- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 18, 2013

The National Rifle Association issued a scathing reply to Attorney General Eric Holder’s assessment of the George Zimmerman verdict, calling the law enforcement official out for politicizing the issue and using victim Trayvon Martin to push gun control.

On Wednesday, NRA executive director Chris Cox said Mr. Holder’s call to states to review Stand Your Ground gun right laws was inappropriate, purely political and unworthy of his office.

“The attorney general fails to understand that self-defense is not a concept, it’s a fundamental human right,” Mr. Cox said, in a statement reported by The Hill. “To send a message that legitimate self-defense is to blame is unconscionable and demonstrates once again that this administration will exploit tragedies to push their political agenda.”

Mr. Holder specifically said in a Tuesday speech to the NAACP that Stand Your Ground laws enourage “violence situations to escalate” and that “it’s time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict” in communities.

Twenty-four states, including Florida, have the law. Mr. Zimmerman said he shot and killed Martin, 17, in self-defense, and was found not guilty of murder in last weekend’s verdict.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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