBC's Meet the Press, Wayne LaPierre said parents across America would feel better if armed police were stationed at their children's schools.
A senator said in a statement that he was stunned by the NRA's comments, according to NBC.
It is beyond belief that following the Newtown tragedy, the National Rifle Association's leaders want to fill our communities with guns and arm more Americans.The NRA points the finger of blame everywhere and anywhere it can, but they cannot escape the devastating effects of their reckless comments and irresponsible lobbying tactics. The NRA leadership is wildly out of touch with its own members, responsible gun owners, and the American public who want to close dangerous loopholes and enact common-sense gun safety reform.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says the National Rifle Association's call for armed guards in schools represents a paranoid vision of America, reports Associated Press.
He said Friday's press conference by the nation's largest gun lobby group was "a shameful evasion of the crisis facing our country."
He added that the NRA lobbyists blame "everyone but themselves" for the crisis of gun violence. He says America must rise above and demand Congress and President Barack Obama work on reasonable gun restrictions.
American Federation of Teachers criticises NRA gun call
Afterremaining silent for an entire week following the Newtown massacre, the NRA'sfirst comments were to call for more guns in our schools and our society. Thisis both irresponsible and dangerous. No matter how much money the NRA spends orpropaganda it tries to spread, one thing is clear-the NRA is not serious aboutconfronting the epidemic of gun violence in our nation.
Schools must be safe sanctuaries, not armed fortresses. Anyone who would suggest otherwise doesn't understand that our public schools must first and foremost be places where teachers can safely educate and nurture our students.