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The NRA convention starts today.  You cannot bring your weapon.

After the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting, National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre opposed gun reform, famous saying that “the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”

The NRA convention provides a perfect testing ground for this theory, but attendees aren’t allowed to bring firearms onto the convention floor. Some can’t even take them to their hotel room.

Photos of NRA CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre (left) and former NRA President Oliver North (right) are displayed during day three of the 2019 National Rifle Association convention.

Jeremy Hogan/SOPA Images via Getty Images

Several news outlets have drawn attention to the blatant irony of America’s largest gun rights group blocking legal gun owners from exercising their Second Amendment rights, in light of the Tuesday’s shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. An 18-year-old gunman has killed 19 children and two teachers, resurfacing the contentious gun debate that erupted after increasingly common mass shootings in the United States.

The NRA posted an announcement on its website explaining that the Secret Service has banned the carrying of firearms at the convention because several prominent Republicans – including former President Donald Trump – will be speaking there. Participants will be able to also have to leave their selfie sticks, toy guns, umbrellas and drones at home.

But attendees couldn’t bring their weapons even if no politicians were speaking at the event, because the George R. Brown Convention Center itself doesn’t allow any weapons on-site — a blanket restriction that includes pepper spray and mace.

Several of NRA recommended hotels have similar restrictions. Some allow guns in the room but not in the lobby or bar. Others required that they be secured and out of sight of the cleaning service. Weapons were only allowed inside if they were locked in the hotel safe. At least two of the hotels did not allow anyone other than law enforcement to carry firearms on their premises.

The NRA did not respond to a request for comment on the convention’s personal transportation restriction.

Texas is one of the easiest states to buy and carry a gun. The Uvalde shooter legally bought two AR-15s shortly after turning 18.

Gov. Greg Abbott (R) signed a bill last year allowing people to carry concealed handguns without passing a background check and proficiency test required for a license.

Private businesses in Texas can choose whether or not to allow customers to bring firearms into their establishments. Most companies that restrict guns post signs up front to inform customers of their policy.

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