NRA Responds to Member's Concern
of Their Support of CARA
From: "ILA-Contact" <ILA-Contact@nrahq.org>
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2001 16:23:26 -0400
Subject: RE: Contact from NRAhq web site: Membership/General Comments
As for your concerns regarding NRA's
support of H.R. 701, the Conservation and Reinvestment Act (CARA), we appreciate
you sharing your opinions, and we are happy to explain our position.
First, our support of CARA is based
on a provision within the bill known as Title III-Wildlife Conservation and
Restoration. NRA helped to author Title III, which provides additional funds
to state fish and wildlife agencies through the Pittman-Robertson (P-R) trust
account. Congress established the P-R trust in the 1930s with the strong backing
of sportsmen, and the trust account assists states in conserving and restoring
wildlife and habitat, which is a benefit to hunters and other sportsmen.
Because NRA has a long history of
promoting and defending hunting as a shooting sport and as a viable and necessary
method of fostering the propagation, growth and conservation, and wise use of
our renewable wildlife resources, it is clearly appropriate for NRA to support
Title III. And since Title III is one of 10 different sections of CARA, it is
necessary for NRA to support CARA in order to ensure the passage of Title III.
In addition, all major hunting and conservation organizations support CARA.
While NRA's support of CARA is based
solely on Title III, we also understand that there are some organizations and
individuals that object to CARA because of Title II, which creates a land acquisition
trust account for the federal land management agencies. NRA certainly appreciates
the views of those opposed to federal land acquisition in general, and as it
relates to CARA, and NRA is very sensitive to the fears expressed by some of
our members that CARA may pose a threat to their interests that fall outside
NRA's purview of defending our Right to Keep and Bear Arms and hunting.
But it is also important for all
concerned to remember that NRA's strength is based on its narrow focus on protecting
the Second Amendment and our hunting heritage. This strength is enhanced by
not being involved with other matters-including the issue of federal land acquisition
per se-that might distract or divide our supporters. NRA has an obligation to
its members to remain focused on defending our firearm freedom as guaranteed
by the Constitution, and on preserving our
hunting heritage. As you can appreciate, the NRA's constituency is universal.
In protecting the right to arms and the future of hunting, our Association draws
allies from every point of the political, social, racial, religious, geographic
and economic spectra. Since our members are powerfully united on firearm and
hunting-related issues, our strength is enhanced by not being involved with
other issues that could split our base of support.
Unfortunately, several organizations
and individuals that are primarily concerned with federal land acquisition issues
have launched a campaign against NRA because of its support of CARA's Title
III. These opponents of CARA appear to have an overall objection to the federal
government acquiring any private land-even land that may later be used to expand
hunting opportunities or establish ranges for the general public. Because these
organizations and individuals have failed to convince lawmakers to remove Title
II from CARA or amend it to their satisfaction, they recently resorted to launching
attacks on NRA in an attempt to convince NRA members to urge their Association
to take up their specific cause. The NRA has openly supported Title III since
CARA was introduced in 1998, leaving one to wonder why these organizations and
individuals did not raise their concerns earlier.
This deceptive tactic by CARA's
opponents has led to confusion among some NRA members, leading some to question
NRA's support of CARA. And even though opposition to CARA has been based on
issues that fall well outside NRA's purview, NRA is still a membership-driven
organization, and we are always very responsive to the concerns of our members.
While we support Title III of CARA, we are keeping close track of the comments
from those NRA members who have expressed their opposition. This issue will
likely be discussed in several committees during NRA's Board Meeting in November,
and you can rest assured that the voice of those NRA members who have expressed
their concern regarding NRA support of CARA will be heard.
Again, we appreciate you sharing
your concerns, and we hope that NRA can still count on your support. Even if
we cannot see eye-to-eye on this particular issue, it is important for the pro-gun
community to continue to work together and present a united front. Of course,
the ultimate decision regarding the outcome of CARA will come from Congress,
so we encourage any NRA member with strong views regarding this legislation
to contact your federal lawmakers.
Rebecca A. Williams
From: NRA Auto Responder [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Sunday, October 21, 2001 6:43 PM
Subject: Contact from NRAhq web site: Membership/General CommentsContact type:
Name: Richard Beamis
Address: xxxxx xth Ave SW
Membership Number: 70818063
Message: I have not renewed my dues this year and will not do so until I'm convinced
that the NRA is totally on the side of what's right. There must be no compromise
in our fight against those who would seek to enslave us for once ground is given,
it's nearly impossible to regain. The NRA has given too much ground already
and is supporting giving even more ground up by supporting CARA. I suggest you
rethink your support of this anti-American legislation before you alienate your
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