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NRA commentator Don Raso posted a video Sunday [above] in which the former Spec Ops commentator argued that blind people should be able to exercise their natural, civil and Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. When anti-gunners caught wind of his message they raised holy hell (e.g. former Perkins School for the Blind jefe Steven Rothstein’s comment to “This video is not only disturbing but also misleading and they are using individuals who are visually impaired in a cynical attempt to further their extremist position on gun control.”) On Thursday, the NRA pulled Raso’s vid. So the pro-gun control group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America popped Raso’s spot up on their YouTube channel. Hang on . . .

Isn’t MDA owned by Everytown for Gun Safety, the same people who successfully demanded that YouTube pull any and all videos that included excerpts from their dubious public service announcement as copyright infringement? Yes. Yes it is.

On the other hand, I’m glad MDA saved this commentary from the black hole. I agree entirely with Raso’s commentary, commend him for publicly taking this position on blind people’s gun rights and regret the NRA’s decision to cave so easily on the issue. Worse, I have a sneaking suspicion that the NRA will now apply increased scrutiny to all their commentators, who were assured of the gun group’s non-interference when they signed on.

Extremism in opposition to tyranny is no vice, and this video is hardly what I’d call extreme. But then I’m not in the halls of power schmoozing politicians to protect the Second Amendment. Thank God. Even so, wrong answer, NRA.

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  1. Yeah; Good for Dom; Bad for the NRA. I’ve seen the NRA as just a less extreme gun control group. They support the NICS, nuff said.

      • Yeah; like any government program to “help” people; if the people actually got to where they no longer needed help, the government program would go away. Ain’t gonna happen.

        There was a short time here in NM where less people were applying for food stamps because the economy was doing better; so guess what?; the food stamp people start advertising on the radio and TV that there are people out there that might qualify for FS and they don’t know it. “So come on down and apply; who knows, you might lucky”.

      • Sorry, but that assumes that the fight ever WILL be 100%.

        If they win 100% tomorrow, the day after that the fight begins again. The anti’s will NEVER stop.

        But, aside from that, the NRA is far more than “just” fighting for rights. They have safety programs and manage instructor standards, have defined and certified marksmanship competitions and a whole bunch of other things.

        The NRA is not one dimensional.

      • People say things like that, but it ignores the history. True, we had Miller and the NFA back in the 1930s, and disagree with both, but SBRs and select fire isn’t all that relevant to most firearms owners. That’s not a justification for those infringements, just an observation of their limited impact.

        Where you start getting into some serious impact on widespread, day-to-day firearms ownership is with the 1968 Gun Control Act. That and subsequent regulations and liberal agitations prompted the NRA to establish for the first time, a dedicated lobbying arm, the NRA-ILA, in 1975. Only in response to relatively recent legal developments did the NRA start devoting the kind of energy we see now in terms of fundraising and lobbying. However, the NRA dates back to 1871, meaning they existed and prospered for over a century prior to this constant fight for rights environment.

        The group had other priorities then, which it still holds now, and it has added additional initiatives over the years, other than activism, in order to serve the community’s needs and remain relevant. I get what you’re saying, they need to do just enough to make progress so people keep supporting them, but not so much that that’s no longer a problem so people don’t need them. Well.

        Aside from the outright activism, though that will never end because new statists are born or built every day who keep the game going, the NRA’s plate would still be full with many other useful endeavours, like training for firearms safe handling and proficiency, for example. That mission alone, some might might even describe as being necessary to the security of a free state.

        • The NRA is the largest best known of the gun rights groups; which means they appeal to a broader population which means they are more centrist which means they are more statist and supportive of more state control than I believe in; which is why I look to GOA for the real low down on the congress critters for when I vote. This is also why I support SAF and JPFO.

          The NRA serves a number of purposes, but real “shall not be infringed” gun rights is not one of them.

  2. “Isn’t MDA owned by Everytown for Gun Safety, the same people who successfully demanded that YouTube pull any and all videos that included excerpts from their dubious PUBIC service announcement as copyright infringement? Yes. Yes they did.”

    Typo or pun?

  3. My wife and I are both blind. We have the largest firearms collection of our circle of friends. Perkins certainly doesn’t speak for me. This is just another reason I’m not a NRA member. I’ll support SAF and GOA all day…but crap like this is the exact opposite of advocating for my rights. If you can’t even support my RKBA against the people who regularly oppose you, what use are you to me? Sorry NRA, I take this personally. Had you left the video up and backed your commentator I would have gone out and bought a membership.

