NRA watchers will tell you that the gun rights group is dragging itself kicking and screaming into the 21st century. The NRA has hired a squadron of commentators who are as far removed from the racist, redneck OWFG stereotype as Barbara Palvin is from Jabba the Hut. While much of the resulting YouTubery begins with a disclaimer separating the NRA from the editorial content therein, the Life of Duty segment does not. In the episode above, the on-screen talent tells viewers that the U.S shouldn’t have pulled out all its forces from Iraq. Huh? What’s that got to do with guns? In fact, doesn’t that kind of partisan politics alienate potential firearms freedom folk? Shouldn’t the NRA steer clear of all non-gun-related issues?

53 Responses to Question of the Day: Should the NRA Talk About Iraq?

  1. Should the NRA Talk About Iraq?

    Nope.

    In fact, doesn’t that kind of partisan politics alienate potential firearms freedom folk?

    Yep.

    Shouldn’t the NRA steer clear of all non-gun-related issues?

    Not absolutely but as a general rule, yes. The NRA shouldn’t be even offering alternative solutions like they did after Sandy Hook. These are some of the main reasons I am not an NRA member anymore.

    • If I wanted my dues money to go toward advocacy of foreign policy, I would have sent it to organizations founded for that purpose. I don’t think MDA or any of the other Bloomberg-funded anti-gun groups will be diverting their attention to such issues (their Code Pink cousins have that on lockdown, anyway), which means that any focus diverted from second-amendment advocacy represents potential ground lost.

      • +1. Most of us aren’t going to disagree to keep heroin out of the US and I think money spent on foreign aid is better used to destroy poppy fields worldwide but the NRA should remain pure and focused. If the NRA wants to be associated with other advocacy groups that’s fine.

    • x 1,000,000,000,000,000

      also: a lot of shooters and fence jumpers in the media have had PTSD. Seems like this is a risky strategy that could backfire.

  2. Yes, like how they blamed video games for Sandy Hook. They simply used anti-gun tactics but instead of blaming guns, they blames electronic inanimate objects known as Playstation.

    While they are at it, they should get rid of their Wine Club propaganda as well.

  3. What John said except about Sandy Hook. They were trying to be helpful, and the media comments about gun ownership and gun rights made it necessary for the NRA to say something.
    And Col. Grossman also talks about video game influence as desensitizing people to violence as well as providing models for attacks. As at Columbine? I don’t recall the details.

    • I believe that the NRA had good intentions but there were thirteen sentences in the Sandy Hook statement that I could not, in good conscience, stand alongside. The choice to give a former DHS head unquestionable power (at his insistence) in leading things up really pissed me off. These are the ways that the NRA can alienate libertarians to the point that they cannot be a party to the organization no matter how steadfast we are about the right to keep and bear arms. If they simply focused on the right to keep and bear arms while remaining silent on ancillary topics, I could’ve remained a proud NRA member. At least, that’s one man’s opinion.

  4. As a political strategy of anti gun groups, the NRA was castigated for not being “part of the converstation” at the same time those same groups were vilifying the NRA for even speaking.

    Part of the ideals of Freedom and Democracy as it related to Firearm ownership is legitimately entangled with the actions and reasons why the US got involved in Iraq. The US soldiers that went there had those ideals in mind.

    After looking at the “Life of Duty, Defending our America” I think it is a reasonably connected to US firearm ownership and rights. I am interested to see where it goes.

    I don’t think the NRA would be well suited to “stay in the closet”. They have made some blunders with the video game blame but that is what happens when people are honest about what they think. We know that anti gun groups have not been so honest.

    • Perhaps our culture is changing in a manner that threatens key issues that are important to them.

      Perhaps they determined that without shoring up the culture, those key values wouldn’t be protected.

      Perhaps we’ll see less activism from them when things are on a better path.

    • yeah, sorry, I think keeping Iraq and Iran at a standoff was a better strategy. And, getting Europe to pony up money to defend itself instead of us. Now all that military equipment is coming back and being used on Americans. The Iraq war did not do much other than extend the post-WWII culture of dependency on American firepower.

      Standing armies are dangerous for a reason.

      Over the long term “wars” are won with a strong economy, not with guns. We beat Russia hands down because their economy was crumbling.

      The NRA has no business getting into this arena. It is risky and may alienate some libertarian-leaning or liberal gun rights advocates.

    • Nope … because I’m not a Republican (or a Democrat). If I vote “republican” it’s to protect the 2nd Amendment (in most cases). The NRA stands for the N.R.A. … (please don’t get it twisted).

