The National Rifle Association has championed the idea of a "good guy with a gun," but no weapons will be allowed when Vice President Mike Pence speaks at his annual meeting – Parkland, Fla., Students who say They, schools should be granted the same protection.
And in a rare case, even some NRA supporters have spoken out against the ban.
Pence will be speaking on Friday (May 4) at the annual NRA meeting in Dallas. and, of course, many attendees will be packing weapons, knives and other weapons for the event – including "more than 20 acres" of weapons exhibits, which are expected to attract 80,000 members.
But the NRA said US intelligence will coordinate security for the pence speech and will not allow weapons in the arena while it's in attendance.
"Consequently, firearms and firearms accessories, knives or weapons of any kind are prohibited in the forum before and during his time presence," said the NRA. A detailed list of prohibited items includes ammunition, drones, gun parts, firearm magazines, and even signs and glass containers.
With the exception of the pence event, legitimate firearms are permitted at the convention center and hotel. The NRA told members to comply with federal, state, and local laws.
The NRA abides by laws prohibiting firearms from visiting secret service guards, Agency spokesman Shawn Holtzclaw told The Washington Post Sunday. That includes events in open carry states like Texas, he said.
"Persons who are determined to carry firearms will not pass a designated external border checkpoint regardless of whether or not they have a ticket to the event," Holtzclaw said
Participants were similarly supported in carrying weapons during the speech of President Trump last year, restricted to the NRA in Atlanta.
The NRA, supported by Trump, has spoken out loudly in favor of more weapons in public places, including schools. The exception to the convention has stirred eyebrows and has led to skepticism among the students and at least one parent who has left his child at the Shootout on February 1
"On so many levels, that's enlightening – after the NRA, we should all want to have weapons when we're in the public eye," said Fred Guttenberg, the father of murdered parkland student Jaime Guttenberg, on Sunday , "But if they make a convention, weapons are a problem, I thought everyone would give a gun to increase security, do I miss anything?"
The NRA did not respond to a request for comment.
Matt Deitsch, who graduated from the Parkland School in 2016 and is chief strategist for the protest march, expressed similar skepticism.
"[Y] They tell me to make the VP safe, there are no weapons around, but when it comes to kids, do they want guns everywhere, can anyone explain that to me?" Deitsch said on Twitter on Saturday. "Because it sounds like the NRA wants to protect people who sell them guns, not kids."
March for Our Lives did not respond to a request for comment.
Parkland student Cameron Kasky just said Saturday on Twitter, "The NRA has become such a hilarious parody of itself." David Hogg, a Parkland student, sent out a petition on Sunday asking Pence to cancel his NRA participation.
Even gun lovers and apparent NRA members are upset about the ban. At the Texas CHL Forum, a forum for gun owners, commentators expressed their frustration.
"Of course, Republicans and so-called leaders do not trust the" good guys. "I realize that it's the Vice President, but she makes our whole argument go silly," said a commentator who identifies himself as a member of the NRA would have.
"You may disagree … but in my opinion exactly the people who claim to protect the 2A should never host an event that needs to disarm the good guys … sad .. no excuses … that leaves us look stupid, "said the commentator.
Another self-proclaimed member of the NRA agreed and said Friday: "Personally, I will not listen to him speak. I will not go anywhere that I can not carry my gun. It is essentially the largest gathering of nations for Weapons owners and law enforcement will not let legal gun owners carry weapons, because someone supposedly pro 2A thinks it's "dangerous," that's liberal logic. "
Other users answered, saying the Secret Service was just running the law.
"Look at this, imagine what a great opportunity for a rabid cannon hater to make a potshot on the VP AT t he NRA Annual Convention," said a commentator who identified himself as an NRA instructor , on Saturday. "The campaign ads would write themselves."
– Alex Horton (c) 2018, The Washington Post; Kristine Phillips contributed to this report