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View Full Version : Which organizations should I join? to help the 2nd Amendment.


mcubed4130
04-06-2007, 7:47 PM
wow... You guys are quite an amazing read.

And now all I can wonder is... Have I been sending my money to the right places? or not enough places?

So simple question:

Which organizations should I join (or donate to, etc)? to help the 2nd Amendment.

Thanks!

-M3

bwiese
04-06-2007, 7:59 PM
And now all I can wonder is... Have I been sending my money to the right places? or not enough places?

So simple question:

Which organizations should I join (or donate to, etc)? to help the 2nd Amendment.

M3,

The NRA is the nation's #1 gun organzation - as opposed to the several "letterhead organizations" with onlt 3-4 staffers that continually need to stir the pot to generate income.

In the last couple of years, the new California NRA leadership, with their Members Council oversight, has been very active in stopping - on a legal as well as political basis - bad gun law. People are out of jail because of their assistance.

Recent actions certainly give the appearance that another supposedly pro-gun organization, the CRPA, is not entirely progun, as they have taken several positions in the past (supported SB15 'unsafe handgun' laws, Torrico mail-order ammo ban). CRPA can at best be regarded as only pro-retail with an occasional pro-gun theme, and at worst antigun due to their naive (or worse) support of laws that can readily be expanded. (Look what the unsafe handgun laws morphed into these days - mag discos, loaded chamber indicators, etc.)

Since the Brady types are moving on to ammunition control, we have to be unified and not let organizations like CRPA let the proverbial camel's nose into the tent.

Join the NRA: if you're already a member, help out their ILA (Inst. for Legislative Action) and their PVF (Political Victory Fund). And join your local Member's Council!

jumbopanda
04-06-2007, 8:13 PM
It's best to just join the NRA, rather than smaller organizations which can divert resources.

xenophobe
04-06-2007, 8:17 PM
Donating to the NRA-ILA directly is the best thing you can do. Becoming a member is the second best thing.

Staying alert of all firearms related legislation and making calls and sending letters, faxes and emails is important as well.

CALI-gula
04-06-2007, 8:25 PM
So simple question:

Which organizations should I join (or donate to, etc)? to help the 2nd Amendment.

Thanks! -M3

The California State Assembly, or the California State Senate.

A donation to either won't help us - you MUST join!

.

mcubed4130
04-06-2007, 9:18 PM
The California State Assembly, or the California State Senate.

A donation to either won't help us - you MUST join!

.

Hehe... I have noted that... 24th district assembly and 11th district senate, tend to get fax's from me, grumbling at them on a regular basis... :) But then again, I'm one of the few people I know - who has every local, state, and federal representative on my bookmarks list.

So short of running for state assembly or state senate. I guess my new join of CRPA is questionable - I'll have to keep an eye on them. And my lifetime membership with NRA, and daily alerts from NRA-ILA are a good thing. (guess it's time to upgrade the wife to lifetime too).

One thing you guys have me confused about was the "CA NRA vs. the national NRA". Are they different?

A local guy I was chatting with at a gunshop implied that CRPA was more the CA specific NRA... which is why a couple months ago I joined CRPA - opps... should spent more time here first!

Anyway, I've been greatly enjoying Calguns - unless something happens on this forum, I guess my next donation will be to get a Calguns stamped OLL. :) If I can't stop the useful idiots, at least I can annoy them.

Thanks to all for the great work, and the excellent information. Please let me know if I can be of any help.

-M3

M. Sage
04-06-2007, 9:40 PM
I'm waiting for Mike Haas to stumble across this one.

There are local Memebers' Councils for the NRA:

http://nramemberscouncils.com/

That sounds a bit more like what you want.

Creeping Incrementalism
04-06-2007, 11:21 PM
Recent actions certainly give the appearance that another supposedly pro-gun organization, the CRPA, is not entirely progun, as they have taken several positions in the past (supported SB15 'unsafe handgun' laws, Torrico mail-order ammo ban). CRPA can at best be regarded as only pro-retail with an occasional pro-gun theme, and at worst antigun due to their naive (or worse) support of laws that can readily be expanded. (Look what the unsafe handgun laws morphed into these days - mag discos, loaded chamber indicators, etc.)

I decided not to renew my membership with CRPA because of their supporting the actual orderer having to be present to receive mail order ammo, and sent them a letter telling them why. The resposne I got was personally signed (with a pen) by James Erdman, Executive Director, and mentioned they specifically took note of my opinion on home delivery of ammunition. So hopefully next time they will be more intelligent and steadfast on RKBA. But until I see more backbone from them for a couple years straight, I won't rejoin.

