Meanwhile, pundits denounced gun-rights activists who said that the right to bear arms is in part a protection against government tyranny. Only a crazed militia type could possibly believe that, right? Except that — go figure — 65% of Americans see gun rights as a protection against tyranny. And only 17% say they disagree. Once again, it’s the critics who appear to be out of the mainstream.

And by out of the mainstream, I mean really out of the mainstream. According to a post-Sandy Hook Gallup poll, the NRA,with a 54% favorable rating, is actually more popular than President Obama. By contrast, Obama’s most recent approval rating from Gallup was 48%. This is particularly striking given that the NRA has faced unrelentingly hostile treatment from most press and pundits, while President Obama has received treatment that is, to put it mildly, far more generous.

Even left-Democrat Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota says he’s unsure about whether he’d support an assault weapon ban. This is, I presume, because he fears that even a blue state like Minnesota doesn’t want more restrictive gun laws, and that a different position will hurt him in the coming election.