Their executive vice president, Wayne LaPierre, was chosen along with former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum to accompany the Veep on an exclusive hunting trip (no accident jokes please) to Rolling Rock Club, PA earlier this month.
(Unlike Cheney's previous Rolling Rock Club trip when his party killed 417 hand raised birds, Cheney 70 --"kind of like how Tyson's and Pilgrim's Pride and other people do it" observed participant U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) --no body count was given this time.)
States have not appeared to snap out of their NRA thrall despite big Democratic gains at the polls (hey guys: it's safe to come out now) and no major gun legislation is underway.
In Washington state where 12 Seattle shootings--7 deaths--and the shooting death of a Tacoma high school student have occurred in less than a year, Seattle's Mayor Greg Nickels and Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske still can't get state legislators to regulate the sale and storage of guns. ("It would be easier to pass a gay marriage bill," says incoming Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle).
Chicago's Mayor Richard Daley and New York City's Michael Bloomberg face similar state stonewalling.
And in Ohio where the NRA earlier pulled its convention to protest restrictive gun legislation, the legislature overturned former Gov. Bob Taft's veto of a bill that would disallow municipalities' home rule laws to pre-empt looser state gun laws effectively legalizing assault and concealed weapons in urban areas including near schools or parks.
Efforts to lose the NRA's white-males-on-Viagra image by recruiting young people and women have been successful with the NRA offering the first ever African safaris for women (Hey ladies: Would you like to shoot your very own zebra? Rhino?) as well as opps to kill bison, elk, boars, antelope, wild turkey and whitetails here at home.
And the press hasn't even asked what role the NRA's restraining order to keep New Orleans law enforcement officers from confiscating firearms after Hurricane Katrina played in helped the murder rate grow to 162 murders in 2006--8 by Jan 8 in 2007-- forcing Governor Kathleen Blanco to call up the National Guard.
But instead of dancing in the aisles--okay aisle--the NRA has put new enemies in its scopes.
Like the American Hunters and Shooters Association (AHSA) which dares to bill itself as an "NRA with a conscience." (Unlike the NRA, we "support law enforcement and common-sense gun policies that reduce easy gun access to criminals," says cofounder John Rosenthal, as well as "habitat conservation on public lands.")
In November, the NRA got Missouri radio stations to shut down AHSA advertisements that "contained egregiously false and misleading statements regarding the NRA." Did the spots mention LaPierre's $900,000 salary? Or the failed boycott against ConocoPhillips over loaded guns in employee cars? We'll never know.
And--most of the rest of the world including the New Orleans police, the United Nations, animal rights activists, illegal aliens, Katie Couric, Rosie O'Donnell, George Soros, Michael Moore, Nancy Pelosi, Sens. John Kerry, Edward M. Kennedy, Hillary Clinton, Dianne Feinstein and York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg in its new brochure, Freedom in Peril.
Leaked to the Internet in December, the 27 page Freedom in Peril contains allegations so paranoid--"Second Amendment freedom stands naked in the path of a marching axis of adversaries far darker and more dangerous than gun owners have ever known. Acting alone and in shadowy coalitions, these enemies of freedom are preparing for a profound and foreboding confrontation--and 8th grade style "I-hate-the-teacher" drawings so loopy, many thought it was a spoof or hoax.
George Soros is called "the Hungarian-born billionaire bankroller of a globalist jihad against firearm freedom" who has been "trying to revoke the Bill of Rights through his checkbook."
Illustrations show "hairy-legged female animal-rights activists marching alongside snarling dogs and scowling pigs," says ABC News' Marcus Baram, armed gangs invading homes and flashing gang signs and the press depicted as "a giant malevolent head and a vulture clutching a microphone."
But when asked if Freedom in Peril were real, NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said yes but it was a first draft and stolen.
Kind of like the laws the NRA has pushed through.