    • I agree with you 100%. I also have a good friend who is visually impaired and holds a Massachusetts carry permit (no, don’t ask how that could happen). Thanks for giving us your viewpoint.

    • Matt, the happy ending to this story is that you have a choice of groups to support and chose to support one. Thank you for standing up and being counted.

    • As an NRA member, I apologize. However, I will fight for your rights via the FPC, SAF, NAGR (kind of), as well as with my calls and letters to congress. The NRA is not perfect, but then again, neither is any organization, including TTAG, or the police agency I’m a part of.

  4. Jesus, is blocking comments a default option for posting YouTube videos or is MDA addicted to it? YT needs a rule where a percentage of a channels videos need to have comments enabled.

      • Dont you mean, “conversion”.

        In the “Faux Fakebook Fascist Mommies Working For Bloomberg To Crush The NRA”
        Order of Wacked Out Progtards sect of Holier Than Thou Secular Humanist religion,

        you Unbelievers are allowed only three choices.
        1. Convert (no guns).
        2. Pay jizhaya to live a little longer (ammo tax, universal background checks, national medical records to decide if you are eligible for seizure, you know if you are a vet on zoloft, etc),
        3. The Sword (foe ex: lose your job for false claims on national media, the left funds huge money to political opponent, etc).

    • Per the article, the NRA are the ones who took the video down in the first place.
      The crime here isn’t that MDA is attempting to rebrand the NRA’s product—the other side does the same thing all the time re-the recent video of an armed man breaking into a home and holding a woman at gunpoint.
      The tragedy is that the NRA would rather appease anti gunners rather than support the rights of citizens, disabled or otherwise. This is the exact opposite of how the process is supposed to work.

  5. Ok the advertisements between every article is annoying as hell…..I know you gotta pay the bills but damn it looks like a billboard at a bus station.

    • Does anyone ACTUALLY click thru and BUY anything at any of these idiotic popup ads? Here or elsewhere.

      Obviously the entire “business model” of google, facebook, twit with their “eyeballs” and ad links is a scam of an epic scale. Way beyond simple tulip bulbs. Hard to believed so much “smart money” has gone into such useless nonsense as buying stock in these nonproductive “business” or in buying such “advertising”.

      • It’s not about making sales, it’s about making impressions. A single ad doesn’t convince anyone to buy. 500 of the same ad and people get the impression. See 500 ads for a Beretta Nano and you just might think of the Nano first when you start shopping for a pocket pistol.

        The same goes for the zillions of political lawn ornaments you see every election season. You wouldn’t think seeing “John Q Publicmoocher 4 Congress” signs 100,000 times would influence the vote but it does.

  6. He’s spot on in this one. He actually says, a blind person’s rules of engagement may be very different than someone with sight, but that doesnt mean they dont have a right to defend themselves. He bases this on starting on the side of freedom and rights, makes a logical argument, puts a perfect example of a legitimate self defense scenario that a gun could help the blind (someone on top of them choking them… dont need to see sights for that) and yet the NRA pulled it.

    I can’t fault the silly, simple minded gun grabbers. I fault the NRA for pulling it and not having the nuts to say “Did you listen to the argument? please debate the argument instead of screaming “GUNS EVERYWHERE FOR BLIND PEOPLE!”

    Shame on the spineless, PR driven NRA. I hope Dom blows a gasket with them over this. Either they want commentary that pushing a RIGHT and freedom or they dont… Thus the big ass disclaimer at the beginning of every video. Spineless cowards.

  7. It’s crap like this that’s why I’m no longer an NRA member. While not blind, I have some rather serious visual impairments that make it more difficult for me to handle a weapon than most. I know these limitations and do my best to work around them. I know what I am and am not capable of and I’d wager people who are totally blind do as well. This is more projection from the Statist left– “We’re crazed and irresponsible, so you are too!”

    While I do not approve of Mr. Raso’s pro-police-militarization schtick, I agree with him here. He makes a valid point and backs it up with a well-reasoned argument. No wonder MDA got so incensed. They can’t handle reason.

  8. I recently had a debate online after showing a video of guy who had concealed 15 guns on himself to show the ignorance of anti open carry movements. It showed how you most likely are in contact with people all the time who are armed but you have no clue. It is a choice to live in fear just like if you live in fear of blacks, gays or a religious group. But more than this, when someone says they will get up and walk out if they saw open carry, it is dishonest for them to say they are afraid. If they were truly afraid they would want to keep a low profile, what they are doing is showing intolerance and expressing disgust.

