After intense pressure from membership, the NRA has finally issued a strong statement condemming the confiscation of guns in New Orleans. Monday, September 12, 2005 National Rifle Association leader Wayne LaPierre slammed New Orleans authorities Monday for seizing legal firearms from lawful residents. "What we’ve seen in Louisiana - the breakdown of law and order in the aftermath of disaster - is exactly the kind of situation where the Second Amendment was intended to allow citizens to protect themselves, " LaPierre said. "When law enforcement isn’t available, Americans turn to the one right that protects all the others - the right to keep and bear arms," LaPierre said. "This attempt to repeal the Second Amendment should be condemned." The New York Times reported last Thursday that no civilians in New Orleans will be allowed to have guns, quoting the superintendent of police that "only law enforcement are allowed to have weapons." A Louisiana state statute allows the chief law enforcement officer to "regulate possession" of firearms during declared emergencies. "But regulate doesn’t mean confiscate," said Chris W. Cox, the NRA’s chief lobbyist. "Authorities are using that statute to do what the looters and criminals could not: disarm the law-abiding citizens of New Orleans trying to protect their homes and families," Cox said. "The NRA will not stand idly by while guns are confiscated from law-abiding people who’re trying to defend themselves," he said. "We’re exploring every legal option available to protect the rights of lawful people in New Orleans," Cox said, "and we’re taking steps to overturn such laws in every state where they exist." "Local authorities in New Orleans are turning nature’s assault on human life into man’s assault on human rights," LaPierre said. "Four million NRA members intend to stop this unconstitutional power grab."