In addition to the NRA, I support some of what Bill Weise calls "letterhead organizations". I feel I get a lot of bang for my buck (so to speak) with them, provide another perspective sometimes, and they help keep things competitive in the gun-rights arena. But NRA is definitely #1.

hoffmang
04-06-2007, 11:26 PM
Avoid CPRA.

Join NRA, give to NRA-ILA, and join your local NRA member's council.

Otherwise, hang out on here and donate if/when its needed. Consider a small donation to Kestryll from time to time to cover operating expenses of Calguns.net.

That's about the best strategy to help effect change.

-Gene

peepshowal
04-07-2007, 12:58 AM
The California State Assembly, or the California State Senate.

A donation to either won't help us - you MUST join!

.

Hey CALI, when are you going to run? I'd vote for you.

veeklog
04-07-2007, 9:09 AM
+1 for the NRA. That is where all my money goes to. Last year I wa going to join the CPRA, but I heard a lot of negative things about them and was told to avoid them. So I sent more money to the NRA.

otteray
04-07-2007, 11:13 AM
As an NRA and CRPA member, I'd like to see some more specific examples of how the CRPA is not totally pro 2nd Amendment.

bwiese
04-07-2007, 11:44 AM
As an NRA and CRPA member, I'd like to see some more specific examples of how the CRPA is not totally pro 2nd Amendment.

The two biggest ones:

(1) CRPA's Lynch and Upholt were running around Sacto supporting SB15 several years ago (IIRC, 2000). SB 15 was the initial "unsafe handgun" law, with the "roster of approved handguns", etc. Large sporting goods distributors/dealer chains (CAFR, Calif Assn of Firearms Retailers, whom Lynch & crew also represent) kinda liked it because it made business for smaller competitors more difficult, and guaranteed inentory turn, etc.

NRA did a fairly good job of trying to shut SB15 down, but opposition became fragmented when CRPA started doing above, and then SASS (the single-action cowboy shooters) came on the scene. SASS was fairly new to political scene and certaily very naive, kinda new to Sacto, and thought they'd scored a deal to protect their precious single-action revolvers from the approved list. What really happened is that several "on the fence votes" could not see clear unity on the gunnies' side and thought it would be a safe vote - as it (to them) was not offsensively antigun, because 'gun groups' weren't unified in opposition.

Due to demographics, most gun bills pass or fail in Sacto by only a few votes, so pressure on the fence sitters ('swing votes') helps, and lack of unity by gun-oriented orgs is perceived as, "they don't really care, the left hand says this, the right hand says that..."


(2) Last year, AB2731 (Torrico D-Fremont) floated what was in essence a mail-order ammunition ban. CRPA was actively backing this (though there apparently may have been a last minute reversal when in became known on Calguns - CRPA really tried to public backpedal on it). I have the word of people on the legislative floor in Sacto that CRPA was indeed behind this: their firearms retailer friends would really like to control the ammo market and get it to a "protected" status and not have to worry about importation of discounted bulk mail-order ammo.


CRPA is essentially a letterhead organization, a closed group that's essentially a paid political lobbying firm that poses as pro-gun but sometimes has antigun stances (hey, they gotta bring in cash). It has no elections, no way for its 'membership' to change or prod leadership, etc. Your fees go to a black hole, and you - as a member - appear to primarily be regarded as an 'income supplier'.

Shane916
04-07-2007, 4:59 PM
avatar says it! :D

otteray
04-07-2007, 5:24 PM
Wow.
I'm disappointed to hear this about CRPA., being both a member of the NRA and CRPA.:confused:
At their website, the link to legislative info seems to be from the NRA.
But, anyway, hasn't the NRA made mistakes in the past, as well?
Before renewing my membership for 2008, I will contact CRPA and ask a few questions about your negative statements.
What is your take on GOC (GOA for Calif.)?
Sam Paredes' spoke at our local club here in Santa Cruz County (Scott's Valley Sportsman's Club) last year and I thought that they were very strongly supportive of putting down any anti- type laws.

I have always thought it best to support all gun right advocacy groups, if only to keep pressure on the Brady types to keep them from being the only voice that is heard in the legislature; but not if these groups are in conflict with the big one, the NRA.
I had thought the NRA had pretty much abandoned California, until they stepped in about the San Francisco ban last year, and that the smaller state groups had more effective Sac. lobbyists, while NRA was mainly focused in D.C., as far as Calif. is concerned.

mcubed4130
04-07-2007, 6:09 PM
I had thought the NRA had pretty much abandoned California, until they stepped in about the San Francisco ban last year, and that the smaller state groups had more effective Sac. lobbyists, while NRA was mainly focused in D.C., as far as Calif. is concerned.

