The Gun Control debate has been a hot topic on Capitol Hill again since the Orlando shooting with a filibuster and the sit-in in the House. The measures to strengthen the requirement for tighter background checks in an attempt to keep those on the terror watch list and no fly list from purchasing weapons has, to this point, failed. Some experts feel the gun control movement and the NRA may be under even more pressure after the holiday break if the LGBT community decides to weigh in and get involved.
In shock after the Orlando night club shooting, a large number in the LGBTQ community called for tighter gun control laws. This could be a powerful adversary for the NRA, an organization seen as influential and powerful. Unlike other opponents, some U.S. social movement experts feel the LGBTQ community has the potential to make a difference and tip the scale on gun control issues. This unique community has an impressive track record with regards to successful social movements such as same-sex marriage and HIV-AIDS research and treatment. They have stood as a united front organizing and creating an intricate support network that include newspapers, websites, community centers and much more. They have an immense amount of resources, both financial and human, should they decide to take on the cause.
Other experts however, point to the fact that a growing number in the LGBTQ movement have rallied behind the right to carry a weapon and have voiced support for members to take action and learn to defend themselves. The Pink Pistols, an organization that feels everyone has the right to keep and bear arms as protected by the Second Amendment, saw an upswing in membership following the massacre in Orlando. In an article on CNN, NRA spokeswoman Jennifer Baker stated, “They [the LBGT community] understand that in order to protect themselves from the threat of terrorism in the face of government failure they need to arm themselves.”
The biggest difference in this battle lies in the fact that the LGBTQ community is divided, and have a wide array of views on gun control. Their influence on the Gun Control issue has yet to be seen.