SOF Week

The NRA, The 2d Amendment, and Congress

After the last week, I am sure you guys are tired of all of the 2d Amendment talk, assault weapons ban talk, mental health talk, etc. Me too. As usual, folks on both sides are embracing the fact that politicians never waste a good crisis. Attempts to pass legislation limiting out gun rights are coming, no doubt. The best thing for gun owners to do right now is join the NRA, learn the 2d Amendment and it’s purpose, and use your elected officials to make sure your voice is heard. Lots of people are partaking in heated Twitter and Facebook debates, which is all fine, good, and useless. As a population of gun owners, we need to fight the battle where it matters, and that is with the people who are sworn to uphold the Constitution. My better half asked me last night, “Why does anyone need a gun like that (meaning an AR15)?” Well, because the Government has them too, and the whole point of the 2d Amendment is to fight them when they decide the Constitution is an inconvenience to their socialist agenda. But outside of that, because I can. I don’t need a reason, that’s the beauty of it.

As we’ve mentioned on Soldier Systems numerous times, the National Rifle Association is an extremely important political force. For a number of years, Congress has ranked the NRA as the most powerful lobbying organization in America. The Institute for Legislative Action is the lobbying arm of the NRA, and has been helmed by Chris W. Cox since 2002. Of note, Mr. Cox was instrumental in the fight to make sure the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban was not signed into a permanent law. He will be the NRA’s leader of any resistance to the Obama Administration’s current assault on the Bill of Rights. I certainly wish him luck, and support. I recently renewed my NRA membership and upgraded to a Lifetime membership. It was $1000 when I did it, but you can get in for $500 right now I believe. I’m not mad, it was money well spent. The only reason we are not already in the same boat legally as the UK, Australia, or nearly anywhere else with our gun rights is because of the political clout of the NRA. That clout does not come cheap, so if you’re spending all your money on guns and ammo right now, make sure to give to the NRA and protect your right to do it again in the future.

Read the 2d Amendment too. What does it say? It says this, ” A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” The right of the people to keep and bear arms…for the security of a free state. The right of the people to arm themselves so as to not become subjects of a tyrannical government again, as we had fought so hard to free ourselves from. I hear the anti-gun crowd say, “We don’t want to take away hunting arms or sporting arms.” Well, respectfully, go to hell. The 2d Amendment guarantees my right to fight off oppressors with my guns. The 2d Amendment has nothing to do with hunting. The President of the United States has a bunch of guns protecting his family, but I can’t have any to protect mine? So much for the Office of the President being a serving citizen, one burdened to lead the rest as an equal in the interest of all. I will never let one group of socialist whiners, subject to the state’s will for the continuation of their “entitlements”, tell me that the Constitution is no longer applicable. Soon after the abolition of the 2d Amendment will come the death of their most cherished right, the 1st Amendment. The 1st Amendment gives free speech, the 2d gives the people the right to defend it. That is something lost on people of no character or fortitude.

Fortunately, you have a voice. Every member of Congress can be easily reached online. I got a personal response of Congressman Howard Coble within 24 hours and Senator Richard Burr in the same time frame with a guarantee of their support of the Second Amendment. They know what I think, I know what they think, and come election time I will hold them accountable with my votes. I suggest everyone get off of Facebook and Twitter for a moment and type out a well written, grammatically correct, punctuated paragraph or two to the person who will vote in your interests. Make sure you let them know what you want, or don’t bitch when it doesn’t go your way. Your Congressman does not follow you on Twitter, but his office reads their .gov emails because they want your votes. Democrat, Republican, Independent…when most of their future votes say something, that’s a powerful motivator. They work for you, not the other way around. Be the boss and tell them what you want.

If you own a gun, for any reason, your rights are at their most precarious state in history. You have a voice, use it. You have resources, use them. You have a Right to Keep and Bear Arms, use it! It will take less time for you to strap on a gun, join the NRA and write your 3 members of Congress than it did to read this article. My sincere hope is that writing this was a waste of time, and that everyone is saying to themselves “He’s about a week late…” If not, please consider this advice, America needs your help now more than ever.

46 Responses to “The NRA, The 2d Amendment, and Congress”

  1. ocd+dpms says:

    “The best thing for gun owners to do right now is join the NRA”

    page 3 of nra transcript:
    _______________________
    A dozen more killers? A hundred? More? How can we possibly even
    guess how many, given our nation’s refusal to create an active
    national database of the mentally ill?
    _________________________

    I’m a gun owner, I oppose another assault weapons ban. But don’t pretend the NRA serves my interests. We’re not ALL in this together. At least not as far as the NRA is concerned.

