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Posted: 12/20/2001 6:15:40 PM EDT
A recent post by GovtThug and Mouseboy on renewed drive by the Brady Center in exploiting 9-11 to further encroach our civil liberties has fouled my mood tonight. These groups are many, organized, well funded, and are experts in skewing public opinion. Their use of flawed statistics, logic, and exploitation of tragedies makes me sick. But anger amongst ourselves does nothing. Anger toward these groups does nothing. I believe to change what has become anti-gun culture here, we must revamp our strategies. For one, gun owners/groups/espcially the NRA is ALWAYS on the defensive whenever there is a crime committed with a gun. That is no way to win a fight. We are all aware of their flawed statistics, anecdodal evidence, and general ignorance about societal implications of gun owners/ownership in general. Why doesn't the general public know that? That's our fault. We have numerous data, accounts, studies that support our position. What we lack is the proper PR. Our message, our focus must shift to put the antis into a defensive posture. NRA for the most part stands only on one leg, that we have a constitutional right to bear arms. Unfortunately we all know this is not enough. If NRA is not up to this challenge, new organizationS must be formed for this purpose and we should support them generously. Also, we must organize and support a new wave of pro-gun research to challenge the antis and flood all forms of public media. Research data forms the basis of a convincing argument. Anti's have amassed and used to their advantage a collection of mostly flawed data. We must do the same. Quality is important but sheer number is sometimes more so in swaying public opinion. It's time to re-organize. It's time to get our message out to the Joneses.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 6:34:06 PM EDT
That's a great idea in theory but what makes you think said org. will be allowed to "flood" media with these facts? Can you name one pro gun media source? At best you'd end up getting the same spin that every thing put out by the NRA gets. The general public eats it up. Everybody knows the TV doesn't lie. Even pro gun guys believe everything they hear on TV unless it's about guns. The era of thinking for yourself went out with yesterdays trash. Get used to the new world.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 6:42:49 PM EDT
You sound as if you have already thrown in the towel. I agree this will be difficult, I don't expect instant coverage of our side of the story/research on CNN and NBC. But we must drive toward that goal. Networks feed off of public opinion, it's still about ratings. We have to make and build upon gradual steps, for example, aggressive advertising campaign is one way but there are others.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 6:52:09 PM EDT
[url]http://www.a-human-right.com/[/url] I have been pondering this for a while now...
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:00:49 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:03:10 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:06:29 PM EDT
... good point. after all, we got GWB in office as much as Klinton got himself out. ... we all need to press this to all gun owners that may be oblivious to it.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:14:51 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:31:52 PM EDT
You aren't going to change their minds with facts. The anti-BOR crowd thrives off of emotion and anecdotal "evidence". Let's say there is a Congressional hearing on the 2nd Amendment. The pro-gun side could have 100 John Lotts presenting volumes of verifiable evidence. Then the socialists bring forward a handful of Stephen Sposato types, crying alligator tears while screaming "my daughter will never see her mother again because of "assault weapons"!". Guess who will get the media attention and support of the sheeple??? I don't know how it will be possible to change the tide now that the anti-gun brainwashing has gone on for more than 2 generations. Nothing short of invasion by a foreign power, mass rioting, or total infrastructure collapse will get the sheeple to wake up to reality. Y2K was the last realistic chance.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:34:22 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:51:13 PM EDT
As of 1991 69% of teenagers 14-19 supported banning handguns. And 54% were in favor of a national registration of all long guns. Whoever controls the children,owns the future.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 7:54:36 PM EDT
Originally Posted By sigman: As of 1991 69% of teenagers 14-19 supported banning handguns. And 54% were in favor of a national registration of all long guns. Whoever controls the children,owns the future.
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The fact is that with all the anti gun media and teachings that indoctrinate kids today,I don't see a gun culture 25years down the road.
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 8:41:31 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/20/2001 8:34:30 PM EDT by ArmdLbrl]
you have got to be kidding me. A 1991 source? Do you realise how much has changed since then? This is meaningless, and the poll even in its day was probably biased. Only polling inner city kids in large easily accessed school districts. As long as we keep doing what we are doing and the crime rate stays low there wont be a "anti-gun lobby" in two decades..
