The National Rifle Association began the year with a target on its back from teenagers in Parkland, Fla and it’s evidently ending it with the wrath of doctors.
One of those doctors, pathologist Judy Melinek, went viral with this fury that adds a new hashtag to the gun control movement: #ThisIsOurLane. In response to new guidelines on reducing gun violence from the American College of Physicians, the NRA tried telling “self-important anti-gun doctors to stay in their lanes.” The tweet posted just hours before a shooter killed 12 people at a bar in Thousand Oaks.
And thus, a fight was mistakenly picked.
We are not self-important: we are important to the care of others
We are not anti-gun: we are anti-bullet holes in our patients
We consult with everyone but extremists
Most upsetting, actually, is death and disability from gun violence that is unparalleled in the world https://t.co/E8qz3lewK7
— Esther Choo MD MPH (@choo_ek) November 8, 2018
Scores of doctors spoke out against the attempt to silence their experiences of saving or attempting to save patients from gunshot wounds. Melinek’s, though, went viral with three simple, powerful sentences on Saturday.
“Do you have any idea how many bullets I pull out of corpses weekly?” she tweeted. “This isn’t just my lane. It’s my fucking highway.”
Ann Coulter, attempting mental gymnastics as usual, argued back that emergency room doctors also pulling out cue balls, vines and gummy bears out of people “doesn’t make them experts on pool, horticulture or chewy candy.”
But as Dr. Sage Meyers pointed out, medical experts work to improve safety in as many realms as they can, offering their experience about what harms or kills the most. Doctors have advocated for safety issues from seat belts to prevent deaths or severe injuries from car accidents to tobacco to reduce smoking rates. Guns shouldn’t be exempt in their minds.
“We do our jobs every single day, and our job is to be an expert on what bullets do to bodies,” Melinek told the Chronicle. “We’re the ones who are called to the scene [of homicides]. We are the ones who testify in court about the pain and suffering that happens because of gun violence. We’re the ones who see the consequences of lax gun policies.”
As more institutions become vocal the country’s gun violence as a public health issue, the NRA has struggled to keep the weapon’s image a positive one. From trusted doctors to angry teenagers awakened in 2018, the NRA has an uphill battle.
12 more parents have lost their children. Another community is traumatized. I have had #enough
And I know you are, too.
This is what you can do:https://t.co/3d0wO4ytgo
— Megan Ranney MD MPH (@meganranney) November 8, 2018