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Rolling Stone’s Seven Steps to Winning the War Against Five Guns

Friday, July 18, 2014

Jazz trumpeter Miles Davis had it right in 1963 – coincidentally, the year that Colt introduced the AR-15 to the civilian market – when he named one of his band’s classic albums “Seven Steps To Heaven.” The release features exceptionally creative improvisations by Davis, tenor saxophonist George Coleman, pianists Victor Feldman and Herbie Hancock, bassist Ron Carter, and drummers Frank Butler and Tony Williams.

Rolling Stone can count to seven too, but without the creativity of the legendary musicians in Davis’ innovative combo.  In How to Beat the NRA in 7 (Not-So-Easy) Steps, the off-beat, out of tune magazine’s Tim Dickinson lays out a remarkably unimaginative seven-step plan to “empower gun-control advocates to stop bemoaning their helplessness, and start carrying the day.”  To anyone who has followed our previous reporting on the gun control playbook entitled Preventing Gun Violence Through Effective Messaging, much of it will sound familiar.

The first step in Dickinson’s plan is to “commit to a generation-long battle.”  But attempts to control people by limiting their ability to defend themselves has been a part of the American experience at least since the British tried to disarm the Massachusetts Militia at Concord on April 19, 1775. 

Certainly, 143 years after its founding, the NRA still stands tall.  Meanwhile, the National Coalition to Ban Handguns and the National Council to Control Handguns have had to change their names to Coalition to Stop Gun Violence and Brady Campaign, respectively.  They’ve had to stop trying to get handguns banned, and to shift their efforts to “assault weapons.”  They’ve had to start referring to gun control as “gun safety.”  And they’ve had the reins of the gun control movement wrested from them by Michael Bloomberg.

Next in Dickinson’s plan is “Think federally, act locally.”  But anti-gun activist groups have few, if any, grassroots members, and the only activities that bind them are their hatred of guns and their snobbish and often mean-spirited attitude toward gun owners.  By contrast, NRA members at the local level go to shooting ranges for competitions, training and recreation; attend gun shows; go hunting; participate in gun safety classes as students and teachers; attend Friends of the NRA Dinners; and participate in all phases of the political process.

Dickinson’s third and fourth steps are “Politicize disaster, unabashedly” and “Act, don’t dither.”  But both have been standard operating procedure in gun control politics for as long as anyone can remember.  FDR promoted the National Firearms Act with exaggerated claims that “Federal men are constantly facing machine-gun fire in the pursuit of gangsters.”  Bill Clinton tried to justify Sen. Feinstein’s “assault weapon” ban by claiming that police officers were “under a hail of assault weapon attack.”  And in 1989, after a high-profile crime involving a semi-automatic rifle, the San Jose Mercury News editorialized, “Now, while the horror of the Stockton schoolyard massacre still haunts us, Californians must demand of our legislators a law banning assault rifles.”

Twenty-three years later, within days of the awful crimes by a deranged murderer at Sandy Hook Elementary School, in Newtown, Conn., Bloomberg, anti-gun U.S. Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.), the Washington Post, and other gun control advocates demanded that Congress impose new gun control restrictions before any discussions on the subject could take place.

Whether Dickinson’s fifth step, “Bring Big Money to the Table,” is a new idea depends on how you define “big.”  George Soros, the Joyce Foundation, Michael Bloomberg and others have been pouring millions of dollars into gun control efforts for years, not to mention the vast sums of cash that have been funneled to non-governmental organizations that campaigned for the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty.  However, as we have noted, Soros and the Democracy Alliance are now working to funnel much larger sums of money to gun control activist groups and other “progressive” groups in advance of the November elections.  And, as noted by Dickinson, Bloomberg has put $50 million into his “Everytown” gun control campaign.

That brings us to Dickinson’s sixth step, “Think bigger than mayors, moms and martyrs.”  The idea here is that anti-gun groups should work better together.  But as a Bloomberg.com article explained last year, there’s a lot of in-fighting going on between the various anti-gun groups, particularly over who should be in charge, a question that for the time being seems to have been answered by Bloomberg’s bottomless pocketbook.