    The NRA seems to think it can fight scapegoating with scapegoating. And I’m the goat.

    http://www.nami.org/Template.cfm?Section=Press_Release_Archive&template=/contentmanagement/contentdisplay.cfm&ContentID=148650&title=Newtown%20Tragedy%3A%20NAMI%20Condemns%20NRA%20Position%20as%20%22Outrageous%20and%20Wrong%22

    • Mark says:

      Don’t you think maybe the NRA is responding to this paragraph from the webpage you cited:
      “Law already exists requiring states to report the names of people ‘adjudicated as mentally defective’ to the National Instant Background Check System (NICS). It has never been properly implemented because of confusion surrounding the highly stigmatizing term “mentally defective” and the uncertain meaning of ‘adjudicated.'”
      Apparently, people can lie all day when answering that question on the Form 4473 and not get caught. I guess there is a “mentally defective loophole” I was never aware of. If this is correct, it needs to be fixed.

      • ocd+dpms says:

        That’s not what they said though.

        This may not be the best example, but what if someone said something like :

        ” How can we possibly even guess how many, given our nation’s refusal to create an active national database of those known to use firearms?”

        And then someone responded, “they meant people who had already used them in felonies”.

        Ya know what? Maybe they did. But how would you react?

        • ocd+dpms says:

          I should also add that I’d be completely open to the NRA offering a clarification of what they meant. But until they do I’m going to go by what they said as opposed to conjecturing about what they might have meant and misspoke.

    • Stefan S. says:

      If it wasn’t for the NRA you’d be only allowed a breakopen shotgun and a 22 short.

  2. Sketchy_Endeavor says:

    You’re about a week late.

  3. J.D says:

    Good point. I just renewed my NRA membership.

  4. Ash says:

    “The President of the United States has a bunch of guns protecting his family, but I can’t have any to protect mine?”

    AMEN, brother! Also, I love the point about owning one (AR-15) because I CAN. Does anyone other than professional race car drivers need a muscle car? Probably not, but we’re free to buy a Charger or a Ferrari (I know, not a muscle car, but you get my point). Are we allowed to drive at top speed? No, but it’s super-fun anyway. Do I NEED a semiautomatic rifle patterned after a select-fire military rifle? Probably not, but it’s SO MUCH FUN!

  5. Canadian says:

    Americans are lucky to have the 2nd ammendment. In Canada we don’t have such a stipulation- and as such our fight for gun owners is much harder. However the NRA helps us as well indirectly. Your fight down south effects us up here very directly.

    I ask that all Canadians do there part as well- by joining both the NRA (I am a lifetime member), and the Canadian NFA (National Firearms Association http://www.nfa.ca)

  6. BradKAK308 says:

    You have locks on your car and maybe an alarm. Lock up your guns well if they aren’t being used/carried by you right now. You take drivers ed take some gunners ed too. If better storage was practiced we wouldn’t be have this sad state of affairs.

  7. Adco says:

    Does anyone here see the irony that the NRA’s position would see thousands of returning servicemen and women registered into a national database like common criminals? How many ex-military suffer from anxiety, depression, PTSD, etc? How many serving would be put in this database? Lets not forget all the LEO, teachers, and other individuals in high stress jobs that have bouts with mental health issues.

    You should be writing to your elected officials, but more importantly you should be writing to the NRA to take them to task for their ridiculous position which hardly helps the 2A cause.

    Fighting extremes with extremes is of no use to anyone. All the NRA is doing is eliminating the support of numerous moderates who are influential in public opinion.

    • SSD says:

      Unfortunately, we are not walking away from this. Something is going to be compromised. Is it going to be those opposed to nationalized healthcare relenting? Individual liberty? Gun rights? Choose one or more. For each of us, our personal value systems and situations will guide our priorities. But don’t think for a second that something isn’t going to give.

      If PTSD makes the list of mental health issues that preclude firearms ownership, fully expect it to be an even worse issue. As it is, PTSD carries such a stigma that few seek treatment.

      • ocd+dpms says:

        I know people with ocd can be extremely reluctant to seek help or talk to anyone about their obsessions.

