Social Question

ETpro's avatar

Is the NRA deliberately a provocateur?

Asked by ETpro (34568points) February 17th, 2013

I leveled this charge in this thread discussing the recently revealed NRA enemies list. I said the NRA is doing and saying utterly outrageous things to make itself a lightning rod. In doing so, it provides cover for the arms industry that provides the bulk of the NRA’s funding, and for whom the NRA really works. The organization may have had a goal of representing the interests of hunters and shooting enthusiasts at one time, but times have changed.

Can you even imagine Congressional hearings where the CEOs of the nation’s major arms industries are called to testify? It’s always Wayne LaPierre there to take the heat—indeed to draw heat and fire by constantly talking more crazy. In doing so, he serves as a heat shield for the industry the NRA acts as a trade lobbying group for.

A crazy, paranoid NRA also helps the industry’s marketing efforts. In the past, the number of homes with a gun was slowly on the rise in the USA. Industry expansion and profit growth just required that the gun industry paint a compelling picture that safety requires that every home owner have a gun. But statistics show just the opposite. People living in households with a gun are far more likely to die in their homes in gun violence than those without a gun are to die at home due to all kinds of violence combined. Having a gun does not make you safer, it makes you more vulnerable, and more and more people are catching on to that.

So today, the number of US households with a gun is slowly decreasing. But the total number of guns in America is rising dramatically. Industry expansion is increasingly driven by selling more and more guns to an ever shrinking number of extremely paranoid, frightened people. It is driven by convincing such paranoids that their own government is there worst enemy, that the UN has a secret army and magical black helicopters swarm from its New York headquarters nightly, using beyond state-of-the-art sensors to sweep the land for the gun owners. That FEMA is building a nationwide network of reeducation camps to turn us all into communist minions of the New World Order that the Illuminati or the Builderburgers or some such are behind. If the International terrorists don’t get you, then the “Jack Booted Thugs” you thought were going to protect you from terrorists will. Or perhaps global warming is real, and any day we will descend into a gang-ruled dystopia that is a bad blend of Mad Max and Kevin Costner’s Waterworld. The only hope is to amass a mountain of guns and ammo, and build a secret underground bunker fully stocked with MREs, weapons, ammo and a tin foil shield to render the sensors on the black helicopters useless.

Read La Pierre and tell me if you think I’m wrong.

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18 Answers

zensky's avatar


woodcutter's avatar

They are the main bulwark against the misrepresentations of those who associate themselves with the anti gun lobby. How could a forceful defense of gun rights not be expected?

ucme's avatar

I just think they’re a bunch of tubthumping dumb fucks with tiny penises.

woodcutter's avatar

So today, the number of US households with a gun is slowly decreasing.

Seriously? How slow? There is no way a number like that could ever be compiled ,and I call cherry picking sources. If someone claiming to be so and so conducting a gun count there are going to be soooooo many people millions of them giving false information that the count will be off by who knows how much. If I were to be asked, I would not tip my hand. 2nd amendment conscience people are not going to disclose their personal inventory. It just isn’t done. The only people who would cooperate with a survey are going to be leftists pushing down on the scale. Nobody in this climate is going to disclose squat but a very tiny minority.

Jaxk's avatar

I read the study and honestly, find it interesting. However, I don’t think you can make the absolute conclusions that you have based on this study. For instance they recognise the need for more study to associate the risk inherent in the environment such as high crime neighborhoods and the impact of gun deaths.

“The findings for homicide, while showing an elevated risk, have consistently been more modest. They suggest a need for more research to better distinguish the risk and protective factors associated with guns in the home, including an examination of the risk posed by forces both internal and external to the home.”

Suicides are a different animal altogether. It is almost amusing to have a study tell us that most gun suicides were in homes that had a gun. Nor am I surprised to learn that most suicides that happened in the home were gun related. After all, if you jump off a building, it didn’t happen in the home. The study also acknowledges:

“Studies of defensive gun use suggest that millions of defensive gun use incidents occur each year by people to protect themselves or their property against assaults, theft, or break-ins (30, 31).”

It is significant to measure the lives harmed vs. lives saved.

As to your initial question, it doesn’t seem abnormal for the gun lobby to get more emotional as the Anti-gun lobby becomes more emotional. This whole argument seems to be based on emotion rather than data or facts.

ETpro's avatar

@zensky Thanks, but you were too late. I had to flag myself and take myself off to the woodshed for much needed chastisement. I’d spell and source checked the whole thing, but then inadvertently grabbed the pre-check copy. So in editing, I was able to slide the missing reference in as well.

