Why One NRA Member is Reconsidering His Membership

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Former Montana Secretary of State and State Senate president Bob Brown owns 20 guns. 

His enthusiasm for firearms is more than a private hobby.  As state legislator, was he was honored with a commendation from the NRA for his support of gun rights.

"The trouble," he argues in an opinion piece in the Sydney Herald, "is the modern NRA, like other time-honored institutions, has become hijacked and radicalized."

He tells The Takeaway how the NRA has changed, what he believes the fight ahead over gun control legislation, and why he’s considering leaving the organization.


Bob Brown

Produced by:

Mythili Rao

Comments [11]



Jan. 10 2013 10:50 PM
John T from Illinois

So Bob Brown is thinking of leaving the NRA? That's OK, The NRA is a volunteer organization, you ask to join and you decide to quit. I wish Mr. Brown well. I am a life member and I believe in the work the organization does.

Jan. 10 2013 06:01 PM
John from SC

I have been a NRA member for over 40 years. Do I agree with everything they do . No. But if we throw the so called assault firearms under the bus,whats next? Your Remington 760? Why, because a five round mag is standard but a larger one is available and how fast can it be fired? Maybe your scoped bolt action rifles ( good sniper weapons) just look at the UK and the land down under. How many pistols hold more then 10 rounds? If they have their way all will be gone. It starts one at a time. But the NRA does stand up for our rights and I will always support them.

Jan. 10 2013 05:28 PM
Concerned Parent from USA

I am a legal gun owner who submitted to background checks, completed the appropriate training, and take gun ownership seriously. As law-abiding citizens we are expected to navigate the labyrinth of conflicting state laws regarding firearms and we do successfully everyday. Although many of these laws are conflicting between neighboring states, we still respect them and abide by them everyday.

With 300 million firearms in private hands (one-third of them pistols), the overwhelming majority of gun owners ARE responsible, law-abiding citizens, which is why horrific massacres are not commonplace, but rather terrible outliers that can never be legislated away (e.g. DC, Chicago, and “Gun Free Zones”).

For several examples for the recent use of firearms for defensive purposes not typically reported by the national media please visit: http://www.equalforce.net and forward this site to others to whom this information may be useful. @forceequalizer

Jan. 02 2013 05:08 PM

Militia 10 US Code §311
"(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able bodied males at least 17 years…and under 45 years of age who are…citizens….
(b) The classes of the militia are-…
(c) ...the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or Naval Militia."

Jan. 01 2013 04:30 PM

RUCB's point seems to argue:
for arming citizens with bigger weapons, that can shoot down drones and penetrate tanks;
Not for limiting magazine size.

Jan. 01 2013 04:22 PM

RUCB wrote: "No group of armed citizens could stand against the might of the American military."
Somalis, Afghans, Iraqis, VC, have all effectively resisted US high-tech weapons with small arms.
There are over 85 million armed Americans.
There may still be some in the US Army unwilling to kill fellow Americans for the purpose of imposing tyranny.
The outcome of a revolution is not a forgone conclusion, and that helps limit the outrageous acts of potential tyrants.
But if they first succeed in disarming those Americans...

Jan. 01 2013 04:16 PM
RUCB_Alum from Central New Jersey

I believe that your guest, Bob Brown, misinterprets the 'original intent' argument for the Second Amendment. I believe the amendment was intended to ensure that collective citizen groups - aka 'militias' - would be empowered by the individual right to keep and bear arms. Mr. Brown's argument - that the amendment was intended to protect citizens from a government run wild - which is in itself too close to Sharon Angle's "second amendment remedies" dreck - doesn't hold water in the modern world. No group of armed citizens could stand against the might of the American military. Small arms can't answer against drones, tanks, artillery and helicopter gunships. So the only mode of protection from an abusive government that a firearm provides is the right to be an assassin. No thanks. I prefer to keep my democracy non-violent.

