Why *not* support the NRA?


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azmjs
April 29, 2011, 06:13 PM
The reasons a person ought to support the NRA are pretty straightforward- they're the preeminent gun rights lobbyist and gun enthusiast's organization.

No one can really dispute this, and no one really tries, which begs the question - if this is the case, why not support the NRA?

If you don't support the NRA, or you know of reasons why people don't, please share them.

Hopefully I and other supporters of the NRA can come up with answers to these specific concerns, and welcome you or other holdouts into the NRA fold.

No one can say that the NRA is perfect, but we must not make the mistake of allowing the perfect to be the enemy of the good. If we go down that foolish path, we end up only with the bad.

So, what's not to like about the National Rifle Association?

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azmjs
April 29, 2011, 06:35 PM
I'll start with an objection I take a keen interest in - that the NRA is not politically orthodox.

What this means is that the NRA does not sign on to a whole slate of orthodox political opinions. For example, the NRA gives high marks to very liberal political leaders who happen to be friendly to guns, and the NRA doesn't use its considerable political might to push low taxes or anti-abortion.

(While I personally consider demanding political orthodoxy to be evil and unethical because of my knowledge of Soviet history, my personal opinions aren't really suitable for convincing other people, so we'll leave this point behind. )

Lets look at it pragmatically.

First we've got to first fess up about how we prioritize gun rights in the broader landscape political controversies. If you put guns pretty low on your list, The NRA might just not seem worth the effort.

I think though that when you consider the efficacy and efficiency of the NRA vs any potential alternative, it still makes sense to donate. If you care about gun rights at all, at least give a little to the NRA, because you know it will help.

There's no guarantee that giving money to an organization that counts guns among a broader slate of activist issues will actually end up getting anything done for guns.

Another possibility is that a person might feel that he can withdraw support from the NRA in order to blackmail it into adopting his broader political views. If you're guilty of this, remember the golden rule. And remember that holding gun rights hostage in exchange for any other political concession makes you an anti-gunner.

Lastly we should consider the example of the nation's preeminent defender of individual liberty, the American Civil Liberties Union. In the same way that that gun rights are strongly correlated with the American right, defense of individual liberties are correlated with the left. The NRA has succeeded, largely, in remaining a nonpartisan organization, but the ACLU has not done enough to court support from its nominal political opponents and to suppress the partisanship of its members.

As a result, many people who would, if they only cared about actions, values and results, support the ACLU, instead deny it their support based on political considerations.

If this happens to the NRA, it can only hurt the cause of gun rights.

Using the most pragmatic terms of all, we should at last consider that the NRA can afford to neglect the politics of its base, because its base is so devoted to the gun issue, and because its base owes it a debt of gratitude for what it has already done.

Energy expended to gain support from liberals will do a great deal more extra good for the cause of guns than expending the same energy to chase down selfish or reluctant conservatives.

The right can be counted on to do right by guns, the left needs to be won over.

Fleet
April 29, 2011, 06:35 PM
Because they have a very bad habit of compromising.

Cosmoline
April 29, 2011, 06:37 PM
Two words

Junk mail

M-Cameron
April 29, 2011, 06:39 PM
Two words

Junk mail

you do know you can opt out of that right?


i honestly have a hard time believing that junk mail is a burden to people......you dont want it, throw it out...you dont even need to open it, problem solved.

kilo729
April 29, 2011, 06:40 PM
Meh. Because the ranges near me have the annoying requirement of NRA membership.


P.S. We just had a thread or two about this.

Ole Coot
April 29, 2011, 06:57 PM
I have belonged longer than I can remember, it's really all we have and it sure ain't perfect. I don't care for the junk mail and the phone calls really tick me off. Show me something better.

kingpin008
April 29, 2011, 07:15 PM
Because they have a very bad habit of compromising.

Spoken like an individual who doesn't get the fact that those compromises were made in the face of much, much less favorable options.

azmjs
April 29, 2011, 07:37 PM
Because they have a very bad habit of compromising.

So did the Founding Fathers.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with compromise, it was what our nation was founded on.

Vonderek
April 29, 2011, 08:44 PM
I have awakened and again it is groundhog day

Here's a thread with 199 posts on this very subject that was recently locked:

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=589440

Can we give the NRA a rest this week?

