Author Kenton Long
I thought I might comment on the dilemma in which Glenn Beck finds himself this week. Glenn and The Blaze have been shining a light on a dark secret in the National Rifle Association (NRA).
The NRA is well known for their good work supporting our Constitution’s 2nd Amendment—our individual right to bear arms. The NRA started in 1871. It currently has over 4 million members. Regular membership is $35 a year. Lifetime membership is $1000. Proceeds from membership dues primarily support firearm safety, marksmanship, shooting sports, hunting, self-defense, and lobbying pro-gun legislation. The NRA “donates” millions of dollars to election campaigns of politicians who support our 2nd Amendment.
Glenn Beck is calling out NRA Board Member Grover Norquist. Norquist is accused of consorting with and inviting the dark influence of members of the Muslim Brotherhood, a terrorist organization. Mr. Norquist denies the accusation.
Here is Glenn’s dilemma. Maybe some of us share it, at least in part. If this is all true about Grover Norquist, does Glenn cancel his NRA membership? Or, does Glenn simply cast a vote against Norquist in the next NRA board election, and leave it at that?
Glenn of course has additional considerations to ponder. Glenn has influence with millions of fans, many are staunch supporters of the NRA—dues-paying members. Although Glenn’s influence may not extend to affecting the outcome of NRA board elections, if Glenn cancels his membership many of his fans will likely follow suit. The effect may in turn reduce the NRA’s ability to influence elected officials and pending legislation.
That’s Glenn’s dilemma: stick to his values and shun the NRA, OR exert a limited influence and let the chips fall where they may. The NRA after all is one of the most powerful lobbyists in Washington D.C., and Norquist is just one of its many serving board members. Is putting up a fuss over one bad apple worth threatening all the good work the NRA does?
I don’t see this as a dilemma even from Glenn Beck’s point of view. Here is the reason Glenn finds himself in a bind: you can’t make apple pie out of lemons. In other words, Glenn is trying to make something good out of bad ingredients. Somebody switched the ingredients long ago; we’ve just forgotten a switch was made. We’ve grown used to the switch, the lemons. This is Progressivism perfected—make the present choices impossible.
I like the NRA. I’ve been a member of the NRA on and off for years. My dad was a member of the NRA. I always feel a sense of comradery when I see the NRA round black and red bumper sticker on the back of cars. I proudly wear my sticker on my range bag. So, I’m going to put this bluntly. I don’t give a damn if the NRA runs out of money to bribe politicians on Capitol Hill.
Election campaign bribery—lobbying—of elected officials is unprincipled. Lobbying is, in part, why we are “progressing” away from the Founding principles of our nation. Principles like the 2nd Amendment.
The NRA supports the shooting sports, marksmanship, gun safety, competition, hunting and self-defense. All that is well and good, and I gladly support those efforts, but frankly the 2nd Amendment isn’t about sports or hunting or self-defense. The 2nd Amendment was ratified by two-thirds of the states because it gives we the people the means of over throwing a tyrannical U.S. government, should it ever come to that. It gives us the means of taking back our country from a government who side steps the rule of law and disregards the U.S. Constitution.
Lobbying is the lemon. The NRA is lobbying Congressmen. It’s disgraceful, as all lobbying for favors with bundles of cash is disgraceful. That’s why Glenn Beck can’t make true apple pie out of the situation—we’ve been making apple pie with lemons for so long we forgot what true apple pie taste like. When you have the right ingredients, the recipe comes together easy as pie.
Bottom line. I don’t need the NRA or any lobbyist in Washington D.C. to protect my God-given right to bear arms.
“Well,” you say, “the NRA has almost single-handedly kept guns in the hands of lawful gun owners. We need the NRA.”
And I say, “Well, if that be true, then the NRA is single-handedly responsible for delaying the inevitable conflict to restore our constitutional republic. Maybe it’s time we let the Constitution speak for itself, and trust the wisdom with which it was inspired.”
Please keep up the good work of supporting the shooting sports, hunting, and self-defense. But, stop the shameful work of bribing politicians, thereby perpetuating the filth that obscures the writing on our Constitution. We don’t want or need a lobbyist to defend a right we are prepared to die for. We’ll take care of that. Much appreciate your work to improve our marksmanship.