        A lot of us get harm ocd and may have obsessions that we might physically or sexually assault someone and worry about the ramifications of telling someone. (I’ve been there its horrible). This includes mental health professionals sue to the (Mostly unfounded) feat that they’d be reported as a risk to others.

        Knowing that they’d be entered into a national database certainly isn’t going to help this. I also worry about the paternalistic aspect of one day entering into the equation too. “Oh you have depression you cant have a gun you might blow your brains out”.

        • Adco says:

          Not only would individuals not seek treatment, which is problematic in and of itself, but it does nothing to prevent determined individuals from accessing firearms as history has shown. You can’t simply swap one right for another then pretend that something has been protected.

          The real danger of any criminal act is in the overreaction that ensues. The limitation of freedoms and rights that ensues from this is a dangerously slippery slope that encourages other disaffected individuals to take similar actions.

          While I understand everyone’s priorities regarding rights may be different (particularly when they are under threat), I do not think that rhetoric from the two extremes (Obama view NRA view) of which right is more important than another is productive to addressing the issues at hand. I think the real answer here is addressing issues of mental health, and in particular how that plays out in adolescents within the public educational system. These individuals are often marginalized and underfunded schools are ill equipped to properly deal with these students.

          • Steve says:

            “You can’t simply swap one right for another then pretend that something has been protected.”

            I guess I missed the “right” to not be identified as having a mental illness when I last read the US Constitution. The right to keep and bear arms was pretty easy to spot, though.

  8. BradKAK308 says:

    Where does this statisc of private guns come from 88.8 per 100 people come from? Is that just guns not owned by governments? So it would include Hollywood, ranges, security companies, etc. Does it factor guns that have been destroyed?

  9. Pete says:

    Hey Where’s CJ….I want a foreigner’s opionion on this…..

  10. Tony says:

    The NRA presented the worst possible position following this tragedy. They are out of touch with the American public and have only furthered the notion of gun owners as ignorant and paranoid individuals. I am ashamed to be a member of this organization at this point.

    They had an opportunity to speak on the merits of responsible gun ownership and instead felt the need to level the same accusatory hyperbole at other targets in an effort to lay blame for the Newtown shooting. Video games are responsible for the massacre at Newtown? Seriously NRA? Instead of blaming the shooter for his own actions, you choose to lay the blame at another industry? This is the same tactic that is used against the gun industry, and it is far more effective when used against the gun industry as there is a direct correlation between the dead children and guns while the connection with video games is tenuous at best.

    The aftermath of the Newtown shooting left the 2nd Amendment in a vulnerable position, and responsible gun owners were put in a position where they had to present themselves as responsible citizens worthy of the responsibility inherent with firearms ownership. Instead, the NRA completely fumbled the play and blamed video games and advocated for government oversight of the mentally ill in violation of current privacy laws. A public fight between guns, video games, and healthcare privacy laws is a fight that gun owners lose. The complete lack of understanding regarding this simple concept shows how out of touch the NRA is.

  11. Jay The Fillet says:

    If you value the 2A, the NRA and GOA is your friend. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, no matter how I feel about them. Fight together and when you win, you can then work out your differences.

  12. Paul says:

    I was just talking recently to a former Senior Staffer for both the Senate Armed Services Committee as well as for former Virginia Sen. John Warner. She was telling me that in Sen Warner’s office were two fax machines – one which was used for day to day office communication activities and another that was the publically published number to which constituents could send letters to the senator.

    She said that the public fax number ran all day long, everyday, and they had to change the print cartriges every other day, and even some times daily during the run up ton contencious issues, to ensure the machine was properly fed. They hired a junior staffer whose sole job was to keep that fax machine up and operational and also sort all the letters recieved from constituents by topic.

    The Senior Staffer stated that the rule of thumb they used was that for every single letter they received, there were at least 100 constituents who felt the same way.

    Start writing Ladies and Gentlemen.

  13. Al says:

    I was on the fence but I’m starting to think there are some valid points from the pro-gun folk that the media are ignoring. I’ve yet to see one news report on the effects of psychotropic drugs. Children in the US are the most medicated in the world. My wife was an art teacher in a children’s home, she said so many of the kids were on these kinds of drugs. Its an easy way for the drug companies to get their drugs prescribed without any resistance from the parents but I’ve never seen a report on this travesty. Whether you’re a politician or tv station, guns, NRA and pro gun folk are an easier target compared to the large pharmaceutical companies to get better ratings and popular support. I also bet pharmaceutical lobbyists have far more clout and finances far outweigh the NRA.