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 8:44:52 PM EDT
Harruhmph, harruhmph
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 8:46:39 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/20/2001 8:55:58 PM EDT
Here's some statistics I came up with: 209,128,094 - US citizens 18 and older, 2000 census 60-65,000,000 - Gun owners in the US, NRA estimate 4,200,000 - NRA members 50,455,156 (47.87%) - votes for Republican presidential candidate, 2000 election 50,997,335 (48.38%) - votes for Democrat presidential candidate, 2000 election 384,429 (0.36%) - votes for Libertarian presidential candidate 2000 election What these numbers say to me is: 1. Number of gun owners (60,000,000 - conservative estimate) divided by number of possible gun owners (209,128,094) = 28.7% of US population owns guns. Despite the availability of guns in the US, we are outnumbered. 2. Number of NRA members (4,200,000) divided by number of gun owners (60,000,000) = 7% of gun owners belong to the NRA. Most gun owners choose not to be members of the most powerful gun rights protection organization. 3. If the 60-65 million gun owners in the US voted as a sigle unit, we could have picked the president of the US singlehandedly. In 2004, we could do the same. But obviously, not all gun owners voted. These statistics may not be scientific, but they're close enough to give us a good picture. Changing the anti-gun attitudes of the country is only one battle in the war. Overcoming the apathy that the majority of gun owners have about gun rights is another. And getting the gun owners organized and voting as a single unit is another.
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 8:27:32 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/21/2001 8:23:23 AM EDT by ckapsl]
Everyone has raised good points here. The media is a difficult target to win over. I often email reporters and challenge their facts and claims, something that is easy to do because they are so bogus. I also introduce them to resources such as GOA's Firearms Fact Sheet at: http://[url]www.gunowners.org/fs0101.htm[/url] In the last few years, I have sent out maybe 200 such emails to news reporters, and have had some positive results. Even so, reporters have such a liberal lemming culture that the best I can hope for is to blunt their anti-gun attitude to the point where they realize that they are wrong and go write about something else. No, we have to win the war one trigger finger at a time, as Paul nicely puts it. I have taken some twenty people shooting over the years, most of them for their first time ever, and they have all loved it. If every one of us did that, the anti-gunners would have little sympathy left in the general public. Perhaps we should have a National Take a Friend to the Range Week, where every gun owner pledges to introduce at least one new person to shooting. I personally think that every gun activist should try to take [b][u]fifty[/u][/b] new people shooting in a lifetime. Friends, coworkers, managers, clergy, employees, just about anyone. However, try and make inroads into non-traditional demographics, such as women, liberals, city folk, people of influence in society, immigrants, and some specific minorities. In the meantime, there is a worthy organization that is working to change public opinion by using the mass media: http://[url]www.citizensofamerica.org[/url] They could use your support. The most potent weapon that we have is that guns are used for defense of self, family and home. It is vastly better than the worthless sporting purposes argument. Please bookmark the following page and use or forward it when necessary: http://[url]www.keepandbeararms.com/opsd[/url]
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 8:31:27 AM EDT
Originally Posted By sigman: As of 1991 69% of teenagers 14-19 supported banning handguns. And 54% were in favor of a national registration of all long guns. Whoever controls the children,owns the future.
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sigman, I would not worry too much about this. Teenagers: 1) Do not generally have as much access, legal and otherwise, to guns and shooting as do adults. 2) Do not generally have the money necessary to buy guns and shoot 3) Are in the grip of the paranoid school system. Once they are out, become adults, and start to realize their responsibilities, including the unfortunate necessity of self defense, these attitudes will change [b][u]if the rest of us do our part[/u][/b]. If we write them off as a lost cause, they will stay that way.
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 8:36:05 AM EDT
Originally Posted By BenDover: [url]http://www.a-human-right.com/[/url] I have been pondering this for a while now...
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This is an awesome site. When I lived in Utah, I printed out a few of Oleg Volk's photos (with captions) and put them up on all the bulletin boards that I could find in the University of Utah. It cost me only a few cents, but if it changed even one mind and introduced doubt into the others, it was well worth it.
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 9:19:28 AM EDT
I've been occasionally posting about taking new folks to the range. I figure 12 people a year (one a month) would be about right. I'm going to miss that total this year (only 10), but plan on making it up next year. On the NRA numbers vs. Gun Owner numbers....there are a lot of gun owners who aren't interested in the NRA, or have the wrong impression about the NRA. The 60 million is going to include Dianne Feinswein and Don Perata, for example. Some folks think the NRA is made up of a bunch of gun nuts who want to hunt rabbits with 50 cal machine guns. They are a shining example of how well CPHV and the BC's propaganda work effectively. Other people aren't interested in the NRA. Some folks own one or maybe two guns, and don't see the NRA as something that's going to benefit them in any way. A shining example of this is my brother, who owns a handgun, but doesn't think the NRA is useful or interesting to him or his rights (yes i'm working on him). He's also a bit further left in his political views, too. So that doesn't help. So, how do we go about solving some of the issues surrounding Rights Control groups? 1. The NRA needs to put out a friendly message to non-believers. That of being a responsible gun owner. Sure, I see NRA ads in gun mags, in other (conservative) publications. Preaching to the believers. Start talking to the non-believers. Convince them that their rights are under attack too...not just 2nd Amendment, but the ability to effectively defend themselves. 2. Fight back with positive information of our own. Take as many new people out shooting this year as you can. Teach them SAFE gun usage, and make sure they have FUN. Also emphasize they self-defense potential and rights issue while you are doing it, but don't overemphasize that end the first trip. You'll turn off their ears half way through telling them, trust me. Remember the Matrix? "Many of these people aren't ready to be unplugged." If you can't get someone out to the range, make sure they are aware of your views, but again...don't overemphasize. Getting the "Gun Nut" moniker from an anti can be powerful in marking you as a nut. Don't be gung-ho pro-militia, anti-government, etc. Just try and explain that the 2nd is there for more than "sporting purpose" and that it includes self-defense. 3. Fight back the Rights Control Groups. Sure, we know they distort facts and figures to suit their needs. Fight back with the real numbers. Show your sources very prominently. if you have figures from Police or FBI, make sure that you proudly say on the top of the page, chart, or sentence: From the FBI's 1999 Crime report, we can see that gun usage in violent crimes has dropped 20% since 1989. (note, that's just an example, a BS statement, not necessarily the truth). As a side note, remember Sun Tzu...become familiar with your enemy, so you can know his ways. I'm not suggesting that you join up with any of the Rights Control groups, rather, you stay informed of what they are doing. Take part in counter protests with the 2AS (2nd Amendment Sisters) or Tyranny Response Team.
