Civil Discourse Now

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Will Democratic members of Congress now stop sucking up to the NRA?

   The president of the National Rifle Association yesterday stated the NRA has chosen the vehicle by which it will advance its political agenda. That "vehicle" is the Republican Party.

   For years members of each party have crawled over each other to seek NRA support. NRA support means money, as in $$$$. Members of the House of Representatives, who are in a constant fund-raising mode (one estimate is that 25% of a member's time is spent in fund-raising endeavors), take money when available. The NRA doles it out. Of course, a lot of corporate concerns dole out money. Unions, not so much as the other side of the industrial world.

   With the NRA's announcement, could members of the Democratic Party now get the idea that they can say "okay" to legislation that restrict private ownership of assault weapons, multi-round clips and mags, and sales of firearms? Can they push for greater background checks? These are restrictions favored by a majority of the population. Also, the firearms I mention are not simply for self-defense. They were designed for use in military situations---or as we once called those situations in America, "war." Now we have military conflicts fought by presidential fiat (R or D, there is little difference) with a nod of approval by the Congress.

   In the meantime, assault weapons and big clips/drums have no practical purpose except to kill other people. That was why a Hoosier invented the Gatling gun. Gatling thought the weapon was so terrible that people would give up the idea of war. That's another Hoosier who erred in his judgment.

   There is a theme or element of philosophy that is part of our American culture that harkens back to the early days of the Republic---and before. For one thing, Some Europeans came here for "freedom." Well, they wanted to avoid the rule of European royalty. That many of those Europeans then enslaved their fellows is an irony---and irony is another dominant element in America's history. People here questioned authority, unless they themselves wielded it. The Puritans wanted religious liberty---for themselves, as it turned out; anyone else was a heretic. And no one wanted to pay taxes---at all. This would seem to lend itself to anarchism.   

   Anyway, the Dems don't have to suck up to the NRA anymore. They don't HAVE to do so. Another matter is whether they will anyway.

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Comment by Bill Thompson on March 19, 2013 at 4:53pm

Compare these two numbers:

1) the number of murders committed in the past 5 years by people using fully-automatic weapons or rifles/handguns with extra-large magazines.

2) The number of Muslim children killed by Mr Obama's drones.

Which are you all worked up about, and why ?

Comment by Paul K. Ogden on March 19, 2013 at 8:37am

Your premise is completely wrong.  The NRA is not a huge contributor to political campaigns.  It never has been.  The NRA is powerful because its members are incredibly well organized and they're single issue voters.  You vote against what the NRA wants, and the NRA targets you.  Left-wingers though throw out the "NRA" as if all gun members are members of the NRA.  Many don't like the NRA, but gun rights supporters vote as a bloc for what they want.   There are other gun rights organizations, such as the Gun Owners of America.  If the NRA had its way, the Hellyer and McDonald cases never would have happened.

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