  14. dude says:

    The purpose of the second amendment is to ensure a standing army is NOT necessary to defend the country. Coupled with the limitation of Congressional power that funding for an army can only run two years, even though Congress has the enumerated power to suppress insurrection, yada, yada, yada. So, the American people want to provide for a common defense, to include putting down their neighbors who would end our experiment in government, but they don’t want said government to establish the means to that end in perpetuity, they want to have a recurring role in the decision making process.

    Point: gun ownership is a civic responsibility. That responsibility includes not only knowing how to use the steel, but being prepared to form up with your neighbors into a rifle squad, and the guys down the way to make a platoon, etc. How we get there, every American a rifleman, is what the debate should be.

    • somthing_funny says:

      “How we get there, every American a rifleman, is what the debate should be.”

      would national service be the answer ?

      • dude says:

        Ideas for training

        1) A natural extension is no formal/documented training=no gun rights. This is already the situation for CCW. The argument is that because so much of American society is urban rather than rural (ie, the opposite of the 1780s), we cannot assume that everyone just grows up knowing the rules and skills of carrying guns. Because urbanites have no need of guns and don’t own them, obviously.

        If national service is the documentary standard, and gun ownership/et al is still a “right,” then so is military service. We can’t deny someone access to their rights by denying them the menas to affirm their rights (this HAS been done, specifically regarding this issue, in the past.) Regardless of how out of shape, disabled, etc, you cannot be denied enlistment. According to the 2011 Census, that’s 4+ million high school seniors per year we may need to accept into active federal service and thus pay, train, and find a job for.

        2) Reactivate the draft boards. All persons who want to maintain their gun rights must present themselves to the draft board and be classified for service. Any who are not classifiable 1A or choose not to present themselves surrender their gun rights.

        3) Expand JROTC and integrate it into the American Civics curriculum to include BRM and 7-8 and provide a civic context for the lessons. A passing grade for X semesters of instruction are required to affirm gun rights upon reaching the majority.

  15. VF Gunrunners says:

    I live in Oregon, our state reps are not listening I was told that they believe that an assault weapons ban does not unduly violate my seconded amendment right and that They are taking cues from California laws

  16. Mike says:

    From an european standpoint, this debate is quite absurd. We have strict gun laws and don’t feel to miss something.

    You guys firmly hold on to the second amendment, stuff roughly 250 years old. It was NOT meant to allow every citizen to arm themselves because “the can or like to”. It was because the US freed itself from the British occupation troops and a standing army was far from being available for the freshly independent colonies.

    Plus you guys blame countries like Afghanistan or Iraq for sticking to old laws and for not being democratic, etc. But you too hold on to old laws.

    The US had 10.2 gun-related deaths in 2009 per 100.000 people. Germany had 1.1 and the UK had just 0.25 per 100.000 people. The two countries with the strictest gun-laws in Europe. Looks like something is somehow related.

    For a brief moment, just step out of your gun-loving little world and look what other nations did and why.

    • Ash says:

      To quote Ghandi, “Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, History will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest”.
      So, yes, I agree that there are things that are related to gun-control. Control the guns and you control the people. The UK has how many CCTV cameras on it’as streets? Control=Peace, right?

      I’m an American, and I own guns because Germans murdered my grandmother’s family about 70 years ago, and Europeans murdered my grandfather’s family about 200 years ago.

      Hey, can you produce some numbers on knifings/stabbing in the UK? Bet they’re WAY over .25 per 100,000 people.

      • Mike says:

        Death through stabbing in the UK results in roughly 340 people dead each year. Population is 62.641.000. That means the death trough stabbing ratio in the UK is: 0.57 on 100.000 people. In the US, refereing to the US census, stabbing causes around 1.000 dead each year. That’s 0,32 on 100.000 people.

        UK: 0.25 deaths per 100.000 (firearm) and 0.57 (stabbing)
        US: 10.2 deaths per 100.000 (firearm) and 0.32 (stabbing)

    • Brian says:

      If I weren’t so unapologeticly AMERICAN I would. Enjoy your European model;)

    • Ramz says:

      [Quote] You guys firmly hold on to the second amendment, stuff roughly 250 years old…

      How about your Monarchy? Remind me, how old is it again Mike? I think you as a SUBJECT under the dominion of a powerless monarch, have acquired a comfort with being submissive that’s unthinkable for most of us here.

