NRA Doesn’t Do Squat for _____________

Fill in the blank, and you have a complaint I’ve heard for years, especially from those in anti-gun states.

Today, we were putting a few things away when Sebastian came across the 2010 annual reports from The NRA Foundation & Civil Rights Defense Fund. And guess what? There’s hard evidence that they are working in whatever state you’re bitching about.

We’ll take New Jersey since it’s nearby and that’s what I hear the most bitchin’ about these days. For you New Jersey shooters, The NRA Foundation spent more than $57,000 in the Garden State for shooting programs in 2010. Those grants went to 21 different organizations. The grants are only available because of participation by gun owners in programs like Friends of NRA. You get to be all social-like, laugh with fellow gun nuts, win guns, win other cool stuff, and know that your tax-deductible expenditures at said event are coming right back to your state for programs and groups in need of a little extra funding to reach new & experience shooters and get them into the community.

For the Civil Rights Defense Fund, New Jersey had 9 funded cases last year. Yes, most of them are shared expenses, but the NRA is putting up some of its limited legal dough to support the court cases for New Jersey gun owners.

19 thoughts on “NRA Doesn’t Do Squat for _____________”

  1. What about them?

    The annual reports don’t detail every grant, so I don’t know if they fund events involving them. I can tell you that at least one Massachusetts club that takes NRA cash also has a machine gun shoot. But the grant is most likely for all the training for new shooters they host.

  2. I know that you can shoot a machine gun at the NRA range. Not during normal operations, and by appointment only though.

    I was thinking more along the lines of what NRA through their defense fund and ILA are doing to fight NFA abuses; like FOPA ’86’s prohibition on newly manufactured machineguns, and various state level “uniform machinegun act” restrictions.

  3. It seem the anti NRA crowd also tends to be the attention whoring OC crowd. People who don’t actually shoot, hunt, or pass on the shooting sports. They’re people who own a firearm as a political statement and a form of protest.

    The NRA can’t fund every court case, nor should it. Sometime the accused are actually guilty and did something they shouldn’t have. They have the fund the cases which have merit, can be won, and cases where a victory would benefit all gun owners.

    Sure the NRA has made some mistakes under previous leadership, and the members spoke out and the board took action. Under LaPierre’s leadership, membership has grown 30% and it’s political capital has become the force on the hill.

    You can bash them all you want. But the other organizations out there spend 1/10 of what the NRA does on lobby and elections. Where would you be if your voice was just 10% of what it is today. You can ask Laddy or Helmke, they’ll be able to tell you.

  4. Some of the people listen and understand the value of the NRA and the NRA brand. I still hear from the guys that, “It was better when Neal Knox was in charge!” It drives me crazy! I just agree to disagree and go on from there. Such small people will never be able to grasp the enormity of what we are up against.

    I have seen men spend 1100 dollars on a Kimber and 500 more dollars on ammo and think that 25 dollars a year for NRA is to steep! (Picture me pulling my hair out)

    I support the NRA, The NRA ILA and the Friends of NRA and will continue to do so as a fat, happy Life Member!

  5. In case you didn’t notice, this post isn’t about ILA, Dave Y. And the issue of spending political capital on machine guns has been rehashed a million times over the years on this blog. I’m not going to do it now, you can go look in the archives.

    As for cases, I haven’t read every single case description from 2010, and I doubt I will get around to it. But, to be honest, many times when Civil Rights Defense Fund isn’t involved, it’s either because they don’t have enough money, the case won’t help set precedent, or the actors in the case simply refuse to ask. I knew of one big gun-related case where CRDF wanted to help out, as did another legal aid group with lots of experience, but the attorney retained didn’t want to actually fill out paperwork or be held accountable to reporting standards for the groups that were willing to fund the case. In other words, the lawyer just wanted the cash without the accountability. Regardless of the case at hand, that’s not acceptable for any group, even CRDF.

  6. David said it best about the perpetual adolescents who stand in the corner and bitch rather than dance.

    However, I will admit I quit on NRA after they did not endorse board member Bob Barr and backed McCain. Even then I did kept up on my SAF and GOA contributions. (Which are fine alternatives for those who don’t want to join NRA)

    I came back to NRA because they do so much beyond lawsuits and lobbying. While I still disagree with NRA once in a while, they are helping create the next generation of shooters and gun owners.