I must admit, seeing all the NRA-ILA alerts... about everyone else EXCEPT - California, is one of the primary reasons I asked the question about who I should join and send donation money to...

Why do I feel like I'm part of the French resistance - after the French government already surrendered to the Germans? I guess we'll just keep hoping the United States, will liberate Kalifornia from the communists... :) (Ok, I admit I lifted this 2nd sentence from someone around here, but it does seem like the truth - so for whoever I just copied, please feel my praise - for emulating you)

-M3

bwiese
04-07-2007, 6:33 PM
Gene and I got a firsthand lesson about other CA gun groups' involvement: we were up in Sacramento on Aug 16 last year, at the DOJ comment hearings about proposed regulatory definition changes for 'detachable magazine'.

The NRA and its lawyers were there, fully armed, with a 200+ page presentation including analysis, history, side effects, etc. Calgunners were there with their commentary, fairly detailed as well. The CRPA sent in a one-page pro forma protest letter, with far less detail & substantive comment & analysis than most of the Calgunners'!

Later, heading to lunch, we saw Parades down the street and Kathy Lynch near a bar. They were with 2-3 blocks of the hearing auditorium and were no-shows.

Understand that the other organizations are private lobbying groups that live off a mix of clients' fees + 'membership'. (You'd think if you're a real member, you'd have some voiting rights??)

Other groups on a national basis may not be so perfidious (i.e, taking an antigun position) but they always have to 'stir the pot' to get attention and donations: one way of doing that is to file lots of lawsuits whose cases they can't fully support all the way thru - and where the NRA has to then (regardless of wisdom of filing of case) get entangled just to keep it going and stop it from going sideways.

Three- four guys and a mailing list and a website do not comprise a strong, deep organization.

bwiese
04-07-2007, 6:38 PM
But, anyway, hasn't the NRA made mistakes in the past, as well?

Sure, but these other dudes were ACTUALLY SELLING US DOWN THE RIVER FOR LOBBYING DOLLARS>

Before renewing my membership for 2008, I will contact CRPA and ask a few questions about your negative statements.

There will be either (1) no answer or (2) denial (lying). This info comes to me from folks up in Sacramento who have seen the play by play.

Nothing much will change for CRPA until its 'membership' gets to vote on leadership and positions. Right now, it's Erdman's gig along with Jerry Upholt and Kathy Lynch (from what I hear, his girlfriend) bringing up the tail.



I had thought the NRA had pretty much abandoned California, until they stepped in about the San Francisco ban last year, and that the smaller state groups had more effective Sac. lobbyists, while NRA was mainly focused in D.C., as far as Calif. is concerned.

With newer management in the last several years, CA NRA has been deeply involved. People are out of jail because of them and their lawyers. DOJ has not gotten away with more BS without being called on it.

And sometimes smart politics is not always waving the flag, so one can work behind the scenes. Perhaps they've been too quiet and not touted their work.

otteray
04-07-2007, 6:49 PM
Parades a no show?
He was an excellent gun rights speaker at our club. Almost like a old time preacher's fire and brimstone evangelical sermon. Very knowledgeable guy.
Now,I'm disappointed.
Thanks for the heads up.

Back to the topic regarding what .org to support:
When my late father (a life-long NRA guy) was on his death bed two years ago, one of the last things that he asked me was, "Son, you still belong to the NRA, don't you?"
I cringed and told him that my membership had lapsed for the past two years.
I'll never forget the sad look that came over his face, there as he was dying of old age.
I quickly informed him that I was renewing my membership, and he smiled and nodded his head, looked me in the eye and said, "Good, good."
He was right, the NRA is still our most important advocate, as it had been all his long life.
I'll never let my membership lapse again.

hoffmang
04-07-2007, 7:24 PM
Just seconding Bill's eyewitness reports above.

Also, there were some oddities around a dog tethering bill being traded for some gun issues last year. Bottom line is that CPRA isn't always looking out for the average firearms enthusiast.

-Gene

Dont Tread on Me
04-08-2007, 4:32 AM
I'm only repeating what Bill W. said, but join the NRA and look very hard at the CRPA before joining.

The CRPA supported all the anti gun legislation Bill referenced. Their miss timed "support" for Arnold could have brought a lesser candidate down.

Also look at the constitution of the CRPA. Can you vote on the organizations leadership?

LECTRIKHED
04-08-2007, 10:58 AM
Join the JPFO. Jews for the Preservation of Firearm Ownership. They work a lot with the NRA, and have additional resources.

http://www.jpfo.org/

bwiese
04-08-2007, 11:16 AM
If anything, they're trying to undermine Parker by repealing the DC ban in congress. No real pro gun guy would push for a DC gun-ban repeal until Parker is given a chance to be heard by the SCOTUS.