      • …except that the NRA will support anti-gun or compromise candidates, because they seem to more interested in getting republicans elected than gun-rights supporters.

        Look at the NRA endorsements of candidates in the past. There have been many cases where they endorse a party-line republican with a B rating from GOA, while ignoring a more anti-establishment republican with an A or A+ from GOA.

    • They should remember the “R” is for Rifle.

      As in, G-U-N.

      They’re already way too cozy in supporting Establishment candidates.

  5. I agree that they should try their best to stick to gun-related issues. However, I won’t toss away my membership because I have a different point of view than that expressed by another member. If there was a topic that they stood on as policy/principle of the group’s core beliefs, then I’d still only take it under advisement. The main focus of the NRA is the protection of the 2nd Amendment, and that is way more important than feeling totally okay with every opinion another member might have.

    There are a lot of U.S. Citizens who have viewpoints I truly am opposed to. However, I wouldn’t renounce my U.S. Citizenship because of it.

  6. There’s certainly nothing wrong with NRA doing things like.. participating in Make a Wish or.. similar benign promotions.

    But getting involved in partisan politics that are unrelated is stupid. Gay Marriage, Pot Legalization, Foreign Policy… Just.. Don’t. It has nothing to do with firearms rights, and if there’s some marginal case where it does, speak to protecting the firearm aspect of it, and nothing else.

    I recognize that the majority of the NRA and gunowners are conservative folks; nothing wrong with it. However it’s not in the interest of the overall movement to only cater to such folks. The NRA should not be an extension of the GOP and this shouldn’t be that complicated.

  7. I don’t know. Perhaps the cultural differences, to include the RKBA’s place in that distinction is something worth talking about.

    If the American military went “poof” tomorrow and disappeared we wouldn’t be helpless sheep. When I was in Iraq, the civilians were allowed to keep one AK and I think two mags in each home. That could have changed after we left, but either way ISIS seems to have swept both IA, IP and non-consenting Iraqi civilians aside.

    If ISIS rolled into my neighborhood they would take heavy losses. Come at me bro.

  8. Ignoring the threat of ISIS and radical and not-so-radical islam isn’t going to make it go away.

    Absolutely it’s tied to the fight for gun rights.

    ISIS is coming. When they get here and launch their first attacks, it’s going to be bloody.

    Gun rights are critical to Americans to ensure we don’t end up defenseless sheep against these monsters.

    John

    • In order to do all that the NRA need do nationally without alienating a wider spectrum of thought is to focus on promoting and protecting:

      A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

      If the NRA is prepared to solidly connect most, if not all, of its national messages to that sentence then it just about covers RKBA matters in relation to these issues.

  9. The MRS should stick to LIBERTY issues revolving around the Second Amendment and the Bill of Rights. Period. It has no special expertise in other areas and mustard not echo the Republican Party in intermurral spats within the Congress and with the President. Keep the point of the spear of freedom sharp.

  10. I would venture to guess that many in the upper ranks of the NRA are neocons…so warhawking is kind of their thing…

  11. Part of the best and hardest hitting facts about the NRA is the consistent nonpartisan nature of it’s approach. You can see all types of people in the NRA because of that. And that’s a strength. Now I’m worried their going to come out all crazy right wing and chase everyone else out.

    • They should focus on the 2nd Amendment, and anything else Constitutional that pertains to the RKBA.

      Steer clear of all other issues.

  12. The road to hell is paved with good intentions, so it doesn’t matter what the NRA’s “intentions” are when they talk about something other than gun rights.

    They need to stay focused on the matter at hand, which is the rights of all Americans to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the 2nd and incorporated by the 14th amendments. The second they start playing in any sort of partisan politics or stories, they turn off people who do not agree with them on those points.

    The fact is, the discussion is dominated by conservatives as it is, and very few of those conservatives are at all shy about painting all liberals with the same brush. The fact is, there are many less than Tea Party approved gun owners out there, and we need them on our side as much as we need everyone else. At best, there’s 100M gun owners in this country, which means that 2/3 of this country doesn’t own a gun, and may or may not be predisposed to agreeing with the rights guaranteed by our constitution, and not every one of the 100M gun owners in this country agrees that we don’t need more gun laws. The NRA is only 5M members. One of these days, with the monetary support of guys like Blooomberg, the members of congress are going to realize that we’re drastically outnumbered and the NRA is outnumbered by 200M+ voters.

    It behooves the NRA, as well as it’s membership, supporters and the gun community at large, to remember that we need to win hearts and minds as much, if not more, than we need to win court cases. One of these days, some fool congressman and a couple of friends are going to get it into their heads to change the 2nd Amendment, and they’re going to do so after a series of particularly nasty mass killings. When that happens, that group that hugely outnumbers us has the numbers to make the kind of changes we never want to see coming.

