Our View: Talk about poor timing

Dec. 20, 2012 @ 09:59 AM

A story surfaced on Wednesday regarding a political group holding a rather interesting event.

Not interesting in the event itself but, rather the timing of it.

According to The Associated Press, the tea party in Asheville will be conducting a fundraising raffle for two guns, including one that was similar in nature to the one used in the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting in Connecticut.

The raffle, billed as “The Great Gun Giveaway” was posted on the tea party website on Monday along with other postings on the site about gun control and how gun-free zones do not work.

While a group holding a raffle is normal ... we see it every day ... and even raffling off guns is not outside the norm. However, with this particular raffle, the timing could not be worse.

Interestingly enough, the National Rifle Association took down its Facebook and Twitter accounts shortly after the shooting.

Officials with the Asheville Tea Party said that the event was planned before the shooting that killed 20 students and six members of the school staff.

That may be the case but, there is a thing called postponement.

We are not utilizing this space today to rally for gun control or advocate for gun rights. That will be reserved for another time and place.

With the raffle, there will be two guns that will be up for grabs. One is an AR15 semi-automatic rifle, which is similar to the gun used in the Connecticut shooting. It will include two 30-round clips and a case valued at $1,500.

The second is a .22 Magnum pistol with a 30-round clip.

Regardless, we feel this is just a poor show by the Asheville Tea Party.

Even if this event was scheduled before the shooting in Connecticut, not postponing it for a later time is cold and shameful.

Even gun advocates have questioned the timing surrounding the raffle.

One gun instructor in Asheville, Bob Plyler, told The Associated Press that there was nothing wrong with raffling guns, but he questioned the timing.

“Now might not be the best time to do something like that,” Plyler said.

And, we could not agree more.

This is not a political issue, nor is it a gun rights over gun control issue. This is a compassion issue.

This kind of event being held so close after one of the worst tragedies in recent memory — especially one involving the senseless death of children — is deplorable and it would be in the best interest of everyone if it were moved to a later date.

By Matthew Clark, for the Editorial Board

The Daily Courier Editorial Board consists of community members Jerry Brewer, Kyle Bingham, Tom Padgett, Dr. Shermaine Surratt and Cliff Strassenburg as well as Editor Matthew Clark