Groups fill NRA void in gun rights movement
By GREG BLUESTEIN (AP)
ATLANTA The gun rights movement may have more momentum now than ever, but the groups behind it aren't all united.
Many are grass-roots organizations formed in the last few years because the powerful National Rifle Association was too busy, or too big, to help fight city and statewide gun laws. The constellation of smaller splinter groups are more aggressive and will play a leading role in hashing out the scope of the Supreme Court's latest ruling supporting gun rights, in part by filing lawsuits at the local level.
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One of the most influential upstarts is Opencarry.org, which this year led a high-profile campaign to urge Starbucks and other retailers to allow gun owners to carry their weapons openly within the stores. The NRA never endorsed the campaign.
"The NRA has, by necessity, had to focus the vast majority of their resources over the last few decades at the federal level," said John Pierce, who co-founded OpenCarry.org in 2004. "They're focused on general gun rights, what we can do to protect the most gun owners."
The NRA's Arulanandam said the organization has fought for the right to carry concealed weapons although some critics say the group isn't doing enough. It has also helped push legislation across the country that requires officials to issue firearms permits to people who meet requirements, stripping them of discretion. The NRA also supports pre-emptive legislation that reaffirms Second Amendment rights.
The group showed its influence last month when NRA lobbyists persuaded the Democratic-controlled House to exempt it and other large interest groups from identifying top donors.
"On any given day, the NRA is the only entity that is fighting at every possible level the legal level, the international level, the federal level and the state and local government level. Our challenges are multiple because we're active on multiple playing fields," Arulanandam said.
We all know it's because the NRA just wants to go along to get along and not make waves. IF in 1930 the NRA had really been about all gun rights we could all own full auto weapons like the 2A intended. Does that mean I want a bazooka? No, they're out of date. But if WE The People are to be as was intended in the Constitution to be the Militia also, then we would be enabled to own the weapons that are currently used on the modern battlefields. Just me sayin' it. Keep up the good work Mike. We need to stand together or surely we will hang seperately
When I was in Annapolis MD this past February to testify in support of the Concealed Carry Reciprocity bill (HB52), there wasn't an NRA official to be seen. As an NRA member was an embarrassment. I took my pin off my lapel before the proceedings began...
The NRA National Headquarters is in Fairfax VA. That is less than 1.5 hours away from Annapolis MD. If I can drive here from NC (6+ hours) on my own dime, then the LEAST the NRA could do was send a clerk to read a prepared statement or something. But they didn't send anyone.
We all pretty much knew that this bill was a lost cause in MD, but that's not the point.
It seems the NRA has been picking it's cases recently, and ONLY gives official backing to cases it KNOWS it can win--which is why they held off supporting Heller and McDonald for so long in the beginning phases of those cases. Seems sort of cowardly to me...
But this article is right--the local grass-roots groups were there in support. "MD Shall Issue" was there, and I think VCDL sent a person too. Several very well-spoken individuals from MD, VA, PA and other states were there.
But no NRA official presence...
I joined the NRA for the first time last year, and just recently renewed my membership, an action I am beginning to regret. I am very disappointed with the deal they made with the Democrats over the Disclose Act and allowing themselves to be muzzled. I am even more disappointed that they have come out in support of Reid, an avid anti-gun person who never met an anti-gun piece of legislation that he didn't like. All over a gun range in Nevada?!? I don't think this organization is looking out for it's members anymore, if it ever did. Or for gunners in general, member or not. I am seriously considering rescinding my membership and sending them my card in little pieces. I know I won't get my money back, but I will have the satisfaction of telling them where to go. IF and WHEN they start serving the needs and desires of gunners, then I may consider rejoining.
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; it's the only thing that ever does.- Margaret Mead
Those who will not fight for justice today will fight for their lives in the future,
Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well armed lamb contesting the vote. Benjamin Franklin
Our little group of around 25,000 members (many who do not OC) have been doing a lot more than the 4,000,000 plus member NRA. We don't play games we don't compromise, and we attack things locally thats how you get things done.
