NRA pushy recruiting and fundraising


April 20, 2007, 09:57 PM
This is not a bash the NRA thread. I know there has been a lot of stuff lately as to why the NRA is good or bad, with some strong opinions on both sides.

I'll start by saying I have been an NRA member for about 20 years and just sent in a 5 year renewal. I truly believe that without the NRA we would be in much worse shape than we are today. Pros and cons regarding effectiveness or compromise are not the topics here. If you feel the need to express how much you hate the NRA because they support gun control, I guess that's your right, but it will be off topic as far as I'm concerned.

What concerns me is the aggressive recruiting and fundraising. I just talked to another person yesterday that told me he was going to join the NRA but they pestered him so much he decided against it. This makes about the fourth person recently, including my dad (though he's actually a member already). These have all been people that are not "into" guns but are concerned about protecting the right to bear arms. The guy I talked to yesterday is an older gentleman and I didn't even know he owns guns.

The aggressiveness I'm talking about is all the mailings begging for money, all the phone calls at dinner time. One guy at work said he got a call from them, told them he wouldn't make a commitment over the phone and asked them to send him info in the mail. Instead he got a bill saying thank you for your commitment. My wife has taken to very politely hanging up on them when they call. My mom said they were getting very tired of all the calls and mailings.

We all support what they do and I even send a little extra money once in a while. I've gotten to where I don't want to send any money because that just makes it all the worse. I realize that this is the way fundraising works, studies have been done, etc.. I'm sure the calls with the canned speeches about Ted Kennedy wanting your guns works with many people, and again I believe in the fight and support the cause. It's sad that this aggressiveness is turning off a lot of people who would add a lot of numbers for us.

I gave my thoughts on this issue to a fundraiser who called (very nice gentleman, probably volunteer) and he suggested I call the toll-free number, but that got me nowhere.

My suggestion is this: many people including myself would be glad to contribute an extra $20 or more a year with the stipulation that they not be hounded for more, or flooded with mailings unless it's truly important.
We're not all activists and we can't all give hundreds or thousands of dollars, but enough of us "little people" reliably kicking in $10-$50 a year could make a difference.

I'm sure there are some NRA people here that might be able to communicate this to someone in a position of authority. Any thoughts?

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April 20, 2007, 10:15 PM
One of the reasons I quit the NRA was their ridiculus fundraising. Sending me a letter registered, signature and return receipt required to tell me that they needed more money sent a "mixed" message.

My suggestion is this: many people including myself would be glad to contribute an extra $20 or more a year with the stipulation that they not be hounded for more, or flooded with mailings.

If you revise your statement to the above (no hounding under any circumstances) I'd rejoin.


PS Before anyone starts attacking me for not fighting for the 2A, I donate regularly via gun shows, belong to other orginizations, have driven down to state capitol multiple times, have as a hobby taking newbies to the range etc. It has also unexpectedly given me a useful tool in debates with antis :D (working at a large city university hospital it is a target rich enviorment :evil: ) when they start attacking me as NRA I calmly explain that I am not NRA and would they please answer my question :neener: NJ

April 20, 2007, 10:29 PM
I thought I was the only one with the same problems. They must spend more money on the junk mailings that they send than my membership costs. I did not renew this year just because of the bombardment of junk. But before I get flamed I still participate at the friends of the NRA dinners and leave some money there. I am also a member of the GOA. Maybe if I they change their tactics I will rejoin. But I'll believe it when I see it.

April 20, 2007, 10:33 PM
After reading this latest tidbit by Wayne LaPierre First, we believe in absolutely gun-free, zero-tolerance, totally safe schools. That means no guns in America's schools, period ... with the rare exception of law enforcement officers or trained security personnel

I may have to rethink my above offer :fire:


fast eddie
April 20, 2007, 11:01 PM
If more folks belonged to the NRA then they wouldn't have to beg so much. I renew annually, send a few bucks to the NRA-ILA then toss the rest of the mailings in the trash with the rest of the junk mail. I believe it's a small inconvenience for the benefit.

April 20, 2007, 11:05 PM
You guys need to understand, they have fought for New Orleans and taken the mayor and police chief to court for confiscating firearms and even got them held in contempt of court.

The NRA got legislation passed that bans frivilous lawsuits against gunmakers...who obviously can't afford million dollar lawsuits...

As far as the school comment and the Class 3 crowd...

You have to remember that the NRA is what every major anti gunner looks too...I used to disagree with what I'm about to say...but the NRA because of their nature and media exposure have to take more of a moderate stance to slowly pull out of their anti gun ignorance.