ArfinGreebly
April 29, 2011, 08:59 PM
You know, I did warn y'all that I have a long-winded, abstract post that deals with this very thing (the narrow focus -vs- broad address or rights).

Keep this up and I will definitely post it.

:D

Cosmoline
April 29, 2011, 09:13 PM
you do know you can opt out of that right?


You don't understand--if I join I want to NEVER receive a single piece of mail from the NRA or anyone affiliated with them. Instead they send out tons of notices, crud and of course requests for more money. I'd give them money if they would agree never to speak with me or communicate with me in any way. If I'm interested in what's going on I just visit the webpage.

THE DARK KNIGHT
April 29, 2011, 09:31 PM
1. Their advertisers are a joke - how could anyone take those magazines seriously when the ads for garbage late-night TV scams like rare emerald faux jewelry, Legends of the South shot glasses and snake medicine anti-aging pills?

2. incessant junk mail

3. Outdated magazines - not so much the NRA's fault but most of the magazine content is weeks and months behind by the time it hits print, just plain pointless for the internet age. Not to mention much of the rhetoric is extremely hyperbolic/melodramatic and makes them harder to take seriously.

4. Despite being a pro-gun organization and stating that they are politically neutral on all but gun rights, they openly embrace/endorse people like the discredited fool Glen Beck and have them speak at events. Why would I want to donate my money to an organization that pays for a crying madman who scribbles conspiracy theories on a chalk board to come spew his filth at their convention?

earlthegoat2
April 29, 2011, 09:46 PM
I'll start with an objection I take a keen interest in - that the NRA is not politically orthodox.


You can say the same thing about republicans yet a few of us still vote for them.

rellascout
April 29, 2011, 10:13 PM
You know, I did warn y'all that I have a long-winded, abstract post that deals with this very thing (the narrow focus -vs- broad address or rights).

Keep this up and I will definitely post it.

And I am sure when others disagree you will then shut down the thread. :p

Nushif
April 29, 2011, 10:17 PM
3. Outdated magazines - not so much the NRA's fault but most of the magazine content is weeks and months behind by the time it hits print, just plain pointless for the internet age. Not to mention much of the rhetoric is extremely hyperbolic/melodramatic and makes them harder to take seriously.

4. Despite being a pro-gun organization and stating that they are politically neutral on all but gun rights, they openly embrace/endorse people like the discredited fool Glen Beck and have them speak at events. Why would I want to donate my money to an organization that pays for a crying madman who scribbles conspiracy theories on a chalk board to come spew his filth at their convention?

This! Lemme just rephrase that ...

3. Outdated <rhetoric> - not so much the NRA's fault but most of the [...] content is [...] behind by the time it hits print, just plain pointless for the internet age. Not to mention much of the rhetoric is extremely hyperbolic/melodramatic and makes them harder to take seriously.

4. Despite being a pro-gun organization and stating that they are politically neutral on all but gun rights, they openly embrace/endorse people like [some rather extremist dude at the end of either spectrum, really] and have them speak at events. Why would I want to donate my money to an organization that pays for a crying madman who [does stuff conspiracy theorists across the ages have done] ?

LawScholar
April 29, 2011, 10:17 PM
I am happy that the NRA supports both Democrats and Republicans. It lends them credit as a legitimate organization that seeks to promote rights instead of a partisan group.

By comparison, the ACLU has lost nearly all credibility by siding with liberals/democrats on almost everything.

The fact of the matter is, there are a LOT of gun owners out there. We are a diverse community. Not all of us have the same opinions on taxation, gay marriage, Roe v. Wade, or a host of other unrelated political issues. I say GOOD. The anti-gun community is also large and powerful, and if we pick on each other for non-gun related issues, the tent will get a lot smaller, and with it the formidable influence of the NRA.

TheCracker
April 29, 2011, 10:23 PM
Meh. Because the ranges near me have the annoying requirement of NRA membership.


Same here.

danez71
April 29, 2011, 10:27 PM
Because their scare tactics are, at times, no better than the anti's scare tactics.

I find it insulting that they, or anyone else, feel they must scare me to convince me rather than stating logical analysis.


Of course, this may just be a reflection of (potentially) society's need to be scared in order to take a stand.

