The above statement by NRA spokesperson Jacqueline Otto was issued on Friday, February 15th and aimed directly at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), for their decades old practice of asking simple safety questions about gun ownership during kids' routine check-ups.
"About 55 children die a week as a result of gun violence," AAP President Thomas McInerny told The Hill.
"For us, that's a big problem."
McInerny's group, which represents 60,000 U.S. pediatricians, has recommended asking patients about guns for decades in its clinical guidelines. The practice has a long history in U.S. medicine, McInerny said.
"If there's a gun in the house, a family member is three times more likely to die from a gunshot wound [than] an intruder," he added. "We advise parents about car safety seats, about bicycle helmets, and about guns.
It's just part of our prevention frame of mind."
If I had young children and owned a gun (I don't), I would welcome my pediatrician's questions and safety tips. As a parent and the person responsible for the safety and well being of my child, my question is why wouldn't a parent want to be asked and advised on proper gun safety and storage, what is the downside?
But as the gun-control debate simmers in Washington, conservative lawmakers said pediatricians go too far when they inquire about family firearms.
King, criticizing Obama's healthcare law, suggested that doctors' practice of asking about guns could ultimately help the government surveil citizens.
"What they're doing is compiling a record that, one day, the Obama administration or a succeeding administration could tap into," King said. "Who is getting those records? They will be in ObamaCare's database file. That's part of that."
"Are they going to start asking if [patients] are Republicans or Democrats?" said Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), another member of the Judiciary Committee. "Asking questions that are none of the pediatricians' business is out of bounds."
"It's not their business," said Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), a member of the House Judiciary Committee. "It's like asking, 'Do people pray in your home? Do they voice opinions contrary to the [Obama] administration?'"
The black helicopters haven't been seen in my neighborhood and I don't expect them anytime soon. The fantastical leap from gun safety questions to political affiliations, religion and more Obamacare scare tactics is incomprehensible to me.
But I'm not paranoid.
Luckily there are some GOP lawmakers who see this practice by the AAP for what it is; prevention.
Contrary to many of their colleagues, some GOP lawmakers who practice medicine sympathized with that view this week.
"Our pediatricians do a fabulous job," said Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.), an OBGYN with an "A" rating from the NRA. "In the spirit of knowing that maybe there were guns in the home, to advise a parent or a legal guardian about gun safety, I think I understand."
"If I'm a pediatrician, I want to make sure the kids I take care of are safe," said Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-Tenn.), a physician. "So having a discussion about all types of things ...
I don't have a problem with it."
Thank you Rep. DesJarlais, neither do I.