    Which is why I think the NRA and everyone else for that matter should stick to the discussion of this civil right alone when we’re out there on the internet and in front of the press.

  13. Gun rights ONLY. And only supporting real pro2A politicians. Not McCain or Mitt. Of course we should have stayed in Iraq. We conquered their s##t sandhole. But I shouted(loudly to everyone) it was better to contain Saddam. Buffer to Iran. Whatever…now the countdown of the apocalypse is perilously close. Even so COME LORD JESUS.

  14. that mini ‘series’ has turned into a rah rah policestate-dildo fuckery circle jerk among fat overweight has beens.

    next!

  15. I think if the NRA wants to comment on Iraq they should stay away from the whole political aspect and focus on the fact that a lot of this is occurring because the citizens themselves are not armed. Granted some of them have done so themselves, there would at least be some chance to defend themselves from incursions into their cities by ISIS.

    • That’s how I would like to see the NRA handle it. Perhaps they could also stress the importance of cultural change to support the individual right to keep and bear arms as well as other Liberty; with the RKBA being the most crucial.

      IMHO, most headline issues today that even slightly relate to the RKBA could be handled by simply pointing out that the right helps buffer against the perceived negative effects of this issue or that problem. Illegal immigration, ordinary crime, police state, illicit drug smuggling, etc. The NRA doesn’t need to directly address these issues. If it feels that it must make statements about other issues, those statements ought to be limited to how the RKBA might address all or part of the issue and/or the issue’s collateral damage. If the NRA can’t do that then it ought to remain silent on it. Of course, there might be an exceptional situation arise here and there but overall that should be the NRA’s policy, IMHO.

  16. If ISIS decides to make a pit stop in my subdivision, me and my household are more than ready for them as$holes.

    In the mean time, NRA should keep it all 2A. I don’t want to hear about ISIS from the rifle association. I can turn on the news for that, they sop that sh*t up with a biscuit. It’s all the damned media talks about.

  17. If the NRA wants to talk about government policy on non-gun issues they should stick to constitutional issues. That also means not giving their favorite politicians a pass when it comes to violations of the Fourth Amendment such as reauthorizing the Patriot Act. If they want to talk about foreign policy, how about starting with Congress abdicating their responsibility to declare war when military action is considered. The Second Amendment is key to protecting the rest of the Bill of Rights but they all are of equal value.

  18. Breaking News!
    Iraq Has Fallen
    Obama Is Bombing The Syrian Govt
    Get In Front Of The Curve
    Talk About Obama’s Caliphate, In America!

  19. No, no, no, no and NO!

    The NRA should stick to defending the rights of U.S. citizens to keep and bear arms!

    The NRA is already far too cozy with The Establishment as it is.

    This is pandering behavior.

  20. I support the NRA branching to the extent of supporting other Constitutional rights, as in if the 2nd is such a big deal, why can you blow off the 4th? Some will disagree, but hey. OTOH, a political decision like troops in Iraq has nothing to do with any civil rights or anything else NRA is chartered to address. Suspect somebody goofed.

  21. Not only no, but hell no. The NRA has one job to do and they need to stay focused. Let everyone else worry about Iraq.

  22. I dont mind the NRA making this kind of video- I thought it was pretty well done, and rare, vs elsewhere on line. Much better than shooting from the hip, by Mr LaPierre, even though he WAS right about training some teachers or principals to be CHL holders.

    I didnt see “GOP” written on this, nor did I see a one-sided “rah-rah”. I saw a bunch of guys sitting around a table talking respectfully and listening to one another’s different opinions. What a contrast to the typical MSM talking (SHOUTING) heads panel…or the deceptive attack ads pumped out by Bloomberg, et al.

    All by itself, this is “a picture that tells a thousand words” about what the best of NRA members are about, whether target shooters, hunters, MSR aficionados, and 2A rights advocates, all of us, who represent a
    the culture of individual freedom, personal responsibility, the belief in standing for something – vs wanting the Gubmint to take care of us-

    We are in the midst of a culture war- those of us who believe in American exceptionalism vs the Progtards cultural Marxism, that seeks to tear down our belief in democracy and freedom.

    There is a valid debate to be had about Iraq, and what to do now. I didnt see anyone saying for the NRA, any specific details, but rather general principles.

    And besides- The NRA is producing what- 2 out of how many, talking about foreign policy, as an aspect of freedom, and gun rights? How can that be bad? Should we all cower in political correctness about what we should discuss or not, as gun owners?

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