Why is the NRA Blocking the Nomination of the Surgeon General?

Obama nominated Dr. Vivek Murthy, a physician and instructor at Harvard Medical School with a stellar reputation. The surgeon general has no influence at all over the regulation of guns. The job of the surgeon general is to educate the public about health issues by providing insightful information and to guide the federal government in its public health efforts. The regulation of guns falls exclusively under the already anemic and underfunded Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, which is in no way related to the surgeon general.

So why would the National Rifle Association be so opposed to a star physician’s nomination? Because Dr. Murthy supports stricter gun regulations. The gun lobby makes broad claims about gun ownership and how it helps the public health. Those claims don’t even hold up to the most trivial studies which clearly demonstrate that gun ownership leads to increased rates of injury and death by suicide and homicide, and has little impact on self-defense in general. In short, the NRA’s claims are bogus at best, and I personally would interpret them as fraudulent, deceptive and possibly even irresponsible. But that, of course, is only my opinion.

I have a general problem if a special interest group actively needs to block information from the public to uphold its argument or case. This is reminiscent of the 1970s, when big tobacco lobbied that smoking was not dangerous or addictive. They blocked or discredited valid studies by disinformation and a general campaign of dumbing down the public to keep their racket going as long as they could. Of course, eventually, the public figured it out and they had to concede.

The gun lobby has the same problem right now and they know it. This is the only reason I can think of why they would try to block Dr. Murthy’s nomination. They are afraid of a prominent physician doing his job and disseminating proper scientific and data-driven information to the public that would, of course, expose the gun lobby’s claims as bogus.

The NRA is blocking Dr. Murthy’s nomination because it is scared.

Leave a Reply