That's a good question. I hear mixed reviews about wha the NRA does for those who like the assault type weapons. I wish I knew who was indeed working to help us out. I donate money to them here and there, though. ???
I've never been hunting, don't own a single bolt rifle, etc. Not that I wouldn't be interested in doing either; just haven't got around to it yet.
I spend money (what is, for me, considerable money) with companies that support the kind of shooting that I like to do. I trust that they lobby on my behalf.
I guess I should still be an NRA member, but that membership due is absolutely nothing compared with the money I spend on gear, with companies I like. I imagine that in the grand scheme, I'm doing my part and then some. It is the occasional shooter/once a year hunter that we really need to motivate... somehow.
As with any large organization the bureaucracy always gets in the way of things (and they all want to get paid too...) I think that for the amount of money that they raise they could do a lot more.
I've never seen an NRA TV ad for example. Most people today believe banning guns makes them safer.
They should fire all the bureaucrats and instead hire some innovative, high profile PR firm to promote the fact that places with lax gun laws are actually safer. We need new and more effective ways to educate people about gun ownership. I don't think the NRA is doing it.
I'm a voting member, have been for a while now. I don't remember the exact year I joined, it may say on my card though.
I renew every year, and do the NRA roundup where available.
Yes, they send out too much crap snail mail and I think the money wasted there would be better spent elsewhere.
Also, this last time, they were waaaay to eager to compromise after the Virginia Tech shootings.
I'm disappointed with all the fudds they have, they need new life. I think, the NRA management is too concerned with hunting issues and ignores the shooting sports.
They really need to actively recruit new membership outside the norm. I fit the norm to a T.
But the NRA management always kind of skate around this issue. I think it'd be a better/stronger organization if they actively recruited women, minorities, young folks, etc.
They try, but not very hard I think. They programs offered just aren't a a good draw for shooting sports. They have some women's orgs, Eddie the Eagle for child gun safety, etc.
I think they should do away with all the wasted paper mailings trying to get you to always renew membership before it's time to renew and instead sponsor shoots all over the country with this money with give-a-ways.
I mean, you only see a few shoots, in a few places in the American Rifleman and American Hunter magazines every month or so. Most of the shoots in my region are hours and hours away. I mean, in Texas, another city can be easily 4-8 hours away and I live in a major metropolitan area.
Seems, the NRA is too concerned with spending money trying to re-sign its membership from folks like me who always renew membership and they don't do anything to try to recruit new members from other demographics. I don't see a lot of 18 year old's or 60-ish minority women being targeted for membership.
In the long run, the NRA had better broaden it's membership to become stronger.
My Dad bought me a Life Membership in 1960. I used to be into Class III Competive shooting but not anymore. The NRA "sold out" the class 3 shooter's/owners as far as I am concerned. They do a lot of good, BUT they have some serious issues. Probably if it comes to it, they would sell us out push come to shove.
I (re-joined) the NRA after a ten year lapse, because like stated previously, some ranges insist you be a member to shoot or they give a discount to NRA members.
About 2 months after I joined, I remembered why I dropped out the first time...
Its the relentless mail and BS you receive...
Dammit, I support the Second Amendment, I am a responsible shooter, I practice what I preach, I vote for pro-gun politicians (those that prove themselves) and I donate WHEN I CAN to NRA drives. I don't need Wayne or anyone else sending me "scare tactic" letters, or coins & videos that cost me just $9.99 for the first one, and $39.99 each one thereafter.
If I wanted a hat, or a shirt, or a pin, or a bumper sticker, or a coin, or a video, or a fricking pile of paper kindling for my woodstove - I'd ask for it and pay for it.
Don't send me crap I don't want/need/use... and spend that money fighting for our rights!
Yeah, my stamp saves precious resources, blah, blah, blah... but I need to save all the crap they send for a year, pack it up, and drive it down to NRA HQ and let them see what a waste it is.
I'll continue to renew, because I value my freedom (now don't think I'm preachin') - but all I ask is that you PLEASE - PLEASE quit sending me all that crap!
(I did send a similar message to NRA HQ, but never received a response).
Ah... that felt good. Thanks for starting this thread!