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No, NRA Cannot Remove Board Members. Only Members Can, and it’s Hard.

The media is of course delighting on giving NRA a black eye over Ted Nugent’s antics. CSGV, being liars, demand NRA remove Nugent from the Board. Except there is no provision by which “NRA” can remove a board member. I’m sure they know this and simply hope that their low-information, frothing at the mouth followers aren’t wise to the bullshit CSGV spends all day spewing on social media.

Now, NRA’s bylaws do outline a recall process. There’s currently one going on against Grover Norquist because he’s apparently too much of a muslim lover, or some other fever swamp bullshit (his wife is Palestinian). So if we wanted to recall Nugent, what’s the process? It’s not easy, and it would cost the NRA a lot of money. In truth it’s far easier just to wait for him to be up and vote him out. Here’s the process according to my copy of NRA’s bylaws:

  • You have to get the signatures of no less than 450 voting NRA members.
  • You need at least 100 signatures from three different states. For example, you’d have to get 100 signatures from, say, Texas members, 100 from Pennsylvania members, and 100 from Tennessee.
  • None of the signatures can be dated before the last Annual Meeting.
  • You must submit the completed petition to the Secretary no less than 150 days before the next Annual Meeting (so it’s too late for this year).
  • The petition must be ruled valid, which means you realistically will need to collect closer to 700 signatures, since you’ll get people signing who think they are voting members, but aren’t.
  • The Secretary has to arrange a hearing within 30 days, where both sides testimony are recorded, and a recommendation made as to final disposition.
  • The Secretary then has to mail recall ballots to all voting NRA members. It will also have a packet that will also contain letters explaining the accusations and defenses. Note that this would cost NRA a lot of money.
  • A majority of ballots have to be in favor of recall, after which the Board of Directors would appoint an interim replacement.

Board members only serve three year terms. This is an inefficient way to remove a Board member. In truth, if you can’t get rid of them through the normal Board electoral process, your petition will probably fail, and then you will have made NRA spend a lot of your money for naught. I would like to see Nugent off the Board, but I wouldn’t start, nor sign a recall petition to do so. Why? Because I think it would fail. In this era of Trump, preceded by years of jackbooted PC thought policing, I don’t think the membership have much patience for “you can’t say that.” People are not in a mood to be persuaded, or to think rationally about things like this.

UPDATE: Ted Nugent is actually up for election this year. If you want to get rid of him, tell everyone far and wide not to vote for him.

GOA Sides With the Anti-Gunners

Opposition to the McAuliffe deal has been nearly universal on the anti-gun side. Even Bloomberg’s Everytown, which is generally willing to bend to reality much of the time is pretty angry about it. I don’t blame them. If I were in their shoes, I’d be pretty pissed off too if a big issue like reciprocity was traded for the trifle they got in return. It would be like if a Governor we backed agreed to an assault weapons ban in exchange for some extra money for public ranges and more wildlife conservation.

But the fact that the anti-gun groups are engaged in an effort to twist McAuliffe’s arm out of the deal doesn’t stop a group like Gun Owners of America from joining them. They are urging their members to call their representatives and senators to oppose the deal. We’re fortunate that it has passed the Senate, so I’m not certain GOA had too much of a negative effect.

Their logic for opposition relies on two items. The first is that the voluntary checks is just the first step toward making them mandatory. I’ve long said, legislatures can always pass gun control in the future, and we know they already want to ban private transferring of firearms. The key is whether the concession weakens your position and arguments. Hate to tell you all, but when we argued that NICS would be the bees knees, in leu of waiting periods, we already largely made that concession. State police at gun shows to do voluntary checks doesn’t really further weaken our position. The camel got his nose under this particular tent in 1994.

GOA’s other premise is that there’s no state analogue mens rea requirement of “knowingly” in the state mirror to the Domestic Violence Restraining Order prohibitions from the Lautenberg Amendment. Looking at the federal statute, 18 USC 922(g)(8), I’m not seeing where it says knowingly. The Virginia bill does in fact say “knowingly.” I’m pretty sure if you can show that the person knew they were subject of a DVRO, and knew they were in possession of a firearm, the mens rea requirement is fulfilled. I admit, I don’t really understand GOA’s argument here. Proving mens rea is always part of the state’s burden for a serious offense even if the statute does not explicitly say so.

So if this deal ends up tanked, and we lose all that reciprocity, you’ll be able to thank Larry Pratt right alongside Mike Bloomberg, Josh Horwtiz, and Ladd Everitt.