You know...I realize I'm a month late to this thread, but this has always bothered me.One of the most influential upstarts is Opencarry.org, which this year led a high-profile campaign to urge Starbucks and other retailers to allow gun owners to carry their weapons openly within the stores. The NRA never endorsed the campaign.
In all the video clips and interviews i've seen and heard, I don't recall even ONCE ever hearing anyone associated with OCDO (even remotely) 'urging' Starbucks to allow lawfully carried sidearms, nor did anyone single out Starbucks as a 'target' for such an effort.
Both of these claims come from 'the other side' (the Brady Bunch, et al.) and, in fact, reflect EXACTLY what they themselves were doing...targeting Starbucks, and urging them to adopt their viewpoint. In fact, there is a video out there of a Brady rally in Seattle where one woman is shown to, and I quote, "DEMAND" that Starbucks prohibit lawfully carried side arms...right there in the doorway of the store!
All we did, after being asked to leave one merchant of caffeinated yummyness (which was done without fuss I might add), was to take our business to another location where we were not unwelcome. Starbucks wasn't selected because we wanted them to take a position to openly support us...it was selected because their policies didn't discriminate against us, and we chose to reward them for that by giving them our business.
To claim that we DEMANDED that Starbucks adopt a policy of supporting us is inaccurate, misleading, and disingenuous...kinda like the term 'assault weapon'. We really should start calling out these 'reporters' on these defamations of character.
That's the difference between a top-down organization like Brady and a bottom-up, grassroots "organization" like OCDO.
Brady, at the top, decides to take action against Starbucks, so the leadership organizes the rank and file to do protests. On OCDO, the members discuss supporting Starbucks (without any demands). A large number of us, in many disorganized shows of support, get together at our local Starbucks and demonstrate that we are a bunch of civil, well-mannered, and benign folks, just going about our business.
Considering that we are part of a movement celebrating the sovereignty of the individual, it is only natural that we would operate in a bottom-up fashion, as opposed to having a tyrannical top-down structure.
Have so many forgotten about the GOA or is it just because that they are the LARGEST "NO Compromise" advocacy group???? And yes OCDO is very influential and very very imporatnt. God Bless OCDO and ALL of its members!!!
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." 1954
"Those that seek to limit or outlaw our [ GOD-GIVEN ] rights as men and women, are an enemy of mine and all patriots"
To the government: Take your filthy, dirty paws off my 2nd Amendment before you lose them.
An interesting question one might pose to another is this; "What or who/whom is the supreme sovereign in the United States"? Assuming they at least have a fundamental understanding of the term, they are more likely to answer, "the government" or "the supreme court" (the word supreme could throw them with this one). Probably they will not be prepared or even accepting of the answer you give when you say, "the supreme sovereign in this nation is We the People". Simply put, it is the people who are the final authority, the highest power, and the point at which all stops with their rank. There is no higher power or authority in this nation, in human form, that that held and reserved by and for We the People.
In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?
Si vis pacem, para bellum.
I think the main reason we are one of the most influential forums is because we hold the moral high ground while being willing to call out those who use subversive tactics to effect their personal agendas.
COMMENTS REMOVED BY ADMINISTRATOR: Bashing other gun rights groups
"My dedication to my country's flag rests on my ardent belief in this noblest of causes, equality for all. If my future rests under this earth rather than upon it, I fear not."
-Leopold Karpeles, US Civil War Medal of Honor Recipient
Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. Thomas Jefferson
Problem is we are not what the media like to report on, so getting the word out there is easy among folks here at oc.org, but how do we get it out to those that care but are not in this community of internet forums.
Word of mouth is number 1.
Yeah. I just visited it, caught the massively distorted article on the Zimmerman case, and nearly lost my lunch.
Good thing I have a strong stomach!