"Don’t ever underestimate the power of pissed-off teenagers," Hogg wrote on Twitter.
The New York attorney general on Thursday filed a lawsuit calling for the dissolution of the NRA and the removal of CEO Wayne LaPierre from the leadership post. Attorney General Letitia James said in her lawsuit that LaPierre and several top lieutenants engaged in a decades-long pattern of fraud to raid the coffers of the powerful gun-rights group for personal gain. James claimed her investigation found the accused used the group's funds to finance a luxury lifestyle, draining $64 million from the nonprofit in just three years. According to The Washington Post, she also asked a New York court to force LaPierre and three key deputies to repay NRA members for the amount they allegedly took.
News of this lawsuit came as a major win for gun control advocates who've long attempted to overcome the political force of the NRA. Among those rejoicing was March For Our Lives co-founder David Hogg, who survived the Parkland, Florida, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in 2018. Hogg celebrated the move in a series of tweets last week, writing: I am so happy March For Our Lives filed a complaint with the New York Attorney General over a year and a half ago Over their misuse of funds as a nonprofit. Don’t ever underestimate the power of pissed-off teenagers.
We had a huge victory this week—taking a step tword ending the NRA.— David Hogg Text “our power” to 954-954 (@davidhogg111) August 8, 2020
Thank you @TishJames
We have a long fight ahead of us but I’m going to sleep better tonight than I have in a long time.
March For Our Lives also trolled the NRA on Twitter by sending "thoughts and prayers" to the powerful pro-gun group. According to The Hill, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting survivors have time and again strongly condemned lawmakers for releasing such statements in the aftermath of mass shootings instead of taking concrete actions to prevent such incidents. "When we organized the March For Our Lives, the political establishment said our demand to dismantle the NRA was too bold. That our simple plea for elected officials to value our lives over blood-stained dollars from the NRA was somehow too radical. WE CALLED B.S," the group tweeted.
"We marched. We organized. We built a nationwide movement. We filed a complaint with the @NewYorkStateAG to investigate the NRA’s financial fraud and illegal activity. That complaint led to today’s bold action," it continued. "The NRA has no place in this country. Not in New York, not anywhere. We won’t stand for their corrupt grasp on our broken political system," the group said. "Thousands of young people have demanded an end to the NRA’s corruption that allows 40,000 Americans to die from gun violence every year."
Sending my deepest thoughts and prayers to you for this upcoming election. https://t.co/IMRoVhokBm— David Hogg Text “our power” to 954-954 (@davidhogg111) August 6, 2020
If you are an @NRA member, you shouldn’t be mad at the NY AG for following the law. You should be mad at Wayne LaPierre and corrupt executives at the NRA for violating the law and taking your membership money to spend lavishly on themselves in my district. https://t.co/KRnTOsk1G9— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) August 6, 2020
The gun-control advocacy group praised James for making the "moral choice" to take action against the NRA despite knowing that it will bring her severe backlash from gun rights activists. "Racists and misogynists with guns don’t protect us. WE protect us, and we’ll uplift the courageous leaders who use their power to protect us from violence," the organization tweeted. In the complaint submitted by the group's attorneys to the New York attorney general in November 2018, March For Our Lives alleges a "long-standing pattern of significant governance lapses at the NRA, including a pattern of related-party financial transactions over a period of years that appears to have enriched friends and relatives of key personnel in the NRA."
Responding to the lawsuit, NRA President Carolyn Meadows called it a "baseless, premeditated attack on our organization and the Second Amendment freedoms it fights to defend." Incidentally, the legal action was announced the same day March For Our Lives dropped a new advertisement in which Parkland survivor and March For Our Lives co-founder Emma González called for young protesters to continue the fight for racial justice. "When we were stuck inside we wondered, would we face the plague of gun violence again?" González says in the ad. "Will we fear gathering in our schools and our churches again? Will we be shot for the color of our skin again? But a fight for justice forced us out to fill the empty streets. It’s clear the fight for racial justice is still on, and we won’t live without it."
This morning we ran our first TV ad on Fox & Friends and Morning Joe. We’re telling those in the halls of the White House and Congress, the NRA’s boardroom, and the penthouses of 5th Avenue: young people will determine the nation's future. #OurPower pic.twitter.com/PTghirzYDY— March For Our Lives (@AMarch4OurLives) August 6, 2020