Small Arms review pointed out that they support them behind the scenes in the Class 3 community and such but due to their publicity have to be careful and slowly ween people over to our side.

Some may disagree with this but think about some anti gun loud mouth telling all these brainwashed anti gunners and possibly school kids that 'can you believe the NRA wants guns in schools after these shootings?' then, with the telephone game that these things turn into it turns into more 'extreme' things...

I think we have to slowly bring the other side, to our side....
If you think about it, when the anti's tried something extreme, it never passes muster and fails...

if we (although we understand it more than most) go from school shootings to being able to buy and walk around with an MG with no background check as true freedom and the true interpretation of the amendment would guarantee, you can't take it...

studying the NWO or anything has to be done gradually, otherwise it seems too 'out there' for people to pursue an educational interest in.

The reason they send out SO much material is that the UN and people like George Soros are sending millions to IANSA and the anti gun lobbyists all the time...

Britain just sent 2 million (in taxpayer money no doubt) to IANSA for instance...

lawsuits, going to court, fighting the governments, going to congressional hearings, Citizen and police training, womens progams, hunts, eddie eagle/gun safety, NRA news in DC, NRA Annual Meetings, the magazine subscriptions, the ILA organization end of it, staff, workers, bldg. expenses, NRA museum, range facilities, trips for Wayne to go debate Rebecca Peters about UN gun control, and the list goes on, and it takes $$$.

I just don't understand the whole thought of I'm not going to fight for my rights because i get too much mail....most of the mail i get from them i open and trash...other times i send a donation, enter a drawing, or renew my membership.

I get more junk from Capital One than the NRA...besides, it's for freedom!

Fast Eddie is right, there are over 100 Million gun owners and just over 4 million NRA members...that's sad, actually it's pitiful. You have to fight for your rights....$25-35.00 a year is NOT a lot when the alternative is you or your grandkids fighting WW3 or another civil war somepoint down the line over this issue.

It's better to fight the info. fight and WIN then be lazy and have to have bloody Declaration of Independence style rebellion....please think about it..

Bottom line, you may not agree 100% but the Katrina situation, working on the Parker case, and getting legislation passed so the gun companies weren't litigated out of business...we need them!

Just my 5 cents...

April 20, 2007, 11:53 PM
DualBerettas and Fast Eddie, I agree with you. The phone calls and mailings are a nuisance, but they won't make me leave the NRA. The fight is too important and I certainly don't mean to downplay their accomplishments.

My concern is for all the people that are turned off cold by it all and refuse to join because of it. Like I mentioned, I've run into at least four people recently that are not really "gun people" or activists that could have added to our numbers and strength, but were pestered to the point of just saying "forget it".
I know effective fundraising and recruitment likely requires a certain amount of pestering, but surely there is a better way.

April 21, 2007, 01:00 AM
I agree it turn alot of people off. They need to develop a better tactic. Alot of their members are not middle to upper middle and above money makers. They need to do something different. Somehow give people a choice on the amount of mailings and calls they get. They do seem pushy and I give them alot of money so I am speaking as one who gives alot but it still in aggravating even to me. They also need to explain to people better that their dues are not used for lobbying and where money needs to be sent for that activity and why this is so. And they need to come up with a way to get more people to join.

Jorg Nysgerrig
April 21, 2007, 01:03 AM
There have been several threads on this lately. Almost all of them have had several who say they have just contacted the NRA and asked the mailings to stop. Apparently, the mailings stopped.

Same thing with the calls. Politely ask to be taken off the call list.

After reading this latest tidbit by Wayne LaPierre

The latest tidbit dated May 1, 1999?

April 21, 2007, 01:22 AM
I'm going to guess that the NRA management hires a firm to handle fund raising and membership drives.

I would imagine that this outside entity likely is paid based on percentages, so for them it is strickly a matter of numbers and dollars.

I too think the NRA management should get more involved in making sure that NRA memberships and fund raising doesn't become something akin to just another product sales pitch. The degree in which this issue upsets people varies, but it does upset too many people.

April 21, 2007, 01:58 AM
My personal final straw came a few years ago when they started sending me themed coins and videos with the demand I pay for them.

I was moving away from my gun club (which required membership for insurance purposes) at the time. I opted to leave the organization.

I'll probably re-join, but the badgering is tiresome. I appreciate the lobbying strength, etc, and I can throw away junk mail, but when a group starts sending me crap and trying to bill me...that's a little much.

