Former Republican National Committee Chairman and NRA supporter Michael Steele called the NRA's remarks "very haunting and very disturbing."
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, considered by some as a potential 2016 Republican presidential candidate, also disagreed with the NRA's position. "You don't want to make this an armed camp for kids," he said at an event in Newark Friday morning. "I don't think that's a positive example for children. We should be able to figure out other ways to enhance safety."
The differences both in perspective and approach couldn't be more divergent, folks on both sides of the issue point out.
"I think that people are hard wired differently. If you look at the world as a beautiful place and I'm in the arts, I'm a composer, I write music, I write poetry, if you believe the world's a beautiful place, your viewpoint is different than if you feel 'I have to have my guns to protect myself,' " said Hollis Thoms, 64, from Annapolis, Maryland, as he protested outside of the Willard InterContinental Hotel just after the NRA's press conference.
That's exactly the type of rhetoric that baffles Paul Martin, who commented on CNN.com.
"I am a gun owner. I would be in favor of a ban on assault type weapons, and limiting magazines to a max of 10 rounds. It's the crazies that say 'ban all weapons' that make me nervous about giving any ground at all," Martin wrote.
"Approach it reasonably, with assurances that you won't go bonkers and demand a total ban, and you might make progress. Approach it just from anger and you will be fought all the way."