Gun Organization Candidate Questionnaires: Be Sure To Answer RIGHT!

NRA

 

A friend of mine is running for state representative. He gets a ton of questionnaires, including the two referenced in this submission. That would include the National Rifle Association of America and the Palmetto Gun Rights (PGR) and The National Association for Gun Rights questionnaire combo by co-joined gun interest groups, one headquartered in Windsor, Colorado. The second of the co-joined organizations has a PAC and a legal arm for lawsuits. A recent suit successfully sued for the right of postal workers to carry guns on facility parking lots, but not inside the actual Post Office. So, don’t tap any bumpers outside your local Post Office.

If you’ve never seen one of these questionnaires, here are some highlights. Let’s begin with the NRA “Political Victory Fund” tailored to specific states. It’s a cover page followed by 5 additional pages of mostly push-poll multiple-choice Q and A’s. In other words, by phrasing the choices in a certain way, the NRA is directing candidates to the answer sought. ‘

If you don’t return the questionnaire, you will be assigned the dreaded “?” rating. That’s tantamount to being interpreted by NRA membership as indifference, if not outright hostility, toward Second Amendment-related issues, according to the cover letter. In states where guns are carried and cuddled every waking moment, the “?” renders you a non-person at the polling place.

The NRA questionnaire is fraught with push-pull questions and propagandized words. Here’s an example: “Considering current South Carolina state firearm laws, would you support any additional restrictive state legislation regulating the sale, use, or possession of firearms or ammunition?” The key word is “restrictive.” Candidates will realize that response ‘e’ is the only answer that keeps them in the game: “No, current state firearm laws should be “improved” to benefit law-abiding (until blasting another drunk in a gin mill) gun owners and sportsmen in South Carolina.”

The whole questionnaire is a transparent setup that, in gun states, both Republicans AND Democrats answer for their A plus rating. That not only supposedly gets you votes, it adds to your campaign’s bottom line. Before visiting the essentially nonsensical, almost funny, PGR effort, let’s peek at the twisting of stats and facts by the NRA. The organization wants to do away with safety and trigger locks. “A lock severely limits the ability to use a firearm for self-defense purposes and potentially increases the risk of a firearm accident.”

Assorted studies ranging from Academia to the New England Journal of Medicine have all put the likelihood of being shot between 4 and 5 times greater for those possessing a firearm. And the idea that a safety or trigger lock increases the risk of a firearm accident is so absurd on its face that it defies all reason. In fact, the General Accounting Office estimates that one-third of accidental deaths could be eliminated with safety locks in place. Additional studies found an increase in suicides in homes where guns are openly stored and/or unlocked. A site called MinnPost points to a Policy Statement by the American Academy of Pediatricians urging parents to remove all guns from the home.

The NRA self-serving blarney isn’t just a couple of little fibs; it’s a collection of outright dangerous lies and there are other intentional distortions throughout the questionnaire. Bottom line, cowardly politicians are keeping the NRA killing fields populated with tens of thousands of American corpses annually.

Still, if you want to get free ALEC vacations and big gun money, you do as you’re told. And, believe me, you’re insidiously told how to answer NRA questions.

The other questionnaire is even more arbitrary and just this side of a straightjacket. If you fail to answer a question, it will be automatically graded as an anti-gun response. These are the extremists of the gun culture. Their questionnaire includes a pledge that you’ll introduce at least one piece of pro-gun legislation per year. You’re also expected to co-sponsor “a gun in every pot” legislation. Furthermore, you’ll only endorse and support pro-gun candidates in primary and general elections regardless of the “whims” of the party leadership. Questions touch on the wackadoo “Constitutional Carry” and nullification issues.

PGR goes NRA one better in actually beginning the questionnaire by what it calls a “background briefing.” The briefing tells the candidate the exact answer they want to subsequent questions. This outfit wants no restrictions, no regulations, no permits for gun sales by any Tom, Dick and Harry with a 9MM to spare. At its core, the questionnaire is intimidating and wildly irrelevant with the answers already provided.

Clint Eastwoods, you can keep your guns. Go ahead and make everybody’s day and chat with a chair while you’re at it. The feds can no more relieve you of your 310 million pieces of precious iron than they can ship back 11 or 12 million Mexican immigrants. Just be a little more flexible about safety issues. Do something useful like reading the legitimate studies that have found no protective competent for possessing a firearm, and numerous huge negatives such as accidentally killing your three-year-old.

A final word to wives, mothers and girlfriends — please vote for reasonable candidates. They’ll mostly be female and fearless. Sarah Brady has been working for decades to insert some common sense into the gun debate. She’s 72 now and for the last 32 of those years has loved and supported a husband who was shot in the head during the assassination attempt of President Ronald Reagan. She has also worked for sensible gun laws.

