The National Rifle Association filed a lawsuit against San Francisco Monday for branding the gun rights group as a “domestic terrorist organization” and for recommending that the city re-evaluate its financial obligations with organizations that conduct business with the lobbying group.
The NRA alleges in the lawsuit that San Francisco is violating its rights to free speech and is inappropriately impeding on its mission by attempting to “blacklist anyone linked to the NRA,” according to the New York Times.
San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution last week labeling the NRA as a “domestic terrorist” group, arguing that the interest group representing 5 million people is seeking to spread gun violence through propaganda.
“This action is an assault on all advocacy organizations across the country,” said William A. Brewer III, an attorney for the NRA, in a statement. “There can be no place in our society for this manner of behavior by government officials. Fortunately, the NRA, like all U.S. citizens, is protected by the First Amendment.”
The resolution was passed after several summer mass shootings including one at a food festival just south of San Francisco in Gilroy, California, that claimed the lives of three people.
San Francisco Supervisor Catherine Stefani, an attorney who introduced the measure on July 30 after the Gilroy shooting, said she expects the lawsuit to go nowhere.
“It’s a resolution, it’s not an ordinance, it’s nonbinding,” Stefani told the New York Times. “They misspend their members’ dues for their personal gain, they have pending investigations against them, and they continue to perpetuate a culture of sick and pervasive gun violence in this country. Their time is up.”
The resolution passed by one of the nation’s largest cities showcases where extreme politics have taken the country, as political opponents have demonized those on the other side by branding them as perpetuators of evil.
Through labeling a group of nearly 5 million Americans a “terrorist organization,” city leaders have further exposed a dark undercurrent sweeping through American politics to bleed out what is left of American civility.