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Columns

The Truth Is Better Than Fiction

June 12, 2019 - 10:15am
Marion Hammer
Marion Hammer

It never ceases to amaze me how quickly people believe distortions printed by the media -- particularly in their efforts to help the enemies of freedom and the Second Amendment and to try to destroy the NRA. Nor does it cease to amaze me how willing the media are to deliberately distort and mislead. 

The Washington Post used legitimate expense reimbursements and recruiter payments to drive their narrative and pad their numbers to falsely cast aspersions on 18 board members and the NRA (the story can only be found behind the Post's paywall). It is a deliberate distortion and an orchestrated attempt to convey a false impression.    

The numbers weren’t extraordinary if one looks at it from a one-year perspective, so the Washington Post lumped three years of reports together to make the amounts look larger and more lucrative. That is the epitome of calculated treachery!     

Board members who are NRA recruiters get no special treatment. They, like all recruiters get the same commission that any recruiter receives. Yet the Washington Post makes it sound like they’re stealing or have some sweetheart deal. Some of these board members use their businesses to recruit members and they disclose it. Yet the Washington Post attacks them for serving the NRA – and for trying to get more people to sign up as NRA members.

Also included in the scurrilous attack are board-member reimbursements for travel at the NRA's request, for speaking engagements and appearances at events to which the NRA is requested to send a representative. Some board members make these trips and appearances at the NRA’s request because the officers and staff can’t do it all.

In addition to taking off from work and giving their time, perhaps the Post expects board members to pay for airline travel, lodging, meals and expenses out of their own pockets to travel for the NRA? 

Another big fraud by the Washington Post suggests that when the NRA purchases materials, supplies and services from board members or their businesses, board members are getting rich. Anyone alleging that Hornady or Brownell needs the paltry sums disclosed by the Washington Post clearly has no idea what they’re talking about. What nonsense! 

Board members whose companies sell products to the NRA for discounted prices don’t need to do business with the NRA, they have plenty of customers. It’s the NRA that wants to do business with them -- for better deals than we can get elsewhere.  

Have you been paying attention the New York governor’s attempt to maliciously stop companies from doing business with the NRA? Since the NRA is under attack -- by what has all the earmarkings of a coordinated attack -- would you believe that some businesses want to charge the NRA more just to do business with them? Because of this orchestrated attack, some businesses refuse to do any business at all with the NRA.  

Yet, the Washington Post wants you to believe that board members somehow have sweetheart deals and try to paint them as engaging in some illegal activity. What bull! The NRA has the sweetheart deal!  The NRA and our members benefit from the good deals NRA gets when we use board members.  

Heck, the Washington Post even used a deceased board member and friend, R. Lee Ermey, to pad its false narrative. For crying out loud, the Washington Post even disparaged a dead man --  who has been gone since last April -- to pad its numbers! That is as bad as Joe Biden claiming he just talked to Margaret Thatcher when she actually died three years earlier.

Board members’ legitimate expenses are being made to look sneaky by a publication that has no love for the Second Amendment, or the NRA. Are you going to fall for it? Or are you going to open your eyes and your mind?

Payments to board members are disclosed, in writing, at every NRA Annual Meeting.  Stacks of disclosure reports are put on a table along with other financial reports at the Annual Meeting of members and are available to members and the media. These reports are where they got the information they are distorting.

And, yes -- I am on that list.  I am proud of my work on behalf of the NRA and the Second Amendment. I have spent my entire professional life in this arena. For over 40 years I have been standing on the front line fighting for Right-to-Carry, Castle Doctrine, preemption and the list of pro-Second Amendment legislation goes on. The list of anti-gun, freedom crippling legislation is even longer. In fact, I was lobbying for the NRA long before I was elected to the Board and long before I was elected NRA president. There aren’t many states in which I haven’t helped fight for the Second Amendment.  

Isn’t it interesting that in this article, the Washington Post points out that there are other non-profit organizations that require their board members to make financial donations to these organizations in order to get on their boards?

In other words, some other non-profit organizations require people to "buy" their seats on their boards. I guess the Washington Post thinks that's OK. But the NRA’s democratically elected board is demonized?

For the past few months, the media have trained their guns on the NRA and those of us within our movement. They are happily doing the bidding of Mike Bloomberg, Andrew Cuomo, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.  

The simple fact is that Second Amendment rights are the only means that citizens have to protect their ability to protect freedom from the enemies of America. Give up that right and you are no longer free.  

If you think the NRA is the only organization they are turning their guns on, just wait ... we may be the first but we won’t be the last. Make no mistake, we are the first, because we are the most effective. This is the price the NRA is paying for getting Donald Trump elected and for securing the Supreme Court for a couple of generations.

I believe with all my heart that the freedom we enjoy today depends on the NRA standing guard to protect Second Amendment rights from the enemies of freedom and our Constitution. I want that freedom and those rights for my grandchildren and for yours.  

