Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Doctors, guns, and the NRA

On making a visit to a cardiologist, a patient recently was asked of fill out a history which included the questions shown in this image.

None of those questions are any business of a cardiologist, let alone questions 11 and 12.

Now, if the doctor is also a volunteer fireman, he/she might be qualified to ask about #8 -- when serving in that capacity. Likewise, if he/she is also an NRA-certified firearms safety instructor, he/she might be qualified to ask about #11 and #12 -- when serving in that capacity.

When I'm paying him/her to be a cardiologist, he/she had better stick to what he/she is being paid to do and what he/she is qualified to do.

One observer -- apparently hostile to the NRA (National Rifle Association) -- claimed that "The NRA would tell you to answer honestly to all questions on the survey. They're into you disclosing all kinds of personal information on the 4473s and the NICS. The NRA designed both. So, what does that tell you about the NRA and questionnaires?"

I wonder if that observer has ever wondered why the NRA had its hand in 4473s, NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System), and all other gun-control legislation? Because:

1 - It'd be far worse without NRA influence.
2 - The NRA has little power beyond compromising with the enemy.

I agree that the NRA has made too-frequent regrettable mistakes such as supporting anti-liberty politicians and compromising on anti-gun legislation and regulation. But, at only 5 million members, that's all it can do. Although it is the most hated lobbying organization on Capitol Hill, the NRA is overwhelmingly outnumbered by the membership numbers of anti-gun organizations such AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics), AARP (American Association of Retired Persons), AMA (American Medical Association), NEA (National Education Association) and other labor unions, etc. It's outfunded by the likes of George Soros, Michael Bloomberg, and the Joyce Foundation. The reality is that the number of voters a lobbyist represents and the money they bring is what matters to most politicians -- not what's right or what the Constitution says.

Now, if we could increase NRA membership to a mere 25% of the estimated 80-100 million gun owners, the NRA would have the clout to dictate the law -- not compromise and try to mitigate the law. Imagine the clout the NRA would have if 100% of gun owners were members! (One might prefer to support JPFO (Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership), GOA (Gun Owners of America), Firearms Coalition, or CCRKBA (Citizens' Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms) over the NRA, but the size of those organizations is insignificant by comparison. The NRA is the closest to a big dog in the gun-rights fight and the only one has any clout at all in DC.)

As for the ugly things the NRA does (as mentioned above), if one isn't a member, he/she has no say. On the other hand, members get a vote on who will be in NRA leadership positions. That drives the NRA's agenda. When a member writes to NRA leaders and mentions his/her membership status, they pay attention. (Note that the NRA stopped its support for Harry Reid after input from members -- not the complaints of anti-NRA outsiders.)

Everyone who owns one or more arms or who appreciated the right to own arms should be a member of the NRA. Everyone who isn't a member is only one of approximately 95-million gun owners riding in the wagon while five million pull.

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