      So please, continue on with your european sentiment and your strict gun laws that allow you not to “miss something”. Please live your lives on bended knees; and when history repeats it’s self and the wolf is again at your door, give us a shout!

  17. Mike – keep your opinions to yourself. Americans died by the thousands to free Europe from the Nazis (good guys with guns fighting bad guys with guns ) and you have the nerve to come on here and tell us about our right to keep and bear arms ?

    Go fuck yourself you miserable piece of shit

  18. Mike says:

    Larry, noone asked the US Army to put down their weapons. There’s a big difference between civilians and soldiers having wespons.

    Thanks for taking care of the Nazis. Even tough Europe has been freed by a nation build on genocide – the indians were there first.

    And Larry, by all respect, I just wanted to add another standpoint to the discussion. No need to loose all respect when someone has a different oppinion.

    • Ken says:

      Please explain to me how the Second Ammendment in our country is of concern to you. Should you be happy with the firearms laws in your country, then so be it. Our country has it’s own path to follow and with all due respect, your opinion about that path is irrelevant.

      • Mike says:

        Ken, no worries. We got our own problems with our government. Last year, they tried to ban Paintball, because it’s too violent or could be used to train for a massacre (as they said). Fortunately, they failed.

        The second Ammendment is not a concern for me. I just wanted to provide a second opinion. A look from the outside.

        • Ramz says:

          Mike how dare you, as a British subject actively advocate to deprive us of our 2nd amendment rights! Let me ask you, who will come to your aid (again) when the wolf is at your door? Remember WWII?

          After the fall of France and the Dunkirk evacuation in 1940, Britain found itself short of arms for defense. The Home Guard was forced to drill with canes, umbrellas, spears, pikes, and clubs. The British government then placed advertisements in American newspapers and magazines, begging Americans to send a gun to defend British civilians faced with threat of invasion. The ads pleaded for pistols, rifles, revolvers, shotguns and binoculars from American civilians who wish to answer the call and aid in defense of British homes.

          You begged and we responded not only with guns but with American blood and that’s all you have to say?

    • Ramz says:

      Oh Please Mike… You “Euro-English” in your silly little EU sat by and watched ethnic cleansing take place in the Balkins on a scale not seen in Europe since WWII. While you ate fish and chips and watched shitty soccer, (that’s right, I called it soccer) others did the heavy lifting for you and your region, yet again.

  19. jon c says:

    There is literally nothing I could care less about a foreigner’s opinions on how we should interpret our constitution.

    We’ll have this talk again next time you guys need liberating…again…or again…

  20. Arctic1 says:

    Mike, if you are going to offer counter-arguments, make sure your facts are straight. The number you gave is not even remotely correct, in 2009 the homicide rate was 3 per 100000. The US isn’t even in the top 10 when it comes to firearm murder rates. The murder rate is the only relevant statistic anyways.

    And I would very much disagree that strict gun control laws will prevent gun violence, case in point is 22 july 2011 here in Norway.

    If we had just had properly trained and armed police, maybe even armed security at that event, the loss of life could have been reduced. Or if some of the people rescuing kids from the water were armed, and had the chance to shoot him, maybe 69 people didn’t have to be shot that day.

    Evil does exist, in different shapes and forms. Banning guns and turning a blind eye to that fact will not help. We are fighting the same battle in Norway, with people more concerned with banning guns, than creating a society able to protect it’s citizens.

  21. Ken says:

    I feel there is an important concept being overlooked in this debate. The Second Ammendment is a part of the Bill of Rights, which is the first ten ammendments to the Constitution. Each of these enumerated rights are as important as the next, however the Second Ammendment is constantly being eroded away under the pretext that someone MIGHT abuse that right. Think about that concept, taking a right, guarantied by the Bill of Rights away from ALL because a miniscule fraction of the population MIGHT abuse that right. As a society, we have become so afraid of our shadows that we are contemplating stripping rights away from everyone for the illusion of safety.

    Think about what would happen if we did the same with the First Ammendment freedom of speech. Should we take away the ability of people to post on blogs like this one because they MIGHT say something inflammatory or someone MIGHT be offended. We are on the verge of allowing our government to do the same thing to the Second Ammendment.

    “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Benjamin Franklin

  22. Thatguy says:

    I don’t watch the news everyday but I am positive no one ever said “Guns killed Osama Bin Laden”.