The nation's foremost gun rights advocacy group could be in dire financial straits, and this news has prompted people on opposite sides of the gun control debate to respond a bit differently. While the NRA might be hoping to receive an uptick in donations from their supporters, Twitter is sending the NRA "thoughts and prayers" — echoing the words of NRA-backed politicians in the wake of each significant mass shooting that takes place in the U.S.
On Friday, Rolling Stone reported that the NRA filed a lawsuit against the state of New York, arguing that the state's actions had put it in potentially serious financial trouble. The NRA's lawsuit claimed that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was running an "overt viewpoint-based discrimination campaign" against the group, which had led to “tens of millions of dollars in damages.” This "blacklisting campaign," the gun rights advocacy group claimed, could lead to their inability to continue putting out their print media and streaming service, NRAtv, as USA Today noted.
Twitter, however, hasn't exactly responded with sympathy. Instead, several prominent users have offered the NRA a response that those who support the NRA in Congress trot out with regularity when a shooting occurs.
"Thoughts and prayers to the NRA who is saying they’re in a deep financial crisis and may be unable to exist," Chelsea Handler wrote on Twitter.
Handler went on to offer a practical resolution to the NRA's financial troubles.
"Maybe they could ask some of the Republicans they donated millions to for a loan," she wrote, suggesting Republican senators Richard Burr, Roy Blunt, Cory Gardner, and Marco Rubio.
NBA coach Steve Kerr went for a shorter message, but it carried the same sentiment.
"Don't send money......thoughts and prayers should suffice," Kerr wrote, retweeting the news about the NRA's lawsuit.
Even the man behind the campaign against the NRA, NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo, added his voice to the conversation.
@NRA goes bankrupt because of the State of New York, they'll be in my thoughts and prayers," Cuomo wrote on Twitter on Saturday. "I'll see you in court."
The NRA's lawsuit against the state of New York stemmed from a directive that Cuomo sent out in April, telling the state's Department of Financial Services to push any financial service company licensed in the state — including all banks and insurance companies — to "review any relationships they may have with the National Rifle Association" and "consider whether such ties harm their corporate reputations and jeopardize public safety."
Because of New York's importance in the financial world, then, the lawsuit claims that the governor's actions have left them without liability insurance, and that the next thing to go could be "basic bank-depository services." In the lawsuit, the NRA is claiming that Cuomo's campaign "[deprives] the NRA and its constituents of their First Amendment rights to speak freely about gun-related issues and defend the Second Amendment." It will be up to the courts to decide whether that claim holds water, but for now, the NRA is certainly getting plenty of thoughts and prayers from their detractors on Twitter.