    In response to my posted video, someone commented “I’m also a huge fan of NRA’s guns for the blind initiative : )” and another respond “Shhhhh, that really wasn’t the NRA’s initiative. It has been quietly put to pasture.” Needless to say, we had a debate over their stereotypes, fear and bigotry. Below is a summation of my responses put in a editorial format that I want to share here.

    Yes, a blind person should be able to own a gun, please don’t discriminate. There is zero reason to not let a citizen own one because they are blind and guess what? THEY CAN OWN A GUN, yep there is no law against it. Name one place in the US that bans them from owning one solely because they are blind? You cannot, and this once again proves anti-gunners sell ignorance and fear and yet we don’t have blind maniacs dropping people in the streets.

    Then the anti-gunners move on to “should a blind person be allowed to drive” Ahhhh, the apples and oranges debate. If you cannot win an argument on it own merits just removing the subject to another debate. The fact is blind people can own a car, just not drive it if they cannot pass a road test. I would also add that even if you banned blind people from owning a car, they still have unfettered access to them and they are not going out mindlessly jumping in to cars and killing people. Peoples preconceived notions of others is more scary than the reality, anti gunners are just living in fear of everyone.

    Being that gun ownership is a constitutional right, to take it from them there would need to be due process, and anti-gunners never concern themselves with that do they? I might add that there are varying levels of being legally blind and the idea that anti-gunners are rushing to the judgment that blind people are incapable of making good decisions is as stereotypical as someone who is open carrying being a wing nut killer. There are blind people who carry and to my knowledge there has never been an incident, but according to the fear mongers, the blood should be pouring in to the streets with a mindless blind maniac firing in every direction.

    The anti-gun community is rife with a bigot mentality, towards poor people, people of color and others that don’t fit in to their elitist world view, I guess we can now add the blind to their intolerant paranoia.

    For those that really care about the rights of the blind, I recommend this article on how they believe that they have the rights everyone else does.

  9. When I read the headline I thought Raso was showboating. After I saw the video I agree with him 100% and would think that handicapped advocates would be up in arms. As for the NRA; I hope they stick to the basics and don’t start trying to adopt the anti’s techniques and go for popularity. Although it’s easy to ridicule the headline the argument that our rights are not dependent on physical ability makes all the sense in the world.
    If that is wrong let’s stop putting in public entries and restrooms that are accessable to the handicapped.

  10. This really p!sses me off! My older daughter lost her vision completely, as a result of Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, when she was 10 years old. Both she and her younger sister were taught, as toddlers, the basics of firearms safety. Both of my daughters are proficient in the use of guns. They are now in their forties, and can be trusted to be responsible with guns. There is nothing in the Constitution that even suggests that individuals with disabilities have fewer rights than those of us currently able-bodied.

  11. You don’t need vision to be able to stick a snubby’s barrel into an attacker’s armpit and pull the trigger.

  12. Nra roll over and die. They need to be fighting the good fight tooth and nail not picking and choosing little battles here and there. I’m getting sick of this war of attrition attitude . If you hold out and one anti-gun group falls out one more will spring up. We will never win by attrition because just as the old saying goes an anti-gunner is born every day.

  13. I see nothing – nothing at all – controversial about what Raso’s commentary here.

    Maybe when my NRA membership renewal comes, I’ll suddenly become blind, too.

  14. Ok, here is the thing, blind is not necessarily a binary thing 0 or 1. There are variations is visual perception from the guy who has perfect vision to the guy who needs bifocals (me) to the guy who is legally blind but who can still see well enough to drive to the person who can not even perceive light from darkness. If the government is in charge of who sees well enough to get a carry license how are they going to draw the line. And why does the blind guy not have the right to defend himself within the bounds of what he is able. Denying a blind person a carry permit is a clear violation of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act).

    Perhaps we should be asking the Moms Demand Astroturfers if they really want to demand the repeal of the ADA!

    • EVERYTHING is some kind of “violation” of some BS section of ADA.

      Anything that the Jr Senator from Iowa (now finally retiring) the moron Senator Harkin ever supported is assbackward, wrong and back for the US. The guy is more useless that Schumer, Franklin, ___________. And a huge gun banner. The only major piece of legislation he had in 30yrs of sucking on the taxpayer teat in the US Senate. He LOVED HIPPA also (see above).