A Reminder: Comcast is Evil and You Shouldn’t Give Them Money

As if NRA didn’t have enough problems with the Great American Outdoor Show, with the Mayor of Harrisburg, Eric Papenfuse, trying to shake NRA down, Comcast Corporation, which owns NBC, MSNBC, and whose CEO is a huge Obama bundler and Democratic insider, decided they didn’t want to miss out on jerking NRA around either, because their ad showed pictures of the air gun range they run for the kids.

If I were Republican lawmakers in the area, I’d start to look into Comcast’s monopolistic practices. I’m thinking they might need a few more regulations. If they want to run their company in a partisan manner, they are free too. We should also regulate them in a partisan manner, in that instance.

I cut the cord years ago, and I’m glad I’m no longer forking over more than a hundred bucks a month for their shitty product. I get that for a lot of people, there’s no other choice for high-speed Internet, but if you can swing it, cut the cord! Stop giving money to a partisan hack of a company everyone hates and who frankly hates you too.

New NRA Ad Hits Obama and Hillary

Saying what it means when politicians endorse the Australian and British models:

In the real world, we call this “truth.” In Dan Gross’s world, which is not the real world the rest of us live in, he’s channeling Baghdad Bob:

Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said the gun lobby’s rhetoric “boggles his mind” and is “beyond hyperbole.”

“Their world is crumbling around them,” Gross said. “So they resort to painting this inaccurate picture that everyone wants to take your guns away.”

Don’t ever let anyone tell you no one wants to take your guns.

NRA’s First Ad of the New Year

NRA has gotten a lot better about technology issues than was the case several years ago, but they still have a ways to go. This video was pitched to us as the first anti-Hillary ad of the New Year:

While I’m glad the video also appears on YouTube, it should be the YouTube video being pitched to the media in order to drive up views and increase the chance that more people will be exposed to the ad. It doesn’t really help any to direct media contacts to NRA’s Google drive. I also think the release probably should have been today, when people are finished with the holidays.

Cultural Bundling and the RKBA

This latest Dana Loesch video from NRA:

This has me thinking back a few days ago to Ken White’s article over at Popehat originally, but now in the LA Times as an op-ed, which I linked to in yesterday’s news post.

First, we could stop culture-bundling. We culture-bundle when we use one political issue as shorthand for a big group of cultural and social values. Our unproductive talk about guns is rife with this. Gun control advocates don’t just attack support for guns; they attack conservative, Republican, rural and religious values.

I get at this point in our political discourse, railing against this video is essentially pissing at the wind. The Obama Administration has successfully driven the sanity of this country’s body politic off a cliff.

So that brings us back to cultural bundling. I get that the prayer shaming that followed the attack in San Bernardino made that issue tangentially gun related. But should Obamacare be an NRA issue? Why use Dana Loesch to drag NRA into all these other right issues that have exactly shit to do with the Second Amendment?

If there’s anything that’s at all certain in politics, it’s that there is no such thing as permanent majorities. Without support from Democrats and people on the center-left, there will be no way to permanently secure the Second Amendment from the depredations of those who oppose it. NRA is tying (Loesching?) the Second Amendment to the fortunes of the conservative movement. It may be successful short term, but I worry NRA is shooting itself and the Second Amendment in the foot long term.

Only Makes Us Stronger

Long time readers may know I’m a fan of Professor Brian Anse Patrick’s books. “Rise of the Anti-Media” is absolutely a must read for People of the Gun. But there is another book of his that today might be more relevant. With the media and the left in full overdrive to demonize the NRA, it is a good time to take a fresh look at Prof. Patrick’s book, “The NRA and the Media”. Here’s the summary:

 

 

Were it not for negative media coverage from elite American news organizations, the National Rifle Association and American gun culture would not be in the position of strength they enjoy today. The more negative coverage the elite press have dished out, the more people have been attracted to NRA and gun culture. Brian Anse Patrick, Professor of Communication at University of Toledo, presents the evidence for this startling case. Not only are the elite media biased towards NRA, they have helped mobilize American gun culture, making it one of the most successful social movements of modern times. In this e-edition, with a new foreword from the author, Dr. Patrick makes his case. The evidence is incontrovertible and based on scientific content analysis of ten years of actual coverage.

Over at PJ Media, Roger Simon provides some anecdotal evidence for this theory, writing “How the ‘New York Times’ and Loretta Lynch Made Me Join the NRA.” So don’t worry too much about the trolling clickbait from the New York Media. If Prof. Patrick’s theory is right, and I think it is, all this will only make our cause stronger in the end.