April 21, 2007, 02:44 AM
this stuff never happens to me!
& I am a life member.
I feel kind of left out, perhaps they know I'm broke!

Do you think head honcho's like Wayne and Sandra read thr?

I met Sandra at a fundraiser a few years ago when the SF gun ban was proposed, she seemed like a first class lady to me.

April 21, 2007, 03:16 AM
Do what I did. Start sending a form letter back to them in their pre-paid envelope, stating what you want them to do FIRST. Tell them you might think about sending more money, if they do what you pay them to do.

They eventually stopped sending me fund raising letters.

Imagine if a million members did exactly that! The NRA would be the most aggressive pro-gun organization imaginable!

April 21, 2007, 08:01 AM
Q: How can I reduce the amount of mail I receive from the NRA?

A: Simply email us at or dial 800-NRA-3888 and request to be placed on the "Do Not Promote" list. This will significantly reduce the amount of mail you receive without affecting important mailings, magazine service, or your membership renewal.

April 21, 2007, 08:05 AM
Folks read one line in an NRA Statement and go off the deep end vowing to not support the NRA blah blah blah.....

The fact remains that they are our best vehicle for preserving our rights. GET OVER the one or two issues that you may have with them and start supporting them for the other 99% of what they do.

Its the old "Bite off your Nose to spite your Face" scenario.....get over it folks.

Take a look at the rest of the NRA Statement and look at some of the POSITIVE points.

We believe that a lawful, properly-permitted citizen who chooses to carry a concealed firearm not only deserves that right, but is a deterrent to crime. We support the right to carry because it has helped cut crime rates in all 31 states that have adopted it ... with almost no abuse of any kind by the lawful citizens who took the courses, submitted to the background checks, passed the tests and became part of a proud citizens movement that's making America a safer place to live. The truth is, very few actually choose to carry a gun -- but the bad guys don't know which few they are.

We believe freedom should never be diminished for those who abide by the law. On the contrary, freedom should be diminished only for those who break the law. That is the principle upon which we stand opposed to waiting period proposals and one-gun-a-month schemes.

There is no evidence waiting periods work. And if there is authority to say one gun a month, there will eventually be authority to say none.

We believe it is felons who should get no guns any month. So of the thousands of criminals who bought guns for felons, we believe the Clinton Justice Department should have prosecuted more than just 13 in 1997 and 24 in 1998. That's not zero tolerance.

The National Rifle Association has never agreed that magazine capacity has any relationship to the criminal misuse of firearms. We cannot support pointless initiatives. It's as useless as trying to restrict the number of guns a criminal can carry, or the number of loaded magazines he can pack, or for that matter, the number of pockets he can lug his bullets in -- when chances are, he should be wearing prison fatigues in the first place.

We support reversing the Clinton Administration policy of not prosecuting felons with guns. We advocate national adoption of Project Exile, a zero-tolerance project that began in Richmond, Virginia, but can't seem to get the support of President Clinton's Justice Department. Any felon caught with a gun, no matter what he's doing, goes to jail for 5 years, period.

Thin Black Line
April 21, 2007, 08:11 AM
My personal final straw came a few years ago when they started sending me themed coins and videos with the demand I pay for them.

Don't forget the calendars, too.

I detailed a while back on THR about how I received a 'you forgot to re-new
your membership' letter from the NRA right after I got back from Iraq. It started
with something to the effect of "It's Americans like you...who are helping lose
our rights...." blah blah. Needless to say, I didn't renew or even respond at
that time.

However, I now have the NRA's complimentary one year military membership.

Let's see if someone at the NRA has the brains to write a better letter next
time around.....

April 21, 2007, 11:59 AM
bikini calender? lol

I did like the UN Debate video, showed it to some people...

also, FYI the UN wants a one world religion...


April 21, 2007, 12:11 PM
When I get calls, I usually just say that I don't have any extra money but was in support of their cause. Periodically, I do send small contributions thorough their fund raising (ILA) letters. I would assume that is why I continue to get calls. The NRA needs money to fight the battles for our SA rights. When was the last time you hired a lawyer to do any specific work for you? I usually renew in 3-5 year chunks rather than doing the lifetime membership thing. Their resources are not infinite. They have to pick their fights carefully for the most impact.

April 21, 2007, 12:21 PM
Don't disclose your profession on the forms they send you, or better yet, contact them and ask to be removed from their solicitation lists.

They legally must honor your request.

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