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The PJ Tatler

by
Bryan Preston

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August 21, 2013 - 8:28 am

Perhaps BuzzFeed needs to stick to making cat gifs. When they try real reporting, the outcome can be embarrassing.

WASHINGTON — The National Rifle Association has rallied gun owners — and raised tens of millions of dollars — campaigning against the threat of a national database of firearms or their owners.

But in fact, the sort of vast, secret database the NRA often warns of already exists, despite having been assembled largely without the knowledge or consent of gun owners. It is housed in the Virginia offices of the NRA itself. The country’s largest privately held database of current, former, and prospective gun owners is one of the powerful lobby’s secret weapons, expanding its influence well beyond its estimated 3 million members and bolstering its political supremacy.

That database has been built through years of acquiring gun permit registration lists from state and county offices, gathering names of new owners from the thousands of gun-safety classes taught by NRA-certified instructors and by buying lists of attendees of gun shows, subscribers to gun magazines, and more, BuzzFeed has learned.

Shocking! The National Rifle Association has built a list of people who now own and may in the future own rifles, and other firearms.

Actually, the only shocking thing here is that BuzzFeed had to “learn” this. Anyone with a brain assumed it to be the case. It’s obviously in the NRA’s membership and political interests to know who already owns or may be interested in gun ownership. Its list can also be used defensively, when mainstream media fools react to the actions of madmen by reporting that said madmen had some sort of connection to the NRA. The “connection” usually turns out to be that the madman took an NRA-approved course, not that he was a state chapter president as the media tends to imply.

BuzzFeed would also do well to learn that the NRA is not the government, and its list of gun owners will not be used to violate the Second Amendment, as a national registry of all gun owners surely would.

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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All Comments   (5)
All Comments   (5)
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I knew the NRA had a database of gun owners years ago. I believe the group calls it "Our List of Members."
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
The list of "gun owners" the NRA maintains is no such thing, and would be more or less useless for the purpose of firearms confiscation. I know at least half a dozen people who are more than likely on the list because they took a firearms safety course, or are NRA members, but own no firearms.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
My first reaction to seeing the headline (elsewhere): Of course, the "database" is called "NRA Membership rolls".

What Buzzfeed fails to grasp (or intentionally misleading readers) is that the list in question doesn't matter, it's who maintains it and for what purpose. A private entity using it for marketing is one thing. A government agency using it for law enforcement (or more nefarious purposes, given the IRS scandal) is another thing.

Question to pose back at Buzzfeed: would you be ok with the government maintaining a list of all bloggers to insure nothing hateful is published? How about a list of people who made a petition on WeThePeople.gov?
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Liberals" continually misunderstand the differing concepts of voluntarily doing something (signing up with the NRA, helping the less fortunate) and being forced to do something.

They really don't see a difference.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, they do.

They HATE the things we do voluntarily. Charity? If it's not done under threat of imprisonment or worse, via the government, they don't think it counts. Economic cooperation? Same thing -- by force or it's evil.
47 weeks ago
47 weeks ago Link To Comment
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