|And a dirty dozen more|
Dana Lynn Loesch (née Eaton; pronounced like "lash") (1978–) is an American right-wing political commentator, activist, gun nut, and pundit who served as the spokeswoman of the National Rifle Association. She had formerly been an editor for Breitbart and had also been the host of her own eponymous program, Dana, on TheBlaze. She also co-founded the St. Louis branch of the Tea Party in 2009.
Loesch was, from 2017 to 2019, easily the NRA's most visible mouthpiece. Her propaganda-style rants in the NRA's television (NRATV) and social media ads plus her numerous appearances on cable television (she's made appearances on almost every network you can think of, from Fox News to CNN) showcase just how cult-like the NRA has sadly become.
Loesch actually used to be a Democrat, working on Bill Clinton's re-election campaign in 1996. However, she became disillusioned with the Democratic Party following the Monica Lewinsky scandal and 9/11 and became a Republican.
Becoming a crank
Loesch very quickly immersed herself in conservative politics in the 2000s, starting as a simple columnist for St. Louis Magazine. However, she would quite quickly graduate to the world of conservative talk radio, getting her own nationally syndicated radio show (called The Dana Show: The Conservative Alternative) on Radio America in 2008. She caught the eye of Andrew Breitbart in 2010 and was appointed editor-in-chief of his website, Big Journalism.
Loesch was hired by CNN in February 2011 to serve as a political analyst for the 2012 presidential election.
Loesch joined TheBlaze in January 2014 to host her own show, Dana. She remained with TheBlaze until November 2017.
Everyone's favorite gun girl
Loesch became a high-ranking official and spokeswoman for the NRA in 2017. Officially, she is recognized as "Special Assistant to the Executive Vice President for Public Communication."
Loesch has perfected the unique brand of NRA fearmongering that her boss Wayne LaPierre pioneered in the late 1990s and early 2000s. One particular video that first came out in June 2017 has her saying the following:
|They use their media to assassinate real news. They use their schools to teach children that their president is another Hitler. They use their movie stars and singers and comedy shows and award shows to repeat their narrative over and over again. And then they use their ex-president to endorse the resistance — all to make them march, make them protest, make them scream "Racism" and "Sexism" and "Xenophobia" and "Homophobia", to smash windows and burn cars, shut down interstates and airports, bully and terrorize the law-abiding, until the only option left is for the police to do their jobs and stop the madness. And when that happens, they'll use it as an excuse for their outrage. The only way we stop this, the only way we save our country and our freedom is to fight this violence of lies with the clenched fist of truth.|
— Dana Loesch, NRATV
Well, that is damn terrifying, and borders on fascism. Multiple sources, including Black Lives Matter, former Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau (not the Iron Man director), and U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, condemned the video, claiming that it was promoting violence against liberals, and a petition was started to have it removed from Facebook. Even some fellow Republicans were offended. Loesch has, of course, defended herself, claiming that she was condemning violence, not condoning it, and that she was not at all promoting violence against anyone.
