The NRA Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that raises and donates money to outdoors groups and others such as ROTC programs, 4-H and Boy Scouts. In 2010, the NRA Foundation distributed $21.2 million in grants for gun-related training and education programs: $12.6 million to the NRA itself, and the rest to community programs for hunters, competitive shooters, gun collectors, and law enforcement, and to women and youth groups.
Friends of NRA is a program that raises money for the NRA Foundation. Since its inception in 1992, Friends of NRA has held over 17,600 events, reached over 3.2 million attendees and raised over $600 million for The NRA Foundation.
You already know how I feel about the National Rifle Association (NRA), for I have made my thoughts known frequently on this blog. But, until this morning, I was unaware of both the NRA Foundation and the Friends of NRA. They came onto my radar via an article in The Washington Post about Friends of NRA holding gun auctions in schools! That’s right, folks … in schools. A few excerpts from the Post article …
Parents and students trickled into the Muhlenberg County High School gym on a hot Saturday night as the sounds of cheers and a referee’s whistle carried from an athletic field nearby. Inside the “Home of the Mustangs,” Friends of NRA was raffling off guns: semiautomatic rifles and handguns, guns with high-capacity magazines and pump-action shotguns.In the past two years, the NRA Foundation’s fundraising program had displayed actual guns along the wooden bleachers in the gym. This time organizers showed only pictures, bowing to objections from parents who pointed to a shooting at another western Kentucky high school last year that left two students dead and more than a dozen wounded.
“It’s obscene that they have had guns inside our gym,” said Shannon Myers, whose 16-year-old son attends band practice next to the gym where the event was held in September.
That money is the leading source of cash for the NRA Foundation, a charity that supports the shooting sports. The events combine the efforts of what organizers say are 13,000 volunteers with the NRA’s multimillion-dollar marketing machine. They are family-focused by design, helping to cultivate the next generation of gun owners and NRA members.
Helping to cultivate the next generation of gun owners. Think about that one. According to the Friends of NRA Facebook page …
“Every year the NRA fights for our Second Amendment rights. But what is being done to ensure the firearm traditions we love today don’t become a thing of the past? The answer . . . Friends of NRA.”
Yesterday, in my Snarky Snippets piece, I made note of a few shootings in the past week, including one 7-year-old child who was shot by a 15-year-old child. In response to that segment, one UK friend commented that “You guys have got a serious problem with firearms.” That may just be the understatement of the year … we have more than a serious problem if we are auctioning guns in schools, and “cultivating the next generation of gun owners”.
The following video, put out by the Friends of NRA, will give you an idea of just how serious a problem we have in this country …
The auction held at Muhlenberg County High School in Kentucky that was referenced by the Post was held in September, and was attended by more than two dozen children, some of them toddlers sitting on their parents’ laps. Hundreds of schools around the country host these events. One of the organizers of the Muhlenberg auction was annoyed by activists who find it inappropriate, to say the least, to bring guns into schools, and said …
“If you pick up one of these guns and shoot someone with it, it’s not the gun’s fault, is it? You pulled the trigger. Everybody wants to blame the ARs. Anyone can cause just as much problems with a knife.”
In the U.S., it is illegal to purchase cocaine, heroin, or other such drugs. Why? Because they are dangerous and can ultimately cost the life of the person who takes them. Yet, not only are guns not illegal, but they can be purchased by almost anybody in a Wal-Mart, at a gun show, or even at an auction in your local high school gymnasium. And, while an overdose of heroin will kill a person, that AR-15 that was auctioned off at the high school event could potentially kill dozens.
The NRA Foundation is considered a ‘charity’; therefore they pay no taxes on the money they take in. They spend that money to provide guns to people and to defend ‘gun rights’ around the nation. We have, as of 2018, approximately 553,000 homeless people in the U.S., and 18.5 million people in this nation are considered to be living in deep poverty. It is my not-so-humble opinion that the NRA, it’s various outlets, and the people who support it have their priorities seriously skewed.
As I mentioned in my Snippets post, there have already been more than 32,000 gun deaths in the U.S. this year … in just over 10 months. There are more firearms in circulation in the U.S. than there are people. We have, I think, more than a ‘serious problem’ … we have the makings of a catastrophe.