Pennsylvanians: Don’t Forget Tomorrow’s Elections

NRA has endorsed candidates in the off-year elections tomorrow, November 3rd. It is very important for every gun voter to show up this year. PVF’s web site looks like it’s finally correct, and has all the endorsed candidates. FOAC also has their slate of candidates up, with some further local races you might want to pay attention to. We elect judges in Pennsylvania, and that’s mostly what this election is about. The Supreme Court plays a big role in drawing of districts, and realize that if the Dems manage to take full control of this state in their current “wild-eyed leftist and loving them some gun control” incarnation, your gun rights will be finished. This is no exaggeration. The important statewide candidates:

Supreme Court

  • Anne Covey (R)
  • Michael George (R)
  • Judith Olson (R)

Superior Court

  • Emil Giordano (R)

Commonwealth Court

  • Paul Lalley (R)

Also, if you live in State Senate District 37, which comprises parts of Allegheny and Washington counties, you have a special election tomorrow where Guy Reschenthaler (R) is the NRA and FOAC endorsed candidate.

Rumors of NRA’s Demise are Greatly Exaggerated

A lot of ink has been spilled over Professor Adam Winkler’s WaPo article predicting the demise of the NRA. Both John LottBob Owens, and Eugene Volokh have taken on Prof. Winkler’s assertions. I think one of the big mistakes Winkler makes is assuming NRA’s locus of power is rural. It is not. It is suburban. I wish I could recall the citation to support that claim, but it’s a true claim. NRA’s power is weak in large metropolitan areas centered around restrictive cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, but in other more permissive metro areas, you’ll actually find where NRA gets is numbers. In Pennsylvania, the Pittsburgh metro area is where NRA gets its big numbers. I’m sure you’ll find the same thing around Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston. Probably Phoenix too.

I tend to agree with Eugene Volokh’s position, that one can’t assume public opinion among minority groups is static. NRA was doing just fine when whites had a similar polling disparity on this issue. But that’s not to say NRA doesn’t have challenges ahead. Here are, as I see it, the big threats to NRA going forward:

  • Bloomberg is able and willing to spend big on the issue, and our movement is not one of rich elites. Gun folks tend to be middle-to-upper-middle class. You’ll find some of us in the millionaire to multimillionaire class, but you won’t find many of us at all among the billionaire class.
  • NRA’s power has traditionally been rooted in its ability to cultivate and deliver a large single-issue voting base that can swing close elections. It could do that because it had members in both parties. All the positive polling and new gun owners in the world aren’t going to help us if they don’t vote on the issue. If you’re a gun owner, and still voting for anti-gun progressives because of other issues, even if you don’t really agree with gun control, your opinion isn’t worth much to the movement because you’re not voting on it. Increasingly, Democratic politicians are believing that NRA’s numbers are baked into the existing Republican numbers, and that NRA can’t find enough new single-issue voters, or enough Democratic voters, to hurt them. NRA absolutely has to find more single-issue voters among all these new gun owners and new and growing gun culture demographics.
  • NRA’s membership is aging. Young people are not joiners and they do not participate in civil society. This is a problem facing all civic organizations, not just NRA. But it’s a nut that will have to be cracked. Eventually Wayne LaPierre will need to retire and let a younger face lead the NRA. I’ve never really felt like Wayne has spoken to my generation, and I’m 41 years old. NRA is also desparately in need of fresh ideas on the technology front. If you’re still doing cold calling for GOTV you’re not reaching young people, no matter how sophisticated your cold call system may be. The Orange Postcard is an NRA institution, but if you’re using mail, you are definitely not reaching young people. All my mail goes in a box until its time to sort it, and 90% of it is junk. I don’t even bother reading mail.

So I don’t lay awake at night worrying too much about the things Adam Winkler was writing about. I worry about the things above.

 

How’s That “Corporate Gun Lobby” Meme Going?

This article from CNN Money destroys the notion that NRA is funded by the gun companies and is primarily concerned with selling guns for the industry. Keep this article link handy when you see this meme pop up on the Internet. It pops up often. There’s an important psychological reason that the gun control groups push this meme hard. No one really feels bad for corporations, and especially people on the left feel empowered by taking on entrenched corporate interest.

If NRA is just a corporation representing merchants of death out of make a profit, you can call them terrorists and keep smiling at yourself in the mirror. If you’re fighting to stop the tainted profits of an evil industry, you can go to bed at the end of the day feeling righteous.

But if instead you are calling millions of your fellow citizens terrorists, and fight to take away something your fellow Americans cherish and believe is very important, rather than being a Social Justice Warrior speaking truth to the corporate death machine, you instantly transform into a horrible person.

So don’t let them get away with telling themselves and their fellow travelers soothing untruths. Remember this article, and spread it forth. No one can accuse CNN of being conservative stooges.

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