She rendered her arguments null and void when she appeared in a second video:
|Recently, the New York Times in its bid to remain relevant and influential, tried to disrupt the narrative on fake news by promoting itself as truth. Who are you fooling, New York Times? NRATV responded to that garbage immediately with a video of their own, and in response to that dose of truth, Eileen Murphy, a spokeswoman for the New York Times, said — and I quote — 'Our commitment to the truth isn't new. It dates back 166 years. And each and every story in the NRA's video, from Benghazi to crime in Chicago, was covered in deep and rich detail by Times reporters.' Oh, New York Times? Because on September 11, 2012, you ran with the fake news that the terror attack in Benghazi was caused by a 14-minute movie trailer on YouTube! You published that while men like Chris Paronto, John Teegan, and Mark Geist — contractors who were actually on the ground in Benghazi — set you straight that this was a terror attack. In fact, New York Times — you ever dutiful shill for the Left — you get brownie points for continuing Hillary Clinton's debunked blame game even after e-mails produced showed her admitted to her own daughter that this was not the result of a video, but rather a terror attack! Please, tell me all about how you covered this story in 'rich, deep detail'! Well, you're embarrassing your profession by continuing a narrative that your boss lady has given up already! One more example on your 'deep, rich detail', New York Times: you always blame the gun when publishing stories on the Chicago crime rate, and refuse to acknowledge the fall of the prosecution rate for felony crimes. You refuse to acknowledge when the Chicago Police Superintendent excoriated judges for making cops' jobs harder by releasing violent offenders over and over again. Story after story, to say nothing of your inability to delve into that 'deep, rich detail' when using the term "assault rifle" as your undefinable, go-to scary buzzword for all guns. We the people have had it! We've had it with your narratives, your propaganda, your fake news… we've had it with your constant protection of your Democrat overlords. Your refusal to acknowledge any truth that upsets the fragile construct that you believe is real life. And we've had it with your pretentious tone-deaf assertion that you are, in any way, truth or fact-based journalism! Consider this the shot across your proverbial bow: we're going to fisk[sic] the New York Times and find out just what 'deep, rich' means to this old gray hag, this dishonest, untrustworthy rag that has subsisted on the welfare of mediocrity for one, two, three more decades? We're going to laser-focus on your so-called honest pursuit of truth. In short - we're coming for you.|
— Dana Loesch, NRA News
So, first, she totally doesn't advocate violence against liberals, and now, in a rant that is chock-full of half-truths and straight-up bullshit, she totally isn't making actual violent threats against free press.
The NRA shut down its "NRATV" arm in June 2019, with the organization dismissing her as spokeswoman. However, she continues to spew out her wingnuttery on her daily radio show, which in 2021 expanded its coverage as many stations picked it up as a replacement for Rush Limbaugh. She also bitches on Twitter about how wingnuts like her are being "silenced" and says "God bless" to anyone who criticizes her views, then (usually) blocks them. She is married to Chris Loesch, who is just of a gun nut and wingnut as her, also sending their Twitter brigade after anyone who calls them out.
- In the aftermath of the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida in February 2018, while speaking at that year's CPAC, she accused the news media of "loving" school shootings for the sake of getting ratings. Not long after this, she appeared on CNN in an interview with Alisyn Camerota, who harshly denounced Loesch's statements, with Loesch immediately turning around and attacking Camerota for her comments, claiming that she was attacking her and the NRA.
- She once claimed that Martin Luther King might still be alive if he'd had a gun with him. Seriously.
- She is absolutely convinced that gun control is racist, sexist and discriminatory.
- She constantly rants about the supposed liberal bias in the mainstream media.
- She had made negative comments about feminism in the past, once declaring that feminism was "dead" and that the goal of modern feminism was to "subjugate men."
- While still on TheBlaze, she accused the "godless Left" of defending Jihadism in the wake of the terror attack in San Bernardino, calling them "tragedy dry-humping whores."
- She once claimed that if religious liberty wasn't protected, it could be possible for gays to be "stoned in the streets." On the topic of religious liberty, she also once claimed that marriage was a religious civil liberty that shouldn't be granted by government.
- She once called Elizabeth Warren a "racist hypocrite" for attacking Jeff Sessions… and also called her a "basic skinwalker" (which can be considered a Native American slur in this context.[note 1])
- She once claimed that the police were justified in their murder of Philando Castile because he "smelled like marijuana." In fact, she is arguably pro-murder: one could call her a murderer and she would not care.
- Loesch has claimed to be part-Cherokee.
- Flyover Nation by Dana Loesch (2016) Penguin Books. p. 176. ISBN 9780399563898.
- Former NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch, a rising right-wing radio star, doesn’t care if you call her a murderer by Manuel Roig-Franzia (August 30, 2021) The Washington Post.