  7. In Maryland, NRA doesn’t do squat for gun rights.
    Hunters spending money to get access for themselves to hunting areas is fine, but it doesn’t count toward civil rights.

    Spending money for kids of shooters to shoot is fine, but it isn’t advancing the cause. That isn’t true outreach.

    Spending money on NASA employees to have a private range doesn’t benefit NRA members generally. Getting retired military access to Fort Meade doesn’t help non-military NRA members.

    I don’t begrudge anybody spending their own money on themselves, but don’t be calling it charity.

  8. Well, for me personally I would not be able to have the part time job I love without the NRA. I had to have NRA Basic Pistol Instructor certification before I could take my State’s class for Concealed Carry Instructor certification. I could not teach it if not for the NRA backed Liability insurance.

    Say want you want and I do have problems with them, but without them I would not be able to teach new shooters or people wanting the CCH permit.

    I DO love the Friends of the NRA Banquets. I also teach Boy Scouts on the Rifle Merit Badge. I know that all the money I spend there goes to worthwhile causes.

  9. dustydog,

    I would disagree with your suggestion that NRA isn’t doing anything for gun rights in MD. Just because NRA isn’t trying to pass a shall issue carry law in MD doesn’t mean NRA isn’t doing anything for gun rights in the state. Working to stop bad legislation from moving forward or being enacted into law is doing something.

    Unfortunately, the makeup of the MD legislature makes passing pro-gun legislation in the state very difficult. The state Senate has 35 Dems and 12 Repubs while the House has 98 Dems to 43 Repubs. The Republicans in the Senate last year were predicting they’d pick up 5 seats and they lost 3, including Senator Alex Mooney who was a gun rights stalwart. In addition, the Gov, Lt Gov, Atty General are all Dems.

    As someone who spent more than two decades in MD and who still has family there, I’d love to see MD repeal some of its ridiculous gun laws but it isn’t going to happen with the current makeup of the legislature.

  10. Dave Y: I was at the NRA range last thanksgiving, and the only restriction they had on FA was you had to notify the RO before going cyclic. There was some guy on the line whole I was waiting who either had one hell of a quick trigger finger or was shooting in FA.
    This may be a new policy, I only get there every couple of years.

  11. Ian, their range rules have been pretty consistent, and they prohibit it. I keep a yearly membership and shoot there regularly. The R/O’s are very good at the NRA range. There are a couple other intricacies at their range – shotguns must be “stocked” – they do require you to take aimed fire, but keep in mind it’s a 50 yard inside range. IMO they are not hostile or unfriendly to NFA; there are routinely folks there with suppressors, SBR, SBS, etc. but the upkeep on the range kind of requires them to diligently make sure rounds are going into the back stop :-)

    Nobody ever agrees with any one organization 100% of the time.

  12. Mike,

    Many of the laws in MD are probably better attacked through court cases and it is likely that there are far more sympathetic courts than the ones in MD to make those challenges. The Brown case is likely to go federal later this year.

    That the NRA’s lobbying arm does not also file suits is not a problem in my eyes.

  13. I wish I had kept the rules sheet I got. It was fairly clear on that sheet that FA was permitted with prior notification of the RO, after showing paperwork.

    I have sent an email to the contact email address for more info.

  14. For what it’s worth, Maryland will get its own post in a couple of days. I have another state scheduled today and another request that came first.

  15. “I have seen men spend 1100 dollars on a Kimber and 500 more dollars on ammo and think that 25 dollars a year for NRA is to steep! (Picture me pulling my hair out)”

    While I understand the frustration here, I happen to be one of those for whom $25 is steep…but I haven’t spent $1100 on a Kimber and $500 more on ammo. How I wish I could!

  16. A lot of it boils down to “If NRA did what I say is important I could stop criticizing them”. With real opponents to Liberty still out their shipping press releases, that’s easy to ignore and it get’s easier with practice.

    Good mention of Friends of NRA (FoNRA), I hope folks check this out, the dinners are a lot of fun. You eat (we all have to eat) you find other pro liberty people in your area, -and- see shiny gun-stuff. That’s a trifecta of an evening, if you haven’t been to one you can find a local group here:

    If you have been to one, I hope you’re a volunteer for your local group. -Boyd Kneeland, East King County FoNRA (Washington0

  17. I’ll put Washington on my list to highlight. We should be talking about where the money is going. :)

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