Bitter did some phone banking for GOP candidates last night for our county.  I am going to be talking to folks at my club about a few things election related.  I also need to start reaching out to forums.  Here’s a problem we have:

  1. Most young people aren’t tied to land lines.  Phone banking is only really reaching voters over 40.  In fact, a lot of traditional outreach we do as gun owners is only really reaching an older demographic.  Granted, these are typically your largest and most reliable voting base, but we also need to reach young people or we’re in trouble over the long term.
  2. The Internet is a great way to reach young people, but they are geographically very dispersed.  I can reach a lot of young people through this blog, I can even reach a lot of Pennsylvanians, but I can’t reach very many people in my own county, which is where it counts for having the most impact.

I’m actually fairly concerned that people getting most of their information and organization from the Internet will actually hamper some forms of traditional political activism, because while it’s very easy to organize on the Internet, it’s hard to organize locally.  One of the reasons the Religious Right in this country is such a powerful voting bloc is because they have one of the few localized community organizations that people are still participating with in large numbers: churches.

Our churches are the gun clubs, the gun shops and the gun shows.  We need to think up ideas on how to translate Internet activism into local political action, and we need to reach our churches.  Otherwise you can’t defeat anti-gun incumbents with pro-gun challengers and support pro-gun incumbents, which I’ve become convinced is basically the core of the gun rights movement’s political power.  To the extent that gun rights becomes a political movement in cyberspace only, I think it will become ineffective.  If we can’t figure out a way to use the Internet as a tool to organize locally, we’re doomed.