Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore's Christmas card has drawn a lot of controversy about gun rights in America. Reno Public Radio’s Noah Glick reports.
NOTE: The audio included of Fiore's comments on Syrian refugees is from her weekly radio talk show called Walk The Talk, which airs on KDWN 720 AM.
If you haven’t seen this card, imagine a traditional family portrait with the Fiores posed in front of a Christmas tree, wearing matching red shirts. But there is one major difference that’s stirring up debate: most everyone, including a young boy, is holding a gun.
Not everyone I talked to thought this was the best idea.
“I’m really sorry, I’m against it," said Terina Metoyer, a Reno resident I caught up with downtown. "I think it’s kind of disgusting, actually, to be promoting it in such a way. She has way too much power to be putting her personal beliefs out there like that, and a Christmas card is not the right form if you’re going to talk about it.”
“People that feel they need a gun, so be it. Gun rights are still very strong. But we’re getting overloaded with a nation that answers every problem by shooting," said Bob Lynch, another Reno resident. "I just think we’d be a hell of a lot better off society if we didn’t have all the guns.”
I also talked to residents who had no problem with the photo, including Julene Fritz and Rick Romo, who I chatted with in a noisy casino:
“The whole thing is pretty much neutral," said Fritz. "It’s like, well, if you want to get mad about guns, then why don’t we get mad about something else that’s more important, like mental health?”
“I think it’s a necessary thing," Romo chimed in. "And I think putting a ban on guns is not going to help prevent crimes with guns.”
Fiore released her Christmas photo on November 30th, just after the attack on Planned Parenthood in Colorado and just before the San Bernardino shootings. She is also making headlines because of her statements on Syrian refugees last month:
“I’m about to fly to Paris and shoot them in the head myself," Fiore said on her weekly radio talk show. "I am not OK with Syrian refugees. I’m not OK with terrorists. I’m OK with putting them down, blacken them out, just put a piece of brass in their ocular cavity and end their miserable life. I’m good with that.”
Fiore represents Assembly District 4 in Southern Nevada.