  15. Fighting for freedom? You are an extremist. Typical MDA.

    Back in the day people were punished for their crimes, not for their crimes in attempt to prevent crimes. Legislation to “prevent” crime contradicts the messages and inscribed rights on which this country was founded. We are not a communist nation. We are not Marxists or socialists. Punishment of the crime IS the deterrent, not legislation restricting your possibility to perform a crime. When we opt for the later then we are forfeiting our freedom and exchange it for the whim of a few politicians that get to say:

    “You are blind so you don’t need this.”
    “You are poor and live in a poor neighborhood, so you don’t need this over here.”
    “You are disabled, so you don’t need what the neighbor right next to you enjoys.”

    The purpose of the bill of rights was to ensure fairness and justice to the minority against the opinion of the masses. The constitution, designed in its day, was the very best they could possibly construct and whose theme and content lie in the basis of philosophy and that philosophy lies within the realm of “individual freedom” and “personal responsibility.” Two key concepts constantly being attacked in today’s time.

    Do you live in New York City? No you can’t conceal carry, but if you know the mayor you sure can and you can have a security detail around you that can as well.

    Another scenario – A blind man can have a gun in his home but not walk around with one like others can. And why? Simply because he is blind. The sheriff’s opinion is what stands in his way. It should not, because his right is guaranteed by the second amendment. Why would the sheriff think that a blind person is not suitable? Does the sheriff think that a blind person would take a shot at a far away object? Make no mistake, a blind person is aware that they are blind, they are also aware that they cannot make a shot an object far away with any real accuracy. Does the sheriff think that a blind person doesn’t understand the risks of shooting a pistol and being blind? I guarantee you, the blind person is aware of his limitations, aware of the risks to take a shot, and aware of the possible implications that would arise if a bystander was injured or killed – and more-so than the Sheriff. Yet regardless, we have the state with their hand up stating, I am not going to allow you to do this because this is my opinion. This is not how this nation was designed.

  16. Hey Wayne you have been infected with the diversity/political correctness bug. First you issued a bashing of the open carry movement, and had to retract it. Now you see some perceived slight to blind people or slight to “common sense” supporters or slight to SOME FREAKING BODY UNKNOWN. Wayne you need to get treatment for this disease pronto. otherwise it is gonna cause substantial harm to the NRA. I warned the NRA about this BS earlier and was blown off and ridiculed. You lost my support and money. Realize most folks don’t care about every circus freak who owns a gun. They also don’t want to see the NRA running like a scared cat when someone whines about offense. Just get back to 2A as it is written…”shall not be infringed.”

  17. Organizations on both sides of the gun debate benefit from the ongoing tit-for-tat bumper sticker campaign… their budgets have swelled, lots of new hires, national attention. Why would the NRA or Mothers ever want to conclusively resolve anything when every new tragedy or regulation is a fund raising opportunity?

    I’d donate to a more absolutionist and uncompromising guns right organization if I saw they were in it to fight rather than compromise/wimp out.

  18. As I’ve pointed out several times in the past, under Iowa law you must have a weapons carry permit to carry a taser (or knife longer than 5 inches) in a concealed manner. Denying a weapons permit to the blind is not just denying them the right to carry a firearm, but denying them the right to carry ANY means of self defense. While I totally agree with Mr. Raso on this one, I wish more POTG would point this out to the ignorant masses.

  19. First off, why are we giving hits to MDA videos? It’s simple enough to download the video from them and post it up yourself.
    (Although i do agree with pointing out the hypocrisy of MDA not wanting any of their videos online, but saving NRA videos)

    Second, Has it been released a public explanation why the vid was pulled, or just make it vanish with no mention of it? Has there been any attempt to get an explanation from the NRA? The video could have been pulled for an editing mistake, copyright infringement, slip of the tongue, or hundreds of different reasons OTHER THAN backlash from anti-gunners and it seems like if it was pulled for those reasons, it would be back up in a day or so, they should mention as such. If it was pulled for the backlash, they should also fess up.

  20. Oh, come on gun grabbers — use your brain a little. First of all, not all “blind” people are utterly and totally without any vision whatsoever. Many legally blind people simply do not have good enough vision for certain activities hence they qualify for the status of “legally blind”. Many can see large shapes and colors or can see quite well but with a limited field of vision. Such a person can accurately put rounds into a human attacker at close range without endangering bystanders. And yes, they can also accurately identify an attacker at close range without mistaking them for a family member or neighbor.

