The NRA, poop creek and a missing paddle
By J.J. Jackson
The National Rifle Association is not getting a lot of rave reviews from its members lately. In fact, by the looks of things the NRA is willfully taking a long trip up poop creek and doing so without a paddle in hand. What is the whole kerfuffle that has led to this ill advised journey? Well it revolves around Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Harry Reid is in a not so surprising fight for his political future in Nevada. The incumbent Senator is in a statistical dead heat with challenger Sharron Angle. It is a fight that Mr. Reid does not believe he should be in and that he cannot understand. He thinks the people should adore him. If they are foolish enough not to blindly love him then at least he thinks they should show him some respect as a long term representative of theirs in Washington and simply reelect him. Whether or not Mr. Reid deserves such respect after years of trashing individual liberties and our Constitution is of secondary importance. For you see, Harry Reid is a member of the ruling class and he is entitled.
Like most liberals, Harry Reid is a walking gaffe machine. And when he speaks his lack of substance becomes regularly apparent. So it would be a surprise for most to learn that the NRA is actually considering endorsing this man in the 2010 midterm elections. Yes, you heard right, the NRA is actually considering endorsing a man who has been a leader in our charge off the cliff and into the abyss.
The NRA's excuse? They claim Harry Reid has been a champion of gun rights. On top of that they opine that if Harry Reid is defeated and the Democrats retain control of the Senate someone unkind to gun rights might take his place as Majority Leader.
The NRA further defends this excuse by saying they are a single issue group and that the only important issue to them is the Second Amendment. What they fail to understand is that for the vast majority of their members other issues are important too. You know, like upholding and defending the Constitution, the whole Constitution and nothing but the Constitution? That is something Harry Reid has never done in his entire career in national politics.
The NRA's support for the Second Amendment is admirable. But if there is no Constitution left because it has been torn apart by liberals like Mr. Reid how far does such support go? It harkens back to the silly slogan of leftists with regards to how they said that they support the troops but not their mission. The NRA is just as goofily saying that they are prepared to support Harry Reid but not his goal of a socialist America.
Sharron Angle on the other hand, as much as disgruntled Republicans in Nevada who are upset that their candidate did not win the primary and even Harry Reid himself hate to admit, has a much firmer grasp of reality. That includes her understanding of the Second Amendment. For example, Sharron Angle once correctly noted why we have a Second Amendment. She stated that it was to allow the people to protect themselves against government tyranny and perform the role the altering or abolishing government unkind to individual liberties. This is what the founders discussed in our Declaration of Independence. She said, with regards to the continual usurpation of individual liberties and state's rights by those in Washington, Harry Reid included, that, "If Congress keeps going the way it is, people are already looking toward those Second Amendment remedies."
Pretty straightforward right? Pretty much in line with the Founding Fathers right? The Reid Campaigns response? To call such talk, "crazy" and denounce her in a campaign ad.
So the fact that the NRA is even thinking about endorsing Reid is perplexing to many. And based on what I hear, it is perplexing to the NRA members too. What I am being told, and my email box is filled daily with notes from Americans discussing their dismay over this, is that the NRA is being inundated with angry responses from their members. These members are threatening to never again support the organization if they choose to endorse Harry Reid. The potential loss of revenue alone would be enough to make a sane person stop and take notice.
I am one of those angry souls who have told the NRA in no uncertain terms that there will be not one solitary penny more coming from me until they stop this insanity. Despite the repeated, and weekly, requests for donations I have not opened my checkbook to them because they have not agreed to not support Harry Reid. The latest request, which I think belies the trouble they are having, even included a $400 credit that I could use towards becoming a life member. This life membership is usually a $1,000 cost. So the markdown to $600 is significant and not something a group having no trouble at all raising funds would be doing. That is, if you ask me any way.
The leaders of the National Rifle Association must be daft to even be considering an endorsement of Harry Reid. They must be even dafter to even make this consideration public knowledge. The smart thing to have done, and it would have only taken someone of marginal intelligence to come up with, was to punt on the Reid and Angle race and endorse neither candidate if they really had their heart set on a liberal like Harry Reid returning to office.
The really smart thing to do in the Nevada race? That would be to endorse Sharron Angle.
And this would have only take someone of slightly higher than marginal intelligence to come up with.
But as it stands right now the NRA is already too far up Poop Creek and missing that ever crucial paddle required to save itself. The cat is out of the bag with regards to how idiotic the NRA's leadership is. The outrage is swirling among the membership and donations are already being withheld. Sure the NRA is no doubt getting a lot of money thrown their way in a critical election year by people either unaware of their possible support for Harry Reid or people just willing to look the other way. But many loyal members are sitting with scissors in hand waiting for the NRA to commit to Harry Reid so that they can officially cut up their membership cards.
Even if now some semblance of rational thought enters into the brains of those at the NRA and the organization decides to not endorse either candidate or endorse the obvious choice of Sharron Angle, members will forever be wary of the intelligence of those at the helm. If the NRA wants to be a "single issue" organization and support a candidate now or in the future that has shown a willingness to throw out the rest of the Constitution on a whim and even one who calls an accurate and historical interpretation of the Second Amendment "crazy" then I say let them. It is their right to be stupid. And it will be their right to spend oodles of dollars begging all of us that have supported them over the years to support them again. Those dollars however will be wasted and in vain. Because, mark my words, if the NRA endorses Harry Reid officially or unofficially in November there will never be another check from my pocket going into their coffers.
That is my line in the sand. And judging by the looks of things a lot of my fellow Americans are going to proudly stand with me behind that line and tell the NRA to piss off.
J.J. Jackson is a libertarian conservative author from Pittsburgh, PA who has been writing and promoting individual liberty since 1993 and is President of Land of the Free Studios, Inc. He is the Pittsburgh Conservative Examiner for Examiner.com. He is also the owner of The Right Things - Conservative T-shirts & Gifts. His weekly commentary along with exclusives not available anywhere else can be found at http://www.libertyreborn.com.