Why won’t the NRA speak up for Philando Castile?
Written by Solomon Jones on June 19, 2017
On Friday, after a jury found St. Anthony, Minn., police officer Jeronimo Yanez not guilty in the fatal shooting of black motorist Philando Castile, I went numb. Then I asked a question.
Where is the National Rifle Association?
I would think Philando Castile’s death would be a rallying cry for those who support legal gun ownership. After all, Castile was exercising his constitutional right to bear arms in July 2016 when Officer Yanez stopped the vehicle Castile was riding in with his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and Reynolds’ 4-year-old daughter.
Castile, a man who was licensed to carry a gun, was shot dead by Yanez, and Minnesota Gov. Mark Drayton said what we all were thinking.
“Would this have happened if those passengers, the driver were white?” Drayton asked. “I don’t think it would have.”
Nearly two days after the shooting, the NRA released a statement saying they were waiting for the facts to be known before making a full statement on the “troubling” events.
Today, those facts are known. And the NRA’s refusal to defend a licensed black gun owner who was killed by the police speaks volumes.
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Photo: Valerie Castile, speaking outside the Ramsey County Courthouse in St Paul, Minn., after a jury acquitted Officer Jeronimo Yanez in the killing of her son, Philando Castile. Lorie Shaull/ Creative Commons