The National Rifle Association (NRA) is the largest organization in the United States for gun rights advocates. It gained more than 100,000 new members in the first eighteen days after the slaughter at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 11, 2012. Representatives of the organization stated, “Our goal is to get to 5 million before this debate is over.”
The NRA is a participant in the national conversation about how to prevent gun violence. In anticipation of a meeting at the White House, a NRA official said, “We are willing to talk to policymakers about any reasonable proposals and plans; however, the NRA is hearing not just from Beltway elites and the chattering class, but real Americans all over the country that are hoping the NA is not going to compromise on any of the principles of the Second Amendment, nor are we going to support banning guns. But we’re willing to listen.”
After NRA officials met with Vice President Joe Biden and Attorney General Eric Holder at the White House on January 10, 2013, to discuss possible solutions to the violence in our nation, the NRA released the following statement after the meeting: “The National Rifle Association of America is made up of over 4 million moms and dads, daughters and sons, who are involved in the national conversation about how to prevent a tragedy like Newtown from ever happening again. We attended today’s White House meeting to discuss how to keep our children safe and were prepared to have a meaningful conversation about school safety, mental health issues, the marketing of violence to our kids and the collapse of federal prosecutions of violent criminals.
“We were disappointed with how little this meeting had to do with keeping our children safe and how much it had to do with an agenda to attack the Second Amendment. While claiming that no policy proposals would be `prejudged,’ this Task Force spent most of its time on proposed restrictions on lawful firearms owners – honest, taxpaying, hardworking Americans. It is unfortunate that this Administration continues to insist on pushing failed solutions to our nation’s most pressing problems. We will not allow law-abiding gun owners to be blamed for the acts of criminals and madmen. Instead, we will now take our commitment and meaningful contributions to members of congress of both parties who are interested in having an honest conversation about what works – and what does not.”
Millions of Americans are concerned about the willingness of President Barack Obama to destroy their Second Amendment rights. Many of them are flocking to gun shows and ordering guns and ammunition from gun shops. The Obama Administration has been the reason why gun dealers have been doing a booming business in the past four years, a business that greatly increased after the 2012 election and even more after the massacre in Connecticut. With their members steadily increasing in number, the influence of the NRA is also growing. Will their political contributions and influence be enough to protect the Second Amendment of all Americans? I certainly hope so!