    As for the people who have no vision whatsoever, I believe their best option is to use a handgun with blanks. First of all, most attackers would have no idea that their intended victim was totally blind. As we know most attackers beat feat when they see that their victim is armed and the victim wouldn’t even have to pull the trigger. That is a totally fantastic outcome for the victim and bystanders. And for those few instances where the attacker decides to proceed anyway, the victim can begin shooting when the attacker is still far away. The attacker has no idea that the victim is shooting blanks and would assume that the victim simply missed. At any rate, most attackers will retreat at that point when the victim begins firing. Finally, for the miniscule number of attackers who continue their attack against gunfire, the victim can use the blanks to great effect on their attacker at contact range. And again, all of this without endangering family members, neighbors, or other innocent bystanders.

    Gun grabbers who oppose blind people being armed as I described are simply demonstrating once again that they are clinically hysterical.

  21. The Constitution affords Rights to ALL responsible, law abiding citizens, not just the ones that can see.
    So do we deny someone who has Tourette’s Syndrome their 1st Amendment Right because of their condition?
    Do we deny a blind person the basic right do self defense? Are we going to assign every blind person in the country a personal body guard?


  22. Rights cannot be legitimately lost because of disability, they can only be curtailed because of actions which directly endanger or harm others.
    A blind person has just as much right to a firearm as a sighted person, because no person need prove to the State a reason to own a firearm. That is an inherent right.
    Should a person with an IQ of 50 be able to vote? Obviously, that individual would lack the ability to understand the complexities of positions and candidates than a more intelligent person, but the participation in self government is a right. Others cannot legitimately take away that right because they feel the less intelligent person shouldn’t vote or that the vote will cancel out their more “enlightened” vote.
    Being blind doesn’t mean being dangerous, or unable to process information. It simply means a reduction in visual acuity and that alone can never abridge a right.

  23. EDIT – okay, scratch my original comment, as I watched the video now, to which I have to say, what is all the hoopla over? The video makes a lot of sense.

  24. I have no problem with the NRA exercising editorial control of content they distribute or somehow fund.

    But do it up front, not after, and especially in reaction to faux pc outrage.

    All that does is embolden the faux outrage nazis.

    And worse, make the NRA look like nervous old FUDDs with shriveled balls,

    who will not only give up their 1A rights at the first hysterical scream of some ninny, any ninny, and there will always be one, at least…

    and worse, throw yiur own 2A spokesperson under the faux outrage bus.

    The NRA is big enough to hire good advice, and leadership needs to trust that advice, so as not to fold later.

  25. It is disappointing they pulled it. Legally blind doesn’t mean you can’t see at all. Where do we draw the line? That is the question to ask the liberals on this when they try to exploit this issue like it is some kind of joke.

    I am paraplegic and I can drive and shoot, do they think I shouldn’t be able to? In my experience, the answer is yes, because they are bigots and think they can tell other people how to live. It doesn’t matter what their intentions are… they will always be arrogant bigots, it is a personality trait of theirs. Use that against them.

  26. All gun owners should be concerned about any move to deny gun rights to the blind. I say this as an attorney, as a gun owner, and as a person who is blind. If gun rights can be denied solely on the basis of blindness, it will not be long before the list of prohibited conditions includes epilepsy, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, deafness, depression, anxiety, chronic pain, heart disease, and all other conditions that gun control proponents think might impair a person’s ability to use a gun. Gun owners might eventually have to get a medical exam to prove they have the physical and mental ability to safely use a gun, and persons over 70 might even need to have an annual physical to show they do not have dementia or age–related macular degeneration. The truth is that there is no evidence that shows that blind gun owners constitute a greater risk than sighted gun owners. Blind persons are certainly not more likely to commit a mass shooting or use a gun in some other crime. The problem is that most persons are unfamiliar with the techniques that blind gun owners use, and the gun control groups are using this lack of knowledge along with myths and stereotypes about blindness to argue their point. The truth is that blind persons are capable of exercising good judgment as to when, whether, and how to use a gun. In a 2013 statement on gun ownership by the blind, the National Federation of the Blind declared, “blindness has no adverse impact on a person’s ability to exercise due care and good judgment,” and “a permit to own and/or carry a gun should not be denied to any individual solely on the basis of blindness.” As referenced above, an article discussing this can be found at,


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