I well remember attending rod and gun club meeting with my dad in 1950s small town Arizona — a friendly atmosphere with local farmers and business people talking about hunting and fishing, the proper caliber rifle for different game, and so forth. I remember the NRA-sponsored safety class as a prerequisite to receiving a 22-caliber single shot rifle on my 10th birthday. Then came puberty, girls, high school, college, and military service.
Fast forward to 1970, newly discharged from the Army, I attended a meeting of this same rod and gun club with the intention of joining. The local farmers and business people were replaced by the local loonies and bottom feeders. Topics ranged from storing weapons and ammunition for the upcoming government takeover, to how to form a local chapter of the KKK. I feel this has also happened to the NRA. It’s gone from a family oriented organization focused on safety and gun-related sports to a half-crazed lobbying group for weapons and munition manufacturers.
Disclaimer: As submitted to the Arizona Daily Star.