@woodcutter The 2nd Amendment and today’s Supreme Court seem adequate to protecting rights to own firearms. I won’t argue that there are no do-gooders thinking like the prohibitionists—if something can ever do harm, completely banish it. But I do think we learned a thing or two from the failure of prohibition. Automobiles demonstrably can be dangerous. We do have some limits on their use. We have universal background checks, licensing, competency testing. But the AAA doesn’t take that as reason to rail against any limits to driving, insisting that the criminally insane and habitual drunks are criminals anyway, and therefore laws against their right to drive won’t work.

You can call cherry picking all you want. Here the reference. I say you’ll find more real cherries in data meticulously gathered by federal agencies chartered to track such things than you will find pulling numbers out of your butt. If you want to refute the data CNN quoted, find equally credible sources that actually dispute it.

@ucme I’ve seen no studies supporting a correlation between gun ownership and penis size. :-)

@Jaxk I completely concur with the fact that single studies can be misleading. The recent shooting by Oscar Pistorius in South Africa points up a weakness in the argument that gun control alone is the silver bullet to end all gun violence. South Africa has 100% universal background checks. You must get several friends or relatives to vouch for you, including household members if such exist. And you must go through a firearms safety program before being allowed to purchase a gun. Nonetheless, South Africa has a gun homicide and gun violence rate far higher than in gun saturated America. Socio-economic factors obviously play a large role, and one difficult to pin down.

ucme's avatar

@ETpro When you have a hard on for firearms like they do, then there’s gotta be something lacking in the trouser department.

burntbonez's avatar

Honestly, I’m not sure. When you’re so passionate about a topic, you start to lose any sense of proportion. They may be naturally provocateurs, and their support from the gun industry could just be a natural alliance.

Yeah, I’m more inclined to believe they are honestly crazy than to think they are doing it deliberately.

Coloma's avatar

Neanderthals, plain and simple.
I say ship ‘em off to a remote area and let the lunatics go into full bore survival mode. They can pick each other off like rabbits. The scariest thing is they are so delusional and absolutely convinced of their rightness. Scary bad and dangerous group.

wundayatta's avatar

Aw come on, @Coloma. Don’t you think calling them Neanderthal is giving them too much credit?

I agree that they aren’t playing games. They are true believers. They should be shut up in a reservation with each other and encouraged to shoot anything that moves. Unless, of course, they could be convinced to shoot things that don’t move. Like rocks and watermelons.

Coloma's avatar

@wundayatta Agreed, Neanderthal is too lenient of a term, and hey, no shooting innocent and defenseless fruit. They probably have enough empty cans of Coors Lite to take pot shots at for the rest of their days anyway. lol

ucme's avatar

Neanderthals…what the fuck have the dutch got to do with it?

mazingerz88's avatar

Yes. Very profitable provocateurship.

ETpro's avatar

@ucme OK, at least a few inches worth of evidence.

@burntbonez If we’re talking about their sheeple, then I agree. The NRA management seems to take whatever stance is most advantageous to the market they wish to promote, and that leads me to believe that in their case, the motivation is greed and nothing more complex that that.

@wundayatta & @Coloma I’d love to watch that as an season of Survivor, Final Firepower Edition.

@mazingerz88 I may question the ethics, but I can’t question the effectiveness. Weapons sales are through the roof.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I noted in my copy of the Mo Conservationist that Missouri alone gets over $6.6 million from hunters each year. Multiply that by each state and you’ll see how much money is at stake.

Of course they’re making a big deal of the current situation. The more you hear about gun limitation of any kind, you’ll continue to hear about gun sales rising.

wundayatta's avatar

Only $6.6 million, @KNOWITALL? That’s chump change. Missourians must not like to hunt very much. Compared to what hunters spend on guns and ammo, that kind of money wouldn’t buy popcorn in a popcorn factory. When you’re going up against strip miners and oil drillers and frackers, that kind of money might buy you a postage stamp patch of grass in the middle of an industrial park.

And you know an industrial park is not a park at all.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@wundayatta I’m pretty sure that’s what it said, it’s not in front of me right this second and I can’t find the article in the online version. We have a ton of liberals in Missouri believe it or not.

ETpro's avatar

Some relevant stuff from the Daily Kos today. Pay particular attention to the link at the end of the brief blurb to this January Article in Business Insider magazine.

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