Dickinson closes by recommending that gun control supporters “prepare for setbacks and paybacks,” meaning legislative defeats and the ousting of anti-gun politicians at the polls.  To that, we can only say, if gun owners do our job on Election Day, Dickinson’s last piece of advice to the anti-gunners is the one to which they probably should pay the most heed.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in Rolling Stone, the magazine’s apparent gun expert, Kristen Gwynne, identifies “The 5 Most Dangerous Guns in America”: pistols, revolvers, derringers, rifles and shotguns (please see related story).  If Gwynne had remembered zip guns and pen guns, she could have expanded her list to “7,” like Dickinson’s.  How clever THAT would have been!

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Washington: NRA Files Legal Challenge Against Misleading Ballot Title for Gun Control Initiative

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Washington: NRA Files Legal Challenge Against Misleading Ballot Title for Gun Control Initiative

Yesterday, NRA filed a legal challenge in the Thurston County Superior Court objecting to the misleading and inadequate ballot title for Initiative 1639, which seeks to further restrict the Second Amendment rights of Washington's law-abiding citizens.  The Thurston ...

Hard Times for Dick's as Second Amendment Supporters Respond to Company’s Anti-Gun Bent

Hunting  

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Hard Times for Dick's as Second Amendment Supporters Respond to Company’s Anti-Gun Bent

We have recently been reporting on the bizarre anti-gun activism of one of the nation’s larger firearm retailers, Dick’s Sporting Goods and its affiliated Field & Stream stores. First, the company announced it would stop selling most centerfire semi-automatic ...

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

ALERT! Can't Wait for Your YETI Cover Up Stickers?

Approximately 100,000 free stickers, proudly displaying the message "I STAND WITH THE NRA FOUNDATION," were distributed at the NRA Annual Meeting in Dallas, Texas last week.  These stickers were designed to cover up the YETI ...

Sorry, Alyssa, But We're Glad We Came

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Sorry, Alyssa, But We're Glad We Came

You likely recall we mentioned a new anti-gun organization recently formed, which was billed as the brainchild of actress Alyssa Milano.  You may also recall that we reported her group, NoRA, had made the vaguely threatening proclamation, ...

Anti-Gun Democrat Proposes Banning Semi-Autos and Going After "Resisters"

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Anti-Gun Democrat Proposes Banning Semi-Autos and Going After "Resisters"

The headline of the USA Today op-ed said it all. Anti-gun Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) last week advocated for legislation to ban an as-yet undetermined class of semi-automatic firearms and to “go after resisters” who refuse to relinquish their ...

Oregon: NRA Files Comments Against Initiative to Restrict Your Right to Self-Defense

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Oregon: NRA Files Comments Against Initiative to Restrict Your Right to Self-Defense

On May 15th, NRA filed comments with the Oregon Secretary of State opposing the proposed ballot title for Initiative Petition 44, which seeks to restrict the self-defense rights of Oregon’s law abiding citizens.  The state Attorney ...

Illinois: Senate Passes Another Bill to Shut Down Your Gun Store Despite Veto of Previous Two

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Illinois: Senate Passes Another Bill to Shut Down Your Gun Store Despite Veto of Previous Two

Today, the Illinois state Senate voted 35-18 to pass Senate Amendment 3 to Senate Bill 337, which would shut down your local gun stores with onerous red tape and regulations.  Governor Bruce Rauner has previously vetoed two ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

News  

Friday, April 27, 2018

NRA Statement on Yeti

The National Rifle Association released the following statement from in response to Yeti’s inaccurate statements:

Swiss Gun Rights Supporters Refuse to Capitulate to International Gun Controllers

News  

Friday, May 11, 2018

Swiss Gun Rights Supporters Refuse to Capitulate to International Gun Controllers

As NRA-ILA reported on April 27, peaceful Switzerland is in the crosshairs of international and domestic gun control advocates who are intent on abolishing the idyllic nation’s tradition of an armed citizenry. Using the 2017 changes to ...

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.