M-Cameron
April 29, 2011, 10:50 PM
You don't understand--if I join I want to NEVER receive a single piece of mail from the NRA or anyone affiliated with them. Instead they send out tons of notices, crud and of course requests for more money. I'd give them money if they would agree never to speak with me or communicate with me in any way. If I'm interested in what's going on I just visit the webpage.

when you join, call them up and tell them that very same thing......you wont receive anything further from them.

Bmac1949
April 29, 2011, 10:53 PM
When Charleston Heston held the musket over his head and said his "cold dead hands" line they lost me. And when Lapierre said that not having an extended mag would have made no difference in Tucson they lost me again. I find this as big a problem a the idiots that want to take weapons from the public.

Double Naught Spy
April 29, 2011, 10:57 PM
All in all, the NRA is a well-intended organization that often doesn't present the facts in a manner that is fair and they hounded me like hell when I joined about all sorts of stuff. I emailed and called and the mailings never stopped. I rec'd multiple copies of Tales of the Gun, 2 medallion, 2 silver bullets, but never rec'd the darned NRA baseball cap I was supposed to receive for my 5 year membershp.

I found their political mailings to often be several weeks tardy. They send out urgent mailings about matters where I need to contact my representatives and it is for stuff where I contacted my representatives the previous month.

They mean well, but it bugged the hell out of me that my initial support wasn't going to be enough. Joining 5 years wasn't long enough.

I have no doubt that they probably spent more on me in mailings than my membership ever cost. I am defintely convinced that they were not good stewards with my membership money. I don't need the NRA to keep me several weeks late "up-to-date" on hot political issues. That service of the NRA is antiquated and I can get what I need for free off the internet.

M-Cameron
April 29, 2011, 11:00 PM
I have no doubt that they probably spent more on me in mailings than my membership ever cost. I am defintely convinced that they were not good stewards with my membership money. I don't need the NRA to keep me several weeks late "up-to-date" on hot political issues. That service of the NRA is antiquated and I can get what I need for free off the internet.

but does the internet fight for your 2A rights?

rellascout
April 29, 2011, 11:41 PM
when you join, call them up and tell them that very same thing......you wont receive anything further from them.

Simply not true. I am completely opted out of mailings but received the most recent DVD and coin. Called them to ask why they told me that the DVD list is a separate mailing list. I have to call Monday-Friday 9-5 to opt out of this special list.

:cuss:

ArfinGreebly
April 30, 2011, 12:18 AM
You know, I did warn y'all that I have a long-winded, abstract post that deals with this very thing (the narrow focus -vs- broad address or rights).

Keep this up and I will definitely post it.

:D

And I am sure when others disagree you will then shut down the thread. :p


*Sigh*

Y'know, maybe posting that discussion would be a bad idea.

It's all abstract and stuff. Guaranteed to slide right over people's heads, cause confusion, and generally invite all kinds of misguided debate and bickering.

And bickering typically turns into uncivil discourse.

And uncivil discourse leads to closing threads.

And I just took off my jack boots for the night.

rellascout
April 30, 2011, 12:26 AM
Y'know, maybe posting that discussion would be a bad idea.

It's all abstract and stuff. Guaranteed to slide right over people's heads, cause confusion, and generally invite all kinds of misguided debate and bickering.

And bickering typically turns into uncivil discourse.

And uncivil discourse leads to closing threads.

And I just took off my jack boots for the night.

Right because you are soooo much more intelligent than the avg THR member. People don't disagree with you because people don't understand you. People simply disagree with you.

:banghead:

kingpin008
April 30, 2011, 01:11 AM
but does the internet fight for your 2A rights?

In some cases, yes. In any case, the money it costs the NRA to send me all the junk they sent me (even the reduced amount after I called to stop the bulk of it) far, far exceeded the money I spent to join. How well can you fight when the bulk of your warchest is spent tossing mountains of literature and "free" stuff at your members?

Old krow
April 30, 2011, 01:25 AM
This sort of reminds me of those "is x caliber a good caliber for self defense?" threads. Some people say yes, some say no, but everyone agrees that it may potentially be better than a sharp stick with proper shot placement and the right ammo.

In terms of politics, the NRA is better than a sharp stick.

RhinoDefense
April 30, 2011, 01:44 AM
I don't support the NRA because they don't support NFA firearm ownership.

bbuddtec
April 30, 2011, 02:09 AM
"If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem."

