Today I was scrolling through my emails, which never seem to end, and came across an email from a gentleman named Bill Parks, that caught my attention. It was labeled, “An Open Letter to All Gun Owners in the United States of America.”
I suppose it caught my eye because I am one of those gun owners, and I was curious as to what he had to say. I almost expected it to be a rant about how we need more gun control, but I was pleasantly surprised when I read it.
Not only was he defending the second amendment but he was advocating the National Rifle Association (NRA). Considering I am a lifetime member of the NRA and a concealed carrier, I wanted to share with you what he has to say.
Bill Parks wrote:
Fellow Gun Owners,
Once again a terrible tragedy has occurred and once again the blame is put on guns and gun owners, the National Rifle Association (NRA) and anyone who supports our constitutional right to keep and bear arms, instead of on the real reasons that tragedies like this occur – mental illness, systemic failures on the part of law enforcement agencies that are responsible for preventing events like from happening, exposure of our children to extreme violence in movies and video games, exposure of our children to abuse and bullying on social media, a lack of discipline at home and in our schools, a failure to hold our children accountable for their actions, a failure to instill moral values into our children, a lack of God and Judeo‐Christian values in our children’s lives – I could go on and on but I think you get the message.
Unfortunately, every time a tragedy like this occurs, the anti‐gun supporters come out of their hiding places and start a full‐frontal attack on guns, gun owners, and our right to keep and bear arms. And they attack the NRA for leading our fight against these attacks – in Congress, in the courts or wherever the battle must be fought. The NRA is portrayed as an EVIL organization while the mass murderer is often portrayed as a victim, even though the NRA does more to educate and train gun owners in the safe care and use of firearms than any other organization and leads the pack with its’ “Eddie Eagle” program in educating children in firearm safety.
Corporate sponsors are quick to condemn the NRA and withdraw their support and partnerships, not because it is the right thing to do, but because they are too scared to stand up to the vicious attacks from the anti‐gun groups who condemn them for their association with the NRA. Well guess what, two can play at that game! As a gun owner and NRA member I can withdraw my support and patronage of any corporation that is ashamed of its association with the NRA, and hitting them in their pocket books hurts them a lot more than a bruised ego. Are you listening Delta and United? Avis, Hertz and Enterprise? Chubb and MetLife? (A list of corporations that have severed ties with the NRA is included at the end of this letter.)
So why am I writing this letter and telling you stuff you probably already know? Two reasons: (1) I want to ask gun owners a few questions and (2) I want to ask gun owners to do a few things for me and other gun owners. So bear with me while I cite a few statistics and then I’ll get to the meat of the matter.
According to estimates by the Congressional Research Service, as of 2009 there were over 300 million guns in the United States, or approximately 1.1 guns per capita. The National Rifle Association (NRA) estimates that this number has been increasing at a rate of approximately 4 million guns per year, which would bring the total number of guns at the end of 2017 to over 332 million, give or take a few million.
Estimates of the number of households in the US that own guns range from 35% to 42%. With an estimated population of 328 million people as of January 2018 and an average number of persons per household of 2.54 as of the end of 2017, the number of households in the US owning guns ranges from 45 million to 54 million.
Given these statistics, I have to ask the following questions:
“With an average of almost 50 million households in the US owning guns, why are there only 5 million NRA members?”
“With the NRA leading the fight for our 2nd Amendment rights, why aren’t there more supporters among the other 45 million gun‐owning households?”
“Are the other 90% of gun owners content to ride on the back of the 10% that contribute to and support the NRA?”
Given the importance of the work that the NRA, along with the National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR), Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) and Gun Owners of America (GOA), do on the behalf of all American gun owners, one would think, or at least hope, that membership in the NRA would be greater than 10% of gun owners, and far less for these other organizations.
With billionaires like Michael Bloomberg and George Soros funding anti‐gun organizations like “Everytown for Gun Safety”, “Moms Demand Action” and other anti‐gun organizations to the tune of tens of millions of dollars per year, the NRA and other gun‐rights organizations need the support of gun owners now more than ever.
And with news organizations like the New York Times and Washington Post, mainstream media like ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN and MSNBC, and social media like Facebook and Twitter publishing “fake news” that support the anti‐gun movement while hiding or blocking the truth and attacking the NRA, gun‐owners must do everything they can to support those who support us.
I urge each and every gun owner to do the following:
- Become a member of the NRA, or if you are already a member of the NRA, become a member of the NAGR, SAF or GOA. A membership in the NRA costs as little as $30.00/year.
- Send a donation to one or more of these organizations to help fund the fight for our constitutional right to keep and bear arms. If just one gun owner from each of the 50 million households would donate just $5.00 (less than the price of a pack of cigarettes, a 6‐pack of beer or a McDonalds Big Mack meal) to one of these organizations, that would be a total of $250 million to fund our fight. If each of us would send a $5.00 donation to all four organizations we would add $1 Billion to our defense fund.
- Contact the corporations that have severed ties with the NRA and express your disgust at their petty actions and let them know that you will sever all ties with them and no longer patronize them if they continue their current course of action.
- Contact your local, state and federal congressmen and senators and tell them to support the 2nd amendment and not give in to the demands of the anti‐gun supporters.
- Put aside partisan politics. This is not a partisan issue – roughly one‐third of gun owners are Democrats while the other two‐thirds are Republicans or Independents – it is an American issue. Yes, the Democratic Party is usually leading the anti‐gun effort in Congress but it is the far left wing of the party that is driving this agenda, not the moderate or right‐leaning side of the party. Do what is right, not what is politically correct.
Well that’s it. Thank you for reading this letter and once again, let me URGE you to help me and other gun owners, the NRA, and the NAGR, SAF and GOA in this fight. Oh, and would you please forward this letter to as many other gun owners as you know and ask them to forward it to gun owners they know, and so on.
Thank you and God Bless the United States of America
Full Disclosure: I am a member of the NRA (Benefactor Member), NAGR (Life Member), SAF (Member) and GOA (Life Member). I am not a paid spokesman for any of these organizations or affiliated with them in any way other than as a dues‐paying member.
National Rifle Association (NRA) 11250 Waples Mill Road Fairfax, VA 22030
(800) 672‐3888 https://home.nra.org/
National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR) PO Box 1911
Windsor, CO 80550
(877) 405‐4570 https://www.nationalgunrights.org/
Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) 12500 NE 10th PL
Bellevue, WA 98005
(425) 454‐7012 https:www.saf.org/
Gun Owners of America (GOA) 8001 Forbes Pl, Suite 202 Springfield, VA 22151 (703) 321‐8585 https://gunowners.net/
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com