(Associated Press) The public face of the National Rifle Association implored members Saturday to never give up their weapons in the wake of recent gun control efforts in Congress that he said will “destroy us and every ounce of our freedom.”

“We will never surrender our guns, never,” Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre told several thousand people during the organization’s annual member meeting, which is part of the yearly NRA convention being held this weekend in Houston.

A defiant LaPierre said the “political and media elites” have tried to use December’s mass shooting at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school and other recent ones “to blame us, to shame us, to compromise our freedom for their agenda.”

  • Text smaller
  • Text bigger
Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.