Where's the solution, the alternative to your rants, ppl.

PS, if you know what politically is going on, you should be glad you have a gun, and not crying about your NFA's... they (legislators) are BOMBARDING legislation with crap anti-gun advances, and if you let them get this, and so forth, your machine guns are sooooo history. Welcome to the criminalization of US. (yes that means YOU) Stay in for the win, and opt out of extraneous mailings... (yes that's an option)

(loosely paraphrased) "...The only way for evil to win is for good ppl to do nothing"

THE DARK KNIGHT
April 30, 2011, 02:17 AM
*Sigh*

Y'know, maybe posting that discussion would be a bad idea.

It's all abstract and stuff. Guaranteed to slide right over people's heads, cause confusion, and generally invite all kinds of misguided debate and bickering.

And bickering typically turns into uncivil discourse.

And uncivil discourse leads to closing threads.

And I just took off my jack boots for the night.

Wow. Elitist much?

kingpin008
April 30, 2011, 02:22 AM
Wow. Elitist much?

One, he was likely being sarcastic. Two, he's right. The pro vs. anti-NRA fight has been done to death here before, many times. It usually comes down to folks trotting out the same tired reasons for hating 'em, then folks standing up and explaining why those reasons aren't reasonable, and back & forth until we all end up screaming at each other. Reasonable discussion becomes impossible. Do a search on the subject, you'll see.

XxWINxX94
April 30, 2011, 02:49 AM
I am a member, and yes the junk mail and phone calls are annoying. Why would I want to renew my membership if it doesn't expire for a year and a half? I guess if you just want the hat, or bag or whatever its fine, but for the folks who don't, we don't really need mail every month and calls every month.

Also what they tell us.
Please correct me if I'm wrong here, but they seem to tell me some unusual, absurd, almost unrealistic things about politicians/UN trying to take away our guns, which, to me doesn't make too much sense because most of congress after the election is republicans, who generally agree with the RKBA. While I believe them to an extent, is Hillary Clinton really out to round up all the guns via United Nations because the election went bad for liberals? I don't like her personally, but I would hope this isn't the case. What I'm trying to say here, is that it seems the scenarios they describe are a little more radical than they actually appear.

I googled this to find out what the deal was, and if the NRA was actually describing what is going on truthfully, without extending the story. The only thing I could find was this: http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=38103

That article is nearly a year old, could it be possible that the UN just waited awhile to address the issue RIGHT NOW like the NRA claims, or is the NRA just misinformed and looking for $?

The latest call was on this subject (Hillary & UN) and asked me to pledge 75$ or 35$ to help this cause. I told them I was in a bad financial situation, and couldn't at this time (which is mostly true). I haven't seen this on the news anywhere, and I'm having trouble finding up to date information on this on the internet.

Just a little hesitant to believe 100% of what they say because it seems a little far fetched. I think this is just because I'm not one of the lobbyists in congress and I don't see how they put the money to good use, and actually find out/address the issues, but I still generally support them and their efforts.

Neverwinter
April 30, 2011, 03:30 AM
I am happy that the NRA supports both Democrats and Republicans. It lends them credit as a legitimate organization that seeks to promote rights instead of a partisan group.

By comparison, the ACLU has lost nearly all credibility by siding with liberals/democrats on almost everything.
Conversely, I would still be happy if the NRA did not support both Democrats and Republicans if those politicians did not support the RKBA. Endorsement should be solely dependent on their support for the rights and freedoms, rather than of a misguided desire for bipartisanship.

It usually comes down to folks trotting out the same tired reasons for hating 'em, then folks standing up and explaining why those reasons aren't reasonable, and back & forth until we all end up screaming at each other. Reasonable discussion becomes impossible. Do a search on the subject, you'll see. Eventually it devolves into people making posts consisting wholly of ad homs with no actual argument. See the other NRA thread on page 1. Or not, because the majority of those posts were deleted.

TexasBill
April 30, 2011, 04:03 AM
It takes time to write the articles and columns; it takes time to proofread and edit; it takes time to assemble the pages; it takes time to convert the layouts to process the files for printing; it takes time to print and then it takes time to mail. Even with modern digital systems, if you can go from composition to mailing in six weeks, you are doing well. Most magazines want 60-90 days and most of that time is before the publication even gets to the printing press. Print, bindery and mailing takes just a few days.

