On November 7, 2018, the National Rifle Association (NRA) responded to a position paper on firearms written by the American College of Physicians (ACP), and published by the Annals of Internal Medicine. The NRA charged the 154,000 doctors of the ACP of being biased and uneducated on the subject. In a tweet, the NRA told “self-important anti-gun doctors to stay in their lane.” Attached to the tweet is a link to an article published by the NRA titled “Surprise: Physician Group Rehashes Same Tired Gun Control Policies.”
Within six days, the NRA was bombarded with over 21,000 replies. These replies included support for the NRA’s statement, as well as opposition. People responded with stories of the lives that were taken by bullets, and doctors responded with pictures of blood-covered floors and scarring experiences in the trauma bays of hospitals.
The uproar included tweets that highlighted many situations of gun violence and firearms misuse. The NRA tweeted, “Half of the articles in Annals of Internal Medicine are pushing for gun control.” The New York Times claims that the tweet was meant to accuse the doctors of being biased, rather than accusing them of having no authority. Dr. Laine, editor in chief of Annals of Internal Medicine, said in a statement to The New York Times, “Annals of Internal Medicine is not anti-gun; we are anti-bullet holes in people.” The advocates of firearms and gun control continue to battle, but there is no doubt that the NRA’s accusation will have a continuing influence in the country’s pursuit of a solution to gun control.