Marion P. Hammer is a past president of NRA and a member of the NRA Board of Directors.

Comments

I heard when I got on the internet in 1997 vague complaints about Ackerman-McQueen (AckMac) and board members and insiders. I wrote it off to Internet nuts. The Net is full of loons. I kept hearing it, for many years. Often from people who had nothing to gain, not know lunatics, and asking questions about AckMac and insider dealings. It kept coming up. Now the New York Attorney General is investigating, the NRA is suing AckMac, AckMac is suing NRA. The NY AG doesn't care about your gun rights, in fact they are trying to DESTROY NRA and nothing will stop them. They have an infinite budget, and state power to help them to destroy NRA. You're devotion to the Second Amendment, your love of guns mean nothing. NRA has to be super pure, and if nothing is changed there and there is the slightest irregularity, the AG will savage them. It's time to stop circling the wagons around the same people who'll be responsible for anything the government attacks them on. If the same person sitting in the same chair and they're accused of mismanagement or worse, it is not going to look good at best. Your devotion to gun rights and being law abiding isn't going to STOP the NY AG. Stop the CYA and change things up, bring in a neutral accounting or law firm and audit everything and everyone. Then move out the old guard, and set things up so NO ONE can question how things that are done in the open and transparently ever again. We got enough fights in the legal arena with laws and government "reinterpretations" of the present laws and administrative interpretations of how the laws are administered. CYA to stay in power isn't going to help, even if in the end there is no serious issues found.

KEEP IT UP FOLKS,... See how easy it is to "draw all the left-leaning liberal roaches out of the woodwork", as well as the "whacked socialist, moles out of their holes"?!?!? It's more fun than a "barrel full of leftist Democrats"!

One of the things that we've lost over the last many years is an ability to be civil. Just because one has a different opinion on one issue doesn't mean opposition on all issues. There really is no place for name calling in American politics and if you are a patriot, which I hope you are, you might want to consider discussing issues and disagreements with civility. I really believe you can do better and hope you will

There is a war going on in this country. The elite and their dupes want civilian firearm ownership banned by law. If you disagree with their agenda, fight back with like minded citizens and organizations knowing that your foes control the media. In war even an ally you disagree with is better than the alternative, which of course is surrender, and defeat.

The author is correct in that there is no problem with benefits that ***all board members are entitled to*** whether or not they are in favor with management. These include travel reimbursements, recruitment commissions, and even arms length supplier sales that are open to others. But this ignores the cronyism. Directors who collect big benefits (like Hammer's six-figure lobbying paychecks from the NRA, others' paid speaking gigs, valuable media appearances, etc.) are beholden unto management that doles our these goodies, and can withhold them if a Director strays from Wayne's World.

The only thing "The Hammer" is missing is "The Sickle"!

I've done my part of business travel over the years but my travel bills did not reach $610K over one or three year period.

Dear NRA..... Stop "negotiating" excuses to INFRINGE on OUR RIGHTS... If there must be background checks, let's try this idea... Are there any ‘legislators’ that are interested in a UnConstitutional Background Check? Since SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED means exactly that.. Let’s try a “Background Check” that DOES NOT INFRINGE on anybodies RIGHTS…A FULL, IN DEPTH background check for ALL Politicians, Bureaucrats, and ALL government employees, and set MINIMAL INTELLIGENCE, JOB SKILLS AND CHARACTER QUALITIES that must be met before they can run for office, be appointed or hired. That way, WE, THE PEOPLE, get a much better class of politicians and bureaucrats, as well as EMPLOYEES that can be trained to do the jobs they are being hired for. Any bets on how hard the political class will fight to prevent it? THAT would be a Background Check that nearly ALL AMERICAN CITIZENS will support and I don't much care if the illegals and their sycophants don't like the idea.

The NRA has been selling out the American gun owner for over 100 years. They actively supported the NFA in 1934, the Gun Control Act in 1968 and the oppositely named Firearm Owners' Protection Act of 1986 (FOPA) which removed the right of Americans to purchase new automatic or AOW weapons, a clear violation of the Second Amendment. All of this was done with the cooperation of the sellout Progressive owned and run Republican Party as well.

My Father was a longtime member of the NRA. He was a State Trooper and an NRA Home Firearms, Rifle, Pistol, Shotgun, Hunting and Archery Instructor. That NRA is gone. It became a wing of Republican Partisan politics. Instead of Firearms Safety, it's firearms for ebery Republican. You don't try to recruit Dems. True, some join. In fact many on the left are proguns. But. You're willing to deny exfelons firearms. And you don't do anything to change the narrative. Hard truth. Background checks don't stop criminals from getting firearms. It does stop law abiding exfelons from protecting themselves and their families. You're a hypocrite. You care only about your donors, firearms manufacturers and those on the right. What the NRA has become pathetic. I'll start to support you when you start defending the Constitution and firearms for exfelons. Oh yeah. Are you not following the law about that which by law you are required to release? Are you a felonious offender who by your own policy shouldn't be allowed to own a firearm? I don't expect an answer. Surprise me

The way you describe your dad Dean, and then spew your nonsensical rhetoric, is evidence of an unfaithful mother with a mentally off-kilter son named "Dean"... (There' your unexpected answer "bud".)

