The Common Good

Religious coalition takes on the gun lobby

Date: February 4, 2013

The Rev. Jim Wallis, the evangelical who heads the progressive Christian group Sojourners, took on Wayne LaPierre, the outspoken executive vice president of the National Rifle Association, directly.

LaPierre’s statement following the shooting that the “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun” is “morally mistaken” and “religiously repugnant,” Wallis said.

“The world is not full of good and bad people. That is not what our scriptures teach us,” but that each individual is both good and bad, Wallis said.

“And when we are bad or isolated or angry or furious or vengeful or politically agitated or confused or lost or deranged or unhinged, and we have the ability to get and use weapons only designed to kill large numbers of people,” Wallis continued, “our society is in great danger.”

The coalition is part of a larger movement, led by President Obama and some Democratic members of Congress, to tighten gun laws in the wake of the Newtown massacre and previous mass killings by lone gunmen in Aurora, Colo., Tuscon, Ariz., and elsewhere in the past several years.ctly.