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A rallying call has gone out to all gun owners in the United States to stand strong against an unprecedented amount of criticism.

At the National Rifle Association’s annual convention in Texas – where all the latest in personal fire power is on sale – guest speakers said the demonising of all law-abiding gun owners because of violent acts committed by a few criminals had to stop.

Former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin was among those urging NRA members to keep resisting gun control.

“The Washington establishment sneers at you, and you don’t give up. The mainstream media just doesn’t get you, and you don’t give up, you don’t retreat,” she said.

But some believe the NRA’s leadership is out of touch with the membership, particularly when they thwarted President Obama’s bid to impose background checks.

Erica Lafferty, daughter of the head teacher who died in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting offered some proof.

“The most recent polling that I’ve seen was that 74 per cent of NRA members do support the universal background check. It seems like it’s their leadership that’s kind of way more right than that and is really giving a lot of push back against it,” she claimed.

Since last year’s meeting, a national debate about gun laws sprang up after the December shooting at Sandy Hook school in Connecticut. In response the president is pushing for new gun control legislation. Those supporting the move are due to hold a rally at the convention later on Saturday.

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