Complete B.S.

You can say whatever you want but the public is becoming increasingly aware of how little actual positive change and restoration of our 2nd Amendment Rights the NRA has brought us. The NRA has been taking hundreds of millions from Americans yearly only to reward them with the gradual erosion of their 2nd Amendment Rights and a lot of rich NRA officers and representatives. Everyone is better off donating their money to the GOA, SAF, etc., where it will be leveraged to actually FIGHT unconstitutional laws, not line someone's pockets.

Great article. I don't care if it makes the hate-filled democrats soil themselves.

Too bad she is full of Schiff.

Friar Tuck would have you believe her bullshit outside of the legislative halls the NRA so richly pays to have top influence. It was BS then and is still BS now. Fortunately, people are starting to decide for themselves instead of what these idiots, or the bigger idiots on FoxNews tells them. Fortunately, some of those folks at FoxNews are waking up too...

They blame the Post when it is only reporting what corruption Oliver North had brought up and got thrown out for exposing...…………..But fake news is common with the right as they are fiscally and morally bankrupt...………..We'll see in a few months when the investigations are done. …………….It'll go down just like the Trump Foundation.

Thanks, Marion for your factual and enlightening column...the Left is determined to take away our right to own guns, rifles, assault weapons, etc. and it's because of you, the NRA, and 2nd Amendment supporters that we still have our constitutional rights...there's a reason that gun ownership is the 2nd Amendment and not the 7th or 10th...its because our forefathers realized the potential tyranny of the majority and government if left to their own deeds...we can NEVER surrender our right to defend ourselves, our home, our family and our country!

Barney licking Hammers boots again and putting out fake news as usual...……. Biden is ahead of Chump in Florida and the repub party shrinks by the day as decent people flee...……...…..See you in 2020..;^)

Uh huh, Hillary was a 98% shoe-in for the White House. That worked out well for you.

Let's get the Fudds out of the NRA. Why has the organization been so ineffective at dismantling the "gun control" edifice in Congress when they have the chance?

Because while the Democrat party went full-on no-holds-barred extremist, the Republican party is afraid to upset anyone on the left.

ENEMIES OF FREEDOM: https://journalworker.wordpress.com/2019/06/12/communist-party-usa-to-hold-100th-anniversary-convention-in-chicago/

More blarney from a Ma Barker wannabe! "Lock Her Up!" (And, DEFINITELY, throw away the key!)

The only blarney is from left wing idiots, like yourself. that doesnt have the first clue what they are talking about. They flat out LIE and use bullshit statistics that are lies as well. Best thing you can do is keep quiet about things you know NOTHING about.

What Democrats hide, and refuse to remember, is that the NRA was created after Lincoln's "Emancipation Proclamation" to give freed slaves the means and methods to protect themselves from marauding Democrats who were bound & determined to "drive them out, or eliminate them altogether, by ANY means... The NRA will NEVER be "eliminated" Ms. Hammer,.. lest WE ALL be "driven out"....OR WORSE !

Revisionist history fake-news (once again) . . . . . . been listening to Glenn Beck again, haven't you . . . . . . instead, try looking at actual 1870's era statements by actual NRA organizers and members . . . . . . . similar accounts show up in books on the history of firearms and gun politics in the United States: Guns in American Society: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, Culture, and the Law (2012), Gun Violence in America: The Struggle for Control (2003), and Gun Politics in America (2016). . . . . . . . . . all of them cited the need for organized firearms training in the military as the primary motivation for the NRA’s creation; none of them mentioned protecting freed slaves or doing battle against the Ku Klux Klan . . . . . . . . . . . . fake history to try and cloud the issue is just so . . . . . . . . PATHETIC . . . . . .

Yup, the DNC created the KKK as its military arm to fight against blacks and Republicans after the democrats were defeated in the civil war. These solid and undeniable historical facts make democrats fume with anger as they try to defend their actions.

So true. Dems use to be the racist party but seen the error of their ways then repubs developed the southern strategy to bring the racists in by pandering to them , thus switching policies...…...……...Now the racists other lowlifes, Chump have taken over the party causing the decent people to leave.

Once upon a time the Democrat party and the Republican party got together and agreed to swap the names of their political parties. This happened shortly after it was discovered that the moon was made of green cheese and that the earth was flat.

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