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 9:22:43 AM EDT
Heh...typed more than I thought.... 4. Set a shining example as a good citizen. This is a big downfall in the eyes of many of the non-believers. Next time you are at that wilderness spot shooting, take an extra bag of trash out with you. Follow the speed limit. Say please and thank you. Help old ladies across the street. Say Hi to all your neighbors. Support a local Boy Scout, Girl Scout, Church Youth Group, etc. Show the world what a great person you are, and then, when they find out you own guns, they'll be shocked at what a real gun owner is like--an upstanding, good person. Many of us are already doing this (not me, entirely, but I'm trying). 5. Encourage people to vote. No, don't encourage them to vote Republican or something, just encourage them to vote. Dont try and force someone to your views...this almost NEVER works. Trust me. Instead, if you find a person not registered, encourage them to do so. Particularly after the last election, you can show them that they can make a difference. If they happen to ask what kind of views you have, great! If not, make sure they vote anyways. They may suprise you and already share some of your sentiments. 6. Support those who support you. I hate to say the following, but it's true. The Republican party as a whole is NOT our friend. Individuals in the party, however, are. Note the distinction when you send funds for election campaigns, etc...also make sure that the folks who you aren't supporting know why not. Yep, this means writing letters, calling or visiting politicians. Do it...you'd be suprised what effect it can eventually have. A second part of this is supporting groups that support your rights. The 2AS, 2nd Amendment Foundation, JPFO, Frontsight, and the NRA to some extent, are all groups that are fighting in some way for you. You should help them out when you can. I realize right now is a bad time for many folks, particularly one's who've been laid off. That's ok...call up and see if you can volunteer at a local Pro Rights group maybe one day a week. I think i've moved away from this topic a little more than I wanted to, sorry. [:)]
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 10:32:25 AM EDT
Convince them that their rights are under attack too...not just 2nd Amendment, but the ability to effectively defend themselves.
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This can help some... but there are those that have been beaten in with the "you are a sheep" stick. I am sad to say that my brother falls into this category. In a (somewhat heated) conversation over thanksgiving he asked me if I thought i was really willing to use my weapon to help defend my country if we were invaded. I answered with a simple yes. He proceded to tell me that our military does not need nor does it want us helping. And that he would try to leave the country and let our military do its work. Where he ever got this "abandon in time of need" theory, i do not know. How many others out there have this view is what worries me. I have every intention of working on him, subtly if i can, abusively if i have to [stick]
Link Posted: 12/21/2001 4:54:20 PM EDT
You guys have some excellent comments and ideas. Great links too.
Link Posted: 12/23/2001 8:15:14 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/23/2001 8:12:30 AM EDT by Hank]
Link Posted: 12/23/2001 9:03:14 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Paul: Forget the media - snip We must win the hearts and minds of our girlfriends, neighbors, coworkers and friends one trigger finger at a time. snip Make it your mission to find a couple people a year, a month or even a week to expose to proper gun use.
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This is a war that can be won "one trigger finger at a time." Absolutely. Fact: Woman cannot protect themselves or their children from a larger and meaner person. Fact: With a minimum amount of training and a reliable firearm women can protect themselves and their children. Conclusion: Women should be the #1 advocates for the Second Amendment. Hello Imbroglio: "Y2K was the last realistic chance." I respectfully disagree. The last realistic chance is President Bush and Attorney General John Ashcroft and the Republicans in Congress, as well as the NRA, GOA, and everyone else of goodwill and common sense working towards saving the Second Amendment, peacefully.
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