Generation Progress applauds the announcement that New York State Attorney General Letitia James filed a lawsuit to dissolve the National Rifle Association (NRA) following an 18-month investigation. The investigation and subsequent lawsuit reflect the tireless work by young people to expose the organization’s corruption.

The United States is facing a gun violence epidemic that kills over forty thousand people per year and takes many forms, including domestic violence and intimate partner violence; mass shootings in schools and other places of gathering; everyday gun violence that disproportionately impacts Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color; and state-sanctioned police violence against Black Americans that has sparked the nationwide uprisings for racial justice in recent months.

Young Americans, who are disproportionately likely to be victims of gun violence themselves, have been steadfast leaders in local and national movements to combat this epidemic—but the NRA has consistently refused to acknowledge any problem with gun violence in this country. The organization has instead continued to encourage Americans to purchase more firearms while opposing common-sense gun reforms—all as a result of its blind allegiance to the corporate gun lobby and its own financial interests.

Brent J. Cohen, the executive director of Generation Progress, issued the following statement on the news:

“The decision by Attorney General James is a victory for young people throughout this country who have organized, protested, and spoken out against the gun violence epidemic. Young people deserve to feel safe in their homes, their neighborhoods, and their schools, and the NRA’s political spending and dangerous opposition to any action to combat gun violence has halted meaningful progress on this issue at the federal level for many years. Thankfully, the political power and influence of the NRA is waning rapidly, in large part because of the efforts of young activists to expose their corruption, including by our colleagues at March For Our Lives. This decision is a critical step forward and it is a signal that the tides are changing in the larger fight to end gun violence.”

For more information or to speak with an expert, contact eleach@americanprogress.org.

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