Yes, the Internet is faster. But not everyone has the Internet or a personal computer. Of those that do have computers, many don't use them to surf the Internet. Many more people just prefer a print publication.

For every dollar the NRA makes through sales of NRA products or commissions on products they promote, like insurance and the credit card, is another dollar the NRA doesn't have to ask for in dues.

I don't mind that the NRA compromises: I may not like the compromise, but it's probably preferable to an outright defeat. It took years to wear away our Second Amendment rights; it will take years to wear away the laws that were enacted. Erosion is slow, but it works.

I do want the NRA to welcome both conservative and liberal members and I don't want it getting involved in other issues like a woman's right to choose. There's enough for the NRA to do with one issue: the rights guaranteed by the Second Amendment.

ArfinGreebly
April 30, 2011, 04:11 AM
Eventually it devolves into people making posts consisting wholly of ad homs with no actual argument. See the other NRA thread on page 1. Or not, because the majority of those posts were deleted.

Yeah. Sorry about that.

It's a jack booted thug thing.

ArfinGreebly
April 30, 2011, 05:30 AM
Right because you are soooo much more intelligent than the avg THR member.
Why, thank you. It's so seldom that anyone appreciates the sheer magnitude of my awesomeness.

Of course, your flattery is unwarranted.

Most of the THR membership is more experienced than I, and many of them are smarter. There is some real depth here among our members, and I have so much to learn from them there's a good chance I'll never finish.


People don't disagree with you because people don't understand you. People simply disagree with you.
Yeah. Who knew I could be that wrong? Hey, but at least I'm consistently wrong.

That's gotta be worth something.


All the same, it seems to me that my original jocular suggestion that I post a singularly boring piece of analysis in a discussion like this was poorly judged.

I fear it would only breed discord, and given that I'm supposed to eschew that sort of thing, I must conclude it was a bad idea.

Not the first time I've been wrong.

Won't be the last.

Neverwinter
April 30, 2011, 09:52 AM
Yeah. Sorry about that.

It's a jack booted thug thing.


I wasn't complaining. A lot of noise was deleted, and my argument wasn't censored.

Thumbs up to the jack boot.

All the same, it seems to me that my original jocular suggestion that I post a singularly boring piece of analysis in a discussion like this was poorly judged.The Analysis Which Shall Not Be Named must be quite the article if its mention can cause this level of conflict. Wait till we reach page 6, and then post it.

Also what they tell us.
Please correct me if I'm wrong here, but they seem to tell me some unusual, absurd, almost unrealistic things about politicians/UN trying to take away our guns, which, to me doesn't make too much sense because most of congress after the election is republicans, who generally agree with the RKBA. While I believe them to an extent, is Hillary Clinton really out to round up all the guns via United Nations because the election went bad for liberals? I don't like her personally, but I would hope this isn't the case. What I'm trying to say here, is that it seems the scenarios they describe are a little more radical than they actually appear.
Many of the "sky is falling" scare tactics are blatantly obvious on the first reading, but you aren't the target audience. They are aimed toward the people who wouldn't otherwise donate, but require that extra motivation. I won't go into the psychology of that mindset since it's beyond the scope of the thread and the forums.

You shouldn't be tithing to the organizations that you support, but at least give what you can comfortably afford, when you can.

M-Cameron
April 30, 2011, 10:34 AM
In some cases, yes. In any case, the money it costs the NRA to send me all the junk they sent me (even the reduced amount after I called to stop the bulk of it) far, far exceeded the money I spent to join. How well can you fight when the bulk of your warchest is spent tossing mountains of literature and "free" stuff at your members?

where do you think the NRA is getting their mailing supplies.....Staples?
they arent paying $7 for a box of envelopes.

they buy those mailers by the truck load, im willing to bet each mailer cost on the matter of pennies.

rbernie
April 30, 2011, 10:39 AM
I just got a new pair of jackboots, and this is the perfect thread in which to break them in. So, I'm closing this thread and further officially declaring a 48 hours cease fire in the NRA love-vs-hate threadfest of late. I do not suggest that any of y'all take the time to open yet another thread to replace the ones that have been closed, because that will likely result in sanctions that you do not want.

If anyone wants to evaluate the arguments for/against supporting the NRA, we have a long history of threads here on THR that are available via the search function.

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