NRA will NOT moot Parker, and the legislation for DC gun ban repeal is off table - it got tied in with some other unrelated stuff.

NRA's Chris Cox has told folks I trust (and it's now being reported that Wayne called Levy, too) that "NRA will do nothing to endanger or moot Parker."

tman
04-08-2007, 11:44 AM
I'd say support the NRA. They are pretty much the only group big and powerful enough to make changes in our favor.

However, I like the JPFO as well. Of course, they are much smaller, but serve a purpose as well. They do a pretty good job (in my opinion) educating people about the dangers and myths surrounding "Gun Control" with their books and DVD's. When it comes to the JPFO, maybe it's best to support them by just buying their material.

Just remember, when things go bad for gun owners, who other than the NRA is there to help?

chris
04-08-2007, 12:17 PM
dude join the NRA without them the victory we had last year would have been very hard.

mcubed4130
04-08-2007, 11:15 PM
Ok, upgraded the wifey to lifetime NRA also. Price went up, but now that I know it's going to the right place. I'm happy to send the money.

I'll checkout the local NRA council next (mine appears to meet at Reeds Indoor Range in Santa Clara - which is where I normally shoot handguns anyway)... So I guess even though I never see anything about CA - on the NRA-ILA alerts, I will just trust they are working behind the scenes on the right things.

Greatly appreciate all the feedback! Thank you!

-M3

.17HMR_Fan
05-09-2007, 5:27 PM
This is an interesting thread, and from a mostly California perspective I must agree with what has been said.

I am a life member of the NRA, a member of NRA's ILA and a regularly contributor to Political Victory Fund etc...

I was a member of CRPA as long as I lived in California.

I am a life Member of GOA (Gun Owners of America)

And as I agree that most "other" CA based lobby groups are of small consequence in the scheme of things, I do not believe in putting all my eggs in one basket. And I do not think a group without very active membership can accomplish much. So my advise is to not only join and donate funds, but to do as others have said and join the local councils. I was a member of the NRA silicon Valley Council from early on until I moved away.

Getting and staying involved locally allows for local State and Federal representation and keeps you well informed.

But on a National level my hat is off to GOA. GOA is perhaps the finest no compromise Pro Gun lobby group in America. The NRA -- while being king -- sadly lets a few slip through, I guess because they are doing so much already. But time and again it has been Gun Owners of America that has stepped in and filled that gap. They have a full time lobbyist in Washington and a supremely well organized campaign for contacting representatives in real time on issues of concern to Gun Owners.

And right now as I type this the NRA had board members negotiating with Democratic leaders in Congress to support the Brady Expansion, while GOA is determined to stop it cold. The problem with the NRA right now is they are sending mixed messages and a lot of GOP leadership is confused thinking Gun Owners support expansion of the Brady Law. Only GOA is making the one solid statement that any infringement is a violation of the trust Gun Owners place in their sworn officials.

I still support the NRA for all its good. But my main trust at the Federal Level is in GOA. I do not think any true defender of arms has a complete quiver until they have added GOA to the arrows they are slinging at the enemies of freedom in Washington.

See http://www.gunowners.org/

Respectfully submitted,
.17HMR_Fan

hoffmang
05-09-2007, 6:05 PM
GAO takes certain extreme positions publicly that the other side can use against us. Opposing steps to help states report mental health adjudication isn't a winning position for example.

-Gene

KenpoProfessor
05-09-2007, 6:28 PM
http://www.cato.org/support/index.html

This is their contribution page. These are the people financing Parker, that's where I want my money to go. Matt Corwin fund is another place for a generous donation as well.

Have a great Kenpo day

Clyde

hoffmang
05-09-2007, 7:30 PM
Levy is affiliated with Cato, but Cato money did not actually go into Parker. That said, Cato is quite supportive and worthy of support.

-Gene

mikehaas
05-10-2007, 10:33 AM
I'm waiting for Mike Haas to stumble across this one.
Huh? Why me? Just because of these items hanging in my living room??? :-)

http://patriotboxers.com/haas/nramirror.jpg

http://nrawinningteam.com/poster1.jpg

Mike

rivviepop
12-21-2007, 2:45 PM
Hats off to all you guys (Bill, Gene, etc.) - I almost joined the CPRA today before finally finding this old thread, now I think I'll keep the checkbook in my pocket, as they say.

Hopi
12-21-2007, 3:12 PM
Another vote for the N.R.A. and one for The Cato Institute.....

dixieD
12-21-2007, 4:55 PM
What about JPFO? What do people know about them?