The Second Amendment needs to be amended so that only citizens who have passed a gun safety course have the right to 'keep and bear' arms. Gun owners get their weapons but the rest of us are protected from their misuse. At its core, the Newtown incident was a case of a gun owner not properly storing and controlling her personal arsenal.

Now what to do about all those illegal weapons? Do you think Congress could limit import and manufacture to 'on demand'?

Jan. 01 2013 03:26 PM
James from Pa

Ralph from ct: The problem with "Promote Reasonable Gun Control" is that eventually, you run out of things to ban and control. And soon, you become like the UK, complete and total ban on firearms ownership, three times our violent crime rate and they are now considering legislation to ban/regulate kitchen knives.(Seriously?!?!) You can not legislate morality. If the NRA did not take the stand it does, all guns would be banned. Because you can only tell this flawed methodology fails when it has precisely failed....it looks great, all the way down, until you get their.

Also, you idea about changing the NRA is fail liberal logic. The NRA is powerful in and of itself, they could dissolve tomorrow and sell off all their assets. It would not change a thing. What makes the NRA so powerful is their members and their beliefs. Without their votes, they would have no power.

One last consideration to your plan, as a new member of the NRA, you will see in their history, they have compromised many times, in the past, even aided in the construction of the national instant check system. The three or four remaining gun rights organizations out their (Where people were to go if the NRA dissolved) are seriously radical and take no compromises of any kind. In 1994, there was a huge exodus of NRA members, in the millions, and they formed these groups. LOL...your chasing the wrong chicken sir...

Jan. 01 2013 02:20 PM
Kay Merkel Boruff from Dallas

John, do you think people who legally buy & register semi-automatic assault weapons with large clip cartridge should be allowed to shoot these guns for sport? Many people believe that it is fun to shoot these guns on a gun range.

I assume, in the future, you will have someone with a different opinion from Bob Brown.

Jan. 01 2013 12:20 PM
Ralph from ct

Why I joined the NRA
The events of the May 15, 2012 in Newtown Connecticut have had a
chilling effect on the entire country. We have all seen the effects
of this kind of violence too many times. I believe we need to change
the conversation about guns to encourage national policies that
protect us all.

With the above said why would I join the NRA? The answer is simple-
to be part of the conversation of guns in our society.

The NRA has some valuable beliefs at their core. They want to “Defend
our Second Amendment Rights”, which is a very admirable goal. I’m
sure many NRA members agree that defending our rights should not be at
the expense of protecting our children.

The NRA also provides education and training on gun safety -another
admirable goal that I would like to see expanded. If there was more
safety training there might be fewer tragedies.

So, how do I hope to change the conversation at the NRA to balance
these ideas?

The answer lies in simple arithmetic. There are approximately 4.3
million members of the NRA who value their rights. There are many
times that many parents in the United States who want to protect
their children. If a small percentage of these parents joined the
NRA, they could change the conversation within the NRA. They could:

• Promote Reasonable Gun Control
• Change the organization from being a political organization to
being an organization that works in the interest of all to promote
• Change the Board of Directors at the NRA to be more
understanding about their new constituent's beliefs
--------------------------------------------------------------------------- ----
I joined the NRA online at https://membership.nrahq.org/forms/signup.asp?campaignid=XR021747
for a discounted membership of $25.
After joining, one of the first things I did was send the above
statement to members...@nrahq.org
I hope many of you will:
1) Join the NRA
2) Voice your opinions on the subject (If you agree with the
statement above, send it to members@nrahq.org with the subject “Why
I Joined the NRA”)
3)Vote(by proxy) your opinions at the next NRA National
Convention in May.
If you do not want to give $25 to the NRA (which I understand) you
could do the following:
1) Voice your opinions on the subject (If you agree with the note
above, send it to members@nrahq.org with the subject “Why I’m
Considering Joining the NRA”)

Jan. 01 2013 09:12 AM

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