Your ever lovable Grey Beard Biker wrote two weeks ago about how important the National Rifle Association is to gun owners across the country. Whether you are a hunter, gun collector, enjoy sporting clays or carry a gun everyday for self defense, the NRA has been there for over a century protecting these God given rights. In my last article, I asked each of you to go over to the Save the 2A website and learn of their recommendations to “right the ship” at the NRA. Please do so.
Oliver North & Chris Cox
If you read my last article, you know of the troubles NRA’s relationship with Ackerman-McQueen have caused the gun rights group. There were allegations of Ackerman overcharging the NRA for services or even charging them for consulting they provided other companies. The NRA sued Ackerman-McQueen – which will inevitably result in testimony coming forth airing NRA’s dirty laundry – the skeletons in their closest, so to speak. After filing suit, Oliver North came forward to Wayne LaPierre with information that Ackerman-McQueen had an incriminating letter they were going to make public. This promptly led to Oliver North’s termination as NRA’s president. The reason circulating the internet: LaPierre claimed North was trying to blackmail him into retirement. The NRA promptly sued North earlier this month, claiming he had attempted a coup to remove LaPierre.
Additional inner turmoil led to the resignation (firing?) of NRA’s 2nd in charge, Chris Cox, who is also being implicated as being involved in the “alleged” coup. This is bad. Cox has built the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action into a lobbying powerhouse. Most pro-gun legislative victories were a direct result of NRA-ILA. No one can possibly know what the ramifications of Cox’s departure will be for the NRA – and for gun rights.
The National Rifle Association also announced recently the shuttering of NRATV. This is somewhat understandable as it was created through their partnership with Ackerman McQueen. But the content associated with NRATV: Cam & Company, Love at First Shot, NRA All Access, Dana Loesch and Friends of NRA have provided the NRA a huge PR boost. Grey Beard watched these programs regularly and was always impressed with the depth of the content and the great opinions expressed by its pundits. NRATV was the publicity arm of the association and closing down shop is not good for any Second Amendment supporters.
For those of us on the outside looking in, it would appear that Wayne LaPierre is trying to protect his fiefdom. LaPierre has been instrumental in the growth of the NRA over the past two decades. His leadership has always seemed solid and he proved to be a good spokesman for the association. But he has been tied to some of the scandals – and if not directly – he was in charge when they were all taking place. Some of the more salacious accusations are:
- Lavish spending by LaPierre on clothing and travel
- $1.4 million salary – significantly out-pacing other non-profit CEOs
- Culture of fear within the organization
- Underfunded employee pension (while LaPierre has a golden parachute) – currently running a $41 million deficit
- LaPierre’s alleged affair with intern Megan Allen – which may have resulted in a Beverly Hills shopping spree costing $39,000 (paid for by their ad agency but ultimately by the association) – and the association paying $13,800 for rent for the summer intern
We need the NRA. This is beyond question. But we need a strong association which is laser focused on protecting the Second Amendment. As my friend, Mark Walters, of Armed American Radio, recently stated, “The optics are bad for the NRA.” Your lovable Grey Beard Biker thinks fundamental change at the National Rifle Association is in order. It starts at the top. It’s time for LaPierre to retire and new people – with fresh ideas – to come “right the ship.” What are your thoughts?