I have a very enviable record when it comes to New Year’s resolutions … I haven’t failed at keeping one for several years now, primarily because the last resolution I actually made was to never make another New Year’s resolution. But for those of you out there who do hold on to that tradition, and value their rights to self-defense and possessing firearms, I would like to suggest some possible resolutions you might like to make.
6) Join (or upgrade your membership in) the National Rifle Association: There are few things one can do, as a gun owner, that are as effective in defending our liberty as supporting the NRA. For one hundred and forty-five years now, they’ve been representing the interests of American shooters through education, legislative outreach, and litigation, and the best measure of their effectiveness is the abject hatred those on the Left bear for the organization. Obama blames them for every instance of violence committed in this country, Hillary regards them as her mortal enemies, and most of the Democrats in Congress place them somewhere between La Cosa Nostra and the Nazi party in terms of favorability.
Beyond the need to support the NRA’s efforts to elect officials who’ll stand up for our 2A freedoms, their work to defeat antigun legislation on the local, state, and national level, and the organization’s mandate to challenge unconstitutional attempts to deprive Americans of their 2A rights in court, membership comes with a benefits package that makes it a worthwhile investment for any gun owner, or anyone who cares about individual liberty. There are other organizations to which one might belong in furtherance of their 2A rights, but none can boast the record of accomplishment of the NRA.
5) Develop your Skills: Making the decision to accept the responsibility of carrying a weapon is just the first step one takes on the path to becoming competent in the use of arms. Shooting a firearm isn’t an instinctive or natural action; it requires training and practice to develop proficiency at the task. Training from a skilled instructor, to lay the correct foundation upon which to build our own skill-set, and practice to ingrain those skills into our muscle memory. Each is of limited usefulness without the other; together, they can transform one from a person with a weapon into a person who is a weapon.
4) Always be Ready: All the skill in the world won’t make a difference if, when trouble happens, you’re caught unprepared. I know this is a frequent theme in this column, but it bears repeating … the first rule of surviving a gunfight is to Have a Gun!
3) Be a Positive Example: