Over the past few weeks, readers of TTAG and the rest of the gunosphere have been given a wealth of valuable information about the Second Amendment and the assault on their rights being waged by Democrats in Congress—as well as a few weak-kneed Republicans—who are working in concert with the Obama administration. It’s understandable that many if not most of us would rather just be left alone. We’re all busy with our lives. But increasingly, the left in this country . . .
. . . does not want to leave you alone, and does not want to leave our freedoms intact. This is a time—perhaps even an inflection point in our nation’s history—when it’s critical for anyone who cares about our constitutional rights to get involved—now. Use the voice that the Founders gave you in the First Amendment to protect the Second. While it might seem like too much hassle or even intimidating, contacting your representatives in Congress to express your views can make a real difference in this fight. It will probably take 15 to 30 minutes of your time. This is a very small price to pay compared to the blood and tears spilled throughout this nation’s history to win the freedoms that we enjoy.
To make it easier, here’s a guide with links and some text that is yours to use. Just copy and paste, then either phone it in or email it. You are free to edit or add your own words, of course, but please remember to keep it civil.
If you want to do more than just contacting your own congressman and senators, the letter is followed by a list of Democrat senators who are up for re-election in 2014. Thanks to some handicapping by conservative blogger Moe Lane, their current re-election prospects are listed next to their names. Even if they’re not from your state, you can let them know that an anti-gun vote may mean more money or other resources sent to their opponents in 2014.
Text to copy/paste:
Dear Congressman XXXXXXX / Dear Senator XXXXXXX:
I am contacting you regarding the current proposals in the Senate and House that would restrict firearms and related accessories. I request in the strongest terms possible that you vote NO on any and all versions of these bills. Below I’ve listed the core reasons for the legislation cited by the sponsors, including Senator Feinstein and Representative DeGette, and my responses:
- The legislation claims that bans and/or severe restrictions on semi-automatic rifles (“assault” rifles) will help prevent events like Sandy Hook and Aurora. This is false. Despite the highly selective use of statistics by Sen. Feinstein, Reps. McCarthy and DeGette, and other gun control advocates, the previous automatic weapons ban did not have any measurable effect on gun-related crimes. Moreover, perpetrators of mass murders are always deranged, or criminals, or terrorists. They will find the means to kill regardless of any bans you may vote for. Adam Lanza was a mentally unstable man who happened to use an AR-15. He did not carry out his heinous act because had an AR-15. All these bans do is make it harder for law-abiding citizens to use firearms of their choosing, whether for personal defense, sports like target or competitive shooting, or hunting.
- The legislation claims that limiting or banning high–capacity magazines and features such as pistol grips will prevent events like Sandy Hook and Aurora. No, it will not. Attempts to ban high-capacity magazines or to isolate cosmetic features of guns reveal how intellectually bankrupt gun control advocates have become. It is ludicrous to claim that reducing magazine capacity by, say, 10 rounds or banning pistol grips is going to stop or even slow down a malevolent person intent on committing a crime. In the worst mass killing at a school in U.S. history (Bath Township Michigan), the murderer used dynamite. All these bans do is intrude on on law-abiding gun owners who want and use these features for lawful activities.
- This legislation and its sponsors claim to respect the Second Amendment rights of individuals. No, they do not. The Second Amendment doesn’t dictate what kinds of firearms are acceptable, or describe what firearms should look like. It doesn’t say anything about hunting, or how much ammo citizens can carry. If you think this is what the Second Amendment says, then please reread it. Carefully. There are many people in this country who do not like guns, and quite often, do not like people who own guns. That is their prerogative. But it is not their right to gnaw around the edges of the Second Amendment—a bulwark of this nation’s greatness—with legislation like the bills currently making the rounds. To anyone with a fair and open mind, these bills are nothing more than tactics that have been tried, and have repeatedly failed, in a long-term battle to strip us of an essential constitutional right.
I hope you will read and carefully consider this as Congress moves towards a vote on the pending anti-gun rights legislation. Many, many Second Amendment supporters, including me, will be watching your vote. We will remember it during the next election.
[optional: city / street address / phone#]
To contact your representatives in Congress:
If you are unsure who your congressman is, use this link:
Then simply do a search for their name to find their website, main email, and local phone number(s).
To contact your U.S. senator, use this link:
Most or all of the listings provided in this site should provide you with links to the senators’ respective home pages.
Here is a list of Democratic senators up for re-election in 2014, including ones facing some level of risk of losing to strong opponents. These senators, who may be more receptive to hearing from gun rights supporters, are highlighted in bold. (For more details, read Moe Lane’s article.) If you live in any of the states listed, it’s important to let them know you are constituent. If you do not live in the state, send a note anyway, letting them know that a vote to restrict your gun rights will lead to a monetary contribution to their opponent’s campaign.
Risk of losing seat in 2014
|Alaska||Mark Begich||Serious risk|
|Arkansas||Mark Pryor||Some risk|
|Colorado||Mark Udall||Some risk|
|Louisiana||Mary Landrieu||Serious risk|
|Massachusetts||John Kerry||Risk for Dems only if he vacates to become Sec. of State|
|Michigan||Carl Levin||Low risk|
|Minnesota||Al Franken||Serious risk|
|Montana||Max Baucus||Some risk|
|New Hampshire||Jeanne Shaheen||Some risk|
|New Jersey||Frank Lautenberg||Risk for Dems only if he chooses not to run|
|New Mexico||Tom Udall||Low risk|
|North Carolina||Kay Hagan||Serious risk|
|Oregon||Jeff Merkley||Some risk|
|South Dakota||Tim Johnson||Serious risk|
|Virginia||Mark Warner||Low risk|
|West Virginia||Jay Rockefeller||Low risk|
Already been doing that all gun owners must unit to win.
I’ve never written my representatives so many times in whole life…
I know, right.
Thank you for this. I totally agree — we all need to get involved and become more active. Coming from an IL resident who’s in the thick of it now (and who has never been really active before), it does take a little bit of your time but it will obviously be worth it.
Here are a few other things we can do.
1. Join one of the Second Amendment groups (NRA, SAF, GOA, your state’s rifle ass’n). The NRA has its faults, but it is the no. 1 group when it comes to the legislative/lobbying side of things. They have the clout to make wishy-washy Senators fear getting primaried or losing in the general election.
2. If you are already a member of these groups, consider a donation to the NRA-ILA. This is what I do: maybe skip drinking a few beers at the pub tonight, or eating out dinner tomorrow night, or buying a new Blue Ray player and the Anchorman DVD, and instead donate $10, $25, $50 or $100 to the NRA-ILA or SAF. Alternatively, you can buy an NRA membership for a friend. (No, I don’t work for the NRA.)
3. If you have friends who own guns and are Second Amendment-friendly, but who are not at all politically active (this was me two weeks ago), try to raise with them the importance of getting active now (i.e., contacting state and federal legislators). But if they are lazy, you are going to have to show them how to look up their legislators and what to say in an email/letter.
4. Try to raise money for the NRA or a similar group by getting creative. Have a bake sale. Or maybe throw a party and supply the keg if your gun-toting friends agree to toss you $10 for a cup. Or if you have some skill (barber, plumber, landscaper, etc.), offer 10 different people some free services (within reason) if they give you some money which, in return, you will aggregate and send off to the NRA/SAF/etc.
That’s all I got. If anyone else has some additional ideas, I can add them and try to make a list.
In regards to #3:
Send the lazy friends to the above link. Makes it much easier than looking it all up for them if they live in an area different than yours.
Great link. Makes it super easy. Thanks.
I already contacted my representatives 3 days ago, but thanks for the info on these others, I will be emailing them now…
There is a new facebook page up.
They are planning or attempting to plan protests at our state capitals on January 19th.
I have no idea how successful it would be but in Illinois it is much needed.
I too have contacted my senators and congress rep several times. Unfortunately one of our senators, McCaskill, thinks the 2A is about hunting. She’s a lost cause. Can’t believe we didn’t vote her out.
I shudder to think what could happen if some type of ban goes into effect. I don’t think it’s going to go as easy as the last AWB for both sides of the issue.
Perhaps because Todd Akin stuck his foot so far into his mouth, when he tried to poop, it made a black hole and sucked his political career in, too.
One of the places you can support information consumption is on Quora. I and a few others are engaging the Left there, and it’s tough going. You can see a typical discussion, here: http://guardamerican.com/index.php/blog/35-politics/412-guns-battling-it-out-on-quora
There has never been a more urgent time to unite as gun owners, but its sad to see it be a huge partisan issue. By the time a law gets passed in the current all or nothing political climate, it will be in-effective, riddled with loop holes, a huge tax expense and both sides will be unsatisfied with the result. And honestly that result is about the best we can expect realisticly.
You may also want to enlist, friends, family,co-workers, dentist,doctor, others you know, offer to give a gift NRA membership, tell them about the bens, and magazine, take someone shooting your treat (treat to lunch etc.) pull out the plugs, saw the tail end on Fox tv news they were talking with some collage top about getting RID of the Constitution as it’s out of date…. WOW!
Jay Rockefeller is a dog turd. I don’t know a single person that likes the man yet he keeps getting reelected.
Keep an eye on the Rockefeller seat. Rep. Capito (R) has already said she plans to run for senate in 2014 and would be Jay’s first serious challenger since 1984. Also, Rockefeller will be 77 in 2014 and has yet to announce that he will run. If he doesn’t, edge to Capito versus anyone else the Democrats would run against her. JMAO
We need to get on buses and show up in DC
Everybody’s always talking about sacrificing for our freedoms. How about doing what it takes to really get their attention. If 10% of the gun owners in America showed up for a peaceful little gathering I don’t think they could ignore us or pretend they didn’t get our letters. I’m serious. If you aren’t willing to do this everything everybody has been saying here is a big bunch of BS!
Date and time? I’ll be there.
While I agree we all need to write out Reps. I don’t think this letter template is appropriate or written well. Especially the threatening tone about watching how they vote at the end.
Canned NRA message is much better:
As your constituent, I strongly urge you to oppose any legislation to ban
so-called “assault weapons” and “large” ammunition magazines.
A previous ban on these inanimate objects was in effect from 1994-2004 and
had no discernible effect on violent crime. In fact, a study of the ban
mandated by Congress found: “At best, the assault weapons ban can have
only a limited effect on total gun murders, because the banned weapons and
magazines were never involved in more than a modest fraction of all gun
Tens of millions of Americans choose to own semi-automatic firearms with
ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds for the same reason as
law enforcement officers: they are effective for self-defense. One never
knows how many rounds he or she will need for self-defense or defense of
others, or how many criminals may attack. Thus having a firearm that
allows its lawful user to discharge multiple shots can often be the
difference between life and death. In fact, a number of studies have
shown that firearms are used for self-defense hundreds of thousands of
times to 2.5 million times annually. This amounts to guns being used 3-5
times more often for self-defense than to commit a crime.
Rather than expanding previously failed legislation that won’t curb
violence, but will affect law-abiding gun owners, I urge you to support
legislation to enhance school security and improve our nation’s ailing
mental health system.
Please reply to me indicating your position on Sen. Feinstein’s most
Kyle: A quick response to your note. First, I appreciate the contribution. The more ammo, so to speak, that we can throw into the Beltway better.
However, while I think the NRA letter is good as the one I provided, I think the fact that it is indeed a “canned” letter strips it of some its effectiveness. Hundreds of thousands–or more–of this text will go out, all of it identical. At some point sooner rather than later, the interns and admins in congressional offices reading them will know they are all coming from the NRA, and that they’re all identical. They will likely stop reading them after the first one or two.
I would encourage anyone to take the contents of both my note and the NRA letter –and others when you find them– and munge them to make new letters. That will have the most impact.
Regarding your comment about the “threatening tone,” I have to respectfully disagree. I don’t think anyone would mistake this for an actual physical threat. It is, rather, a warning that their jobs may be on the line depending on how they vote. That’s exactly what we’re talking about here. If that is “threatening,” then so be it. If you think about it, we’ve heard a lot of bromides about “having a national conversation.” But where is the evidence of this “conversation”? If they were interested in having “reasonable” conversation, then there would be hearings held and aired on CSPAN. That’s not happening, and I can assure you it’s not going to happen. They are going to do everything they can to shove this legislation down our throats, and it is up to us to shove back–including real threats that they will suffer consequences at the ballot box. The contempt that Feinstein, Obama et al hold for gun owners and the Second Amendment is barely concealed below the surface, and only barely camouflaged by a one-sided, corrupt media. Remember Obama’s famous teleprompter-less moment about those who “bitterly cling to their guns and religion.” Well, I cling to both, I vote, and I’m going to let them know it.
I appreciate putting information in one place like this. Thanks.
Buying firearms & ammo is also a vote. Every gun purchased is a FU to feinswine. I intend to vote for senators Smith & Wesson soon, Randy
I agree with this comment. I have never seen so many stores sold out of pistols, AR’s, AK’s and ammunition in my life. It’s really crazy out there right now. Hopefully in addition to voting with their wallets more people will start getting involved!
Just emailed about 70 guys and gals that play that Evil COD video game that has been causing all these mass shootings (lol) Getting everyone involved I can.
Hymmmn, Our Second Amendmant Rights, are “UNTOUCHABLE”!… The “Dick Act”, 1902; [SERIOUSLY!… ]. Also, known as the Efficiency of Milituia Bill H.R. 11654 or June 28, 1902, Invalidates All so called gun control Laws! “Dick Act”, Can’t be Repealed!….
Doing so, would violate bills of Attainder and Ex post Facto laws; which would be another Gross Violation of the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights!… Even, the “President”, has Zero Power, to Repeal this Law!…
I just wrote all my senators and reps again thank you for the well thought out letter.
Been reading that Obama wants to get retail gun sellers like Wal-Mart behind some of his gun control. We also need to tell all gun retailers that if they support gun control, they lose all of our business–not just our sporting goods business.
You lost me when you started blaming democrats and “the left.” What I love about gun culture is the desire to be left alone, to be afforded the freedom to do what suits you best regardless of what others think. That is a personal philosophy that guides my life.
To me this philosophy extends to more than guns, to Topics like gay marriage and adoption, abortion, and other social issues. It’s none of your business or Uncle Sam’s what guns I own, where I stick my pickle behind closed doors, and what my significant other and I do about an unplanned pregnancy.
It’s because of this basic philosophy that I cannot condone any reasoning or argument that makes gun rights a partisan issue.
Also, for the record, I have written an called my local rep and senator, and will continue to do so, and I usually go by “Kyle”, the guy up there talking about threatening tones isn’t me.
BlindKyle: Thank you for your response. I could not disagree with you more about this being a “partisan issue.”
There are certainly Democrats — many of them, I think, and I know some of them — who are gun owners and strong supporters of the Second Amendment. They are very upset right now. I also know more than a few self-described Republican voters who are happy to go along with various kinds of gun control.
But all that said, the push to take away our Second Amendment rights is overwhelmingly pushed by Democrats and “the left”. All you need to do is look at who is writing and introducing (and re-introducing, and re-introducing again and again) the legislation. If Romney had won the election, and the GOP had managed not to shoot itself and actually win enough seats to take over the Senate, I seriously doubt we’d even be having this conversation.