I’m sure she’s still a Republican, like her husband, James, the former White House Press Secretary for Reagan. She worked for two Republican representatives, the National Republican Congressional Committee and the Republican National Committee. So it’s OK to be Republican and still support reasonable gun legislation.

Another long-time advocate for such legislation is Carolyn McCarthy. Like Sarah Brady, she has seen the consequences of gun violence. Her husband was killed, and her son severely injured by the Long Island Railroad shooter, Colin Ferguson, who opened fire on and in the train and killed 6 people in December of 1993. Three years later, Mrs. McCarthy was elected as a New York Democrat to the House of Representatives. She’s two years younger than Brady and, like Sarah, unable to make much progress in her gun efforts.

Our only hope is women’s votes and those of a few enlightened men. Reverse the notion of every venue being open to gun-toters. Guns are fine for hunting, target shooting and collecting. But guns don’t belong in churches or schools or on college campuses or in bars or government buildings or, frankly, any public places. Countries with few guns have few homicides.

That should tell even Tea Party members something. By the way, the candidate, a gun owner, didn’t return either questionnaire.

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32 Replies to “Gun Organization Candidate Questionnaires: Be Sure To Answer RIGHT!”

  1. I would take the form to the shooting range then mil bck to them the remains to get the endorsement, then once elected vote for every gun safety bill that comes up for a vote. Then run on my record whil denouncing the NRA.

  2. Those push-pull questions are scary. I did a phone poll recently where the question was about the ACA, and phrased so that no matter what I answered, I didn’t agree with the answer. Then there was the one that asked me if I thought the worst problem with Obama was his lawlessness, his inability to work with Congress, or his mishandling of Benghazi. I told her ‘none of the above. They are all made up issues to fire up the GOP base.’ She promptly hung up.

  3. Actually, what the dextropterarchs are doing is arming and inciting enough Brown Shi(r)ts so that one day they won’t even have to worry about elections.

  4. Oh! Wen I taught marketing in bus school, I used to tell my students, when designing a questionnaire, to be sure to include “None of the Above”, and leave open space for the respondent’s comments.

    So, when I get questionnaires like this, I tell’m what they want to hear. In doing this, I’m consciously biasing their results. Then, when the election comes around, I vote against these people.

    It helps to produce what I now call “the Karl Rove Effect”, where the pollster has no idea what the true position of the electorate is.

  5. First of all I’m very pro-gun. That being said, I think that there are too many laws that are on the books in regards to the sale of guns. Why can’t we just enforce the ones we have now? There has not been any shooting (other than self defense) that was done by an NRA member, and the NRA also wanted everyone to be armed, including blacks. I don’t understand why the NRA is blamed for all of this violence, then it’s the person who’s holding the gun that is at fault. Does Ford, Chevy, Dodge, BMW, Mercedes get blamed when someone is involved in a hit and run, DUI, etc? No, because it’s stupid. I will say that I think that mental health should be allowed to be viewed by those who look at criminal history when purchasing a firearm, but nothing permanent and is up for review at anytime. Both the CO shootings, Sandy Hook, VT, all done by someone who had major mental issues. Don’t blame the law abiding citizens for social degradation.

  6. to base your existence as an American on a gun or gun ownership is to be no different than the Islamic hordes who went through Asia and destroyed most cultures there. It is a mentality that says about you, that you have no idea what being an American is. Indeed, to be what a responsible citizen of the world is.
    the push for people to own guns is nothing more than the opportunity for a relatively few amount of people to be very rich. The people whose mentality is not capable of existing past a gun to become and remain very wealthy. All at the expense of the thousands who die every year, and the even greater number of people who are injured every year.

  7. 30,000 people killed annually. 73,000 people injured annually due to guns. The NRA pushes that. they NRA does not want any rules about who can own weapons. They strive to achieve an open society where everyone can freely own guns. That is the biggest lump of stupidity that can happen in any society. the more people who own guns, the more guns need to be owned to protect yourself. Is that the type of society that you want to live in?
    The NRA must be a tiny organization of no one ever kills anyone who belongs to it.

  8. Our Blind Spot About Guns

    If we had the same auto fatality rate today that we had in 1921, by my calculations we would have 715,000 Americans dying annually in vehicle accidents.

    Instead, we’ve reduced the fatality rate by more than 95 percent — not by confiscating cars, but by regulating them and their drivers sensibly.

    We could have said, “Cars don’t kill people. People kill people,” and there would have been an element of truth to that. Many accidents are a result of alcohol consumption, speeding, road rage or driver distraction. Or we could have said, “It’s pointless because even if you regulate cars, then people will just run each other down with bicycles,” and that, too, would have been partly true.
    Read More
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/31/opinion/nicholas-kristof-our-blind-spot-about-guns.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=c-column-top-span-region%C2%AEion=c-column-top-span-region&WT.nav=c-column-top-span-region

  9. “Ask the wrong question; get the wrong answer” is a common problem in our modern world. It applies to DennisS as much or more than it does to the “National Rifle Association of America”.

  10. Lee..Face/Palm..sigh..I know just where your car analogy is going and it’s totally ridiculous. Lee, when you can stick a full size operating motor vehicle in your pocket and then pull it out and kill someone and put it back in your pocket or holster THEN.. and ONLY Then will your stupid comparison will hold water. Look no matter what you gun nuts say or do you will always be wrong. You are defending some thing that cannot be defended logically. Your demi god Wayne LaPiere is always so keen to say The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. But Lee here’s the REAL question that YOU and other GUN NUTS avoid and are to COWARDLY to answer or even think about..What if..WHAT IF!? the Bad Guys COULD NOT GET GUNS!???. And don’t even try to give me that line of complete paranoid bullshit about Your guns being taken away also or That Gun Control violates YOUR 2nd Amend rights! That IDIOTIC Paranoid bullshit. Grow a pair!!!Better yet grow some brain cells!!

  11. And here is some more reality for you Lee, The automotive and transportation industry is very heavily regulated, all industries are regulated EXCEPT!!! EXCEPT your precious gun industry! A firearm manufacture even bitched about their bi-annual fire safety inspection claiming it “violated their 2nd amend. rights”…But ONLY after Obama became president.

  12. “30,000 people killed annually.”

    18,000 are suicides. Another 1000 are shot by police. Another 500 are justifiable. There are 500 accidents. That means less than 10,000 people are murdered by people using guns or 0.003% of our population. There are 90,000,000 gun owners in the US. Your whining is statistically irrelevant.

    “The NRA pushes that. they NRA does not want any rules about who can own weapons. They strive to achieve an open society where everyone can freely own guns.”

    And? If someone cannot be trusted with a gun, they shouldn’t be free to walk amoung the rest of us.

    “Is that the type of society that you want to live in?”

    I want to live in a society where the government does not have a monopoly on force.

    “The NRA must be a tiny organization of no one ever kills anyone who belongs to it.”

    The NRA is 5,000,000 members. 5,000,000 gub nuts that cannot be controlled by the democrat party.

  13. If I were a candidate who got one of these, I would answer in the ways I knew would earn me that D rating from the NRA, then get ahead of it and use it as a point of pride in my accomplishments on the campaign trail…”Yep! The NRA hates me! Wayne LaPierre thinks I will try to make guns harder for someone ill-equipped to be responsible to obtain and use. And…?”

  14. I find this sentence, “If someone cannot be trusted with a gun, they shouldn’t be free to walk amoung the rest of us”, to be totally hilarious.

    Really? You mean a guy that was cleaning his gun and it went off missing my 1 1/2 year old daughter’s head by less than a foot? This guy was trusted with a gun and was free to walk among us. He was in the U.S. Army. He was my babysitter’s husband. They laughed, thinking how silly it was that he forgot to empty the chamber. She was fired on the spot.

  15. Here’s an answer to your “REAL question”. We answer it often, you just don’t like the answer: We’re not so naive to believe that “bad guys” magically won’t get guns outside of the law. They do and they will.

    The only way to truly make it harder for “bad guys” to get guns is to assume all people are potential “bad guys” and deny everyone guns. Even in that case, “bad guys” will still get them sometimes. Oh, and that kind of policy would pretty much definitely result in “guns being taken away” and laws that “violates [OUR] 2nd Amend rights”. Not so paranoid when that’s the only thing that could significantly reduce guns available to “bad guys”.

    You can’t have it both ways. Do you want to violate the 2A or have some “bad guys” with guns?

    If gun controllers and those enforcing the gun control laws actually used them to actually target criminal activity, you’d get no resistance. However, many of the existing and proposed laws are often used to harass…

  16. Trey you just proved all my points to be accurate. But the biggest thing you proved is that the gun nuts and powder heads cannot and never will win this debate. Your alleged logic is self defeating, you are trying to put a positive spin on something that can never be seen as positive. What it boils down to is that we have gun violence BECAUSE WE HAVE GUNS!!!! NO GUNS!!! NO GUN VIOLENCE! Surely your small mind can grasp that simple LOGICAL FACT!! Talking to you gun nuts is like talking to an insane person.

  17. Wow Pat that was a close one! Glad your daughters ok. But you know these gun nuts would probably blame it on your child by claiming she shouldn’t have had her head in that particular spot at that particular time. They always have an excuse and they never hold water. I would have slapped those asswipes silly for laughing about it.

  18. While the NRA may have started out as a grass roots organization, it can no longer claim that it is merely protecting gun owner’s right to bear arms.

    The manufacturers depend on the the flaming rhetoric of the NRA leadership to sell guns and the NRA depends on contributions from the gun manufacturers.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/gun-industry-funds-nra-2013-1

    http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2012/12/whom-does-the-nra-really-speak-for/266373/

    Not only that, but different arms of the NRA can claim tax exemptions, 501(c)3 and 501(c)4 due to the various “charities” to which it donates money and their “educational” classes such as those given to the Boy Scouts, teaching gun safety, shooting lessons, etc. These organization, under the NRA umbrella, pay no taxes on the money they receive. Which means that you, the taxpayer, are helping to support the NRA.

    I am not against gun ownership, but I also want strict gun control.

  19. Good diversion djchefron. Not good enough though:

    Militia Act of 1903 organized the militia into two groups: the Reserve Militia, which included ALL able-bodied men between ages 17 and 45, and the Organized Militia, which included state militia (National Guard) units receiving federal support.

    Therefore I am part of the Reserve Militia (as are you) and I am “well regulated” in the way that phrase was defined at the time of 2A in that I am equipped, prepared, and trained. I am prepared to defend you and even people like Joseph P. Uhl despite the fact that he’d prefer to call me “gun nut”, “powder head”, “small mind[ed]”, and “insane”.

  20. Damn I didn’t know the Constitution which was written by people real Americans revere was written in 1903. How about bring back Plessey which separate was equal. Oh I forgot we were 3/5ths human back then. I see your point

  21. Bullshit. You have no one to defend us against. You are just another “fake patriot” looking for a reason to own guns.

  22. Joseph P. Uhl,

    Where did I put a positive spin on gun violence? I didn’t. You’re the one that refuses to put anything but a negative spin on guns themselves and ALL people that own them as evidenced by your incessant name calling.

    Even studies commissioned by the President after the Sandy Hook tragedy showed defensive gun uses were at least and likely far more common than criminal uses. The report was immediately buried because it put that “positive spin” you think can’t possibly exist.

    You’re once again proving that you want “NO GUNS” while claiming we’re paranoid for claiming you want “[our] guns being taken away”.

    “NO [BLANK]!!! NO [BLANK] VIOLENCE!” is EXTREMELY simplified logic that you seem to only want to apply to BLANK = GUN. We’d rather see actual violence combated which means we don’t have to worry about whatever the BLANK is.

  23. Here’s the side-effects of gun control laws that people like you want to call common sense:

    Look up Brian Aitken. New Jersey has a few narrow exceptions to transporting firearms that includes moving. However, despite this exception (and even the fact that he had his guns unloaded, locked, and buried under personal items due to the move), he was convicted of a felony anyway. Clearly he should now be treated like a criminal for life!

    Shaneen Allen, a single mother from Pennsylvania with proper training and a carry licence (she obtained after being robbed twice) was recently arrested in New Jersey on felony charge for illegal possession of a firearm because her permit was not honored in New Jersey when her gun was found in her car. What good is it for society to strip her away from her children, bankrupt her in court costs (not even to mention the tax payer dollars being spent), and possibly (if convicted) jail her for at least 3 years, and punish her for life as a felon?

  24. Shiva,

    You are just another person afraid of guns that feels it’s OK to limit the rights of others simply because you don’t like something they own.

  25. Stop being stupid. A lot of us grew up with firearms. Hell a lot of us went to the military to learn how to use them. You think your asinine position that everyone regardless of their mental capacity to own guns is the rule? You are a idiot and be gone

  26. Ah … I’m stupid now. How may more things do you want to call those that disagree with you?

    When did I say everyone “regardless of their mental capacity” should be be able to own guns? Putting words in my mouth in an attempt to make me out as the bad guy is dishonest.

    The gun controllers already use manipulative language, exaggerations, and sometimes even lies to scare people into fearing guns and anyone that chooses to own them. Feel free to join them in their lies by claiming I said something I did not. Your just further proving that all your entire position is built on a dishonest foundation.

  27. Trey your rants are as usual non substantive. And no I don’t believe you would defend me because Trey YOU would be between MY rifle site because you do belong to a militia because as any thinking person knows militias are not for defending this nation and ONLY for wiping out the Democrats, Liberals, Blacks, Hispanics, Catholics, Jews, Middle Eastern people, Asians, need I go on? These “Militia’s are only for purging and nothing more,AND because thumb dicked mossy oaked gun-totin weekend warrior morons need to pull out their proxy penises and play with them with the other BOYS and hose down the woods with testosterone.All while claiming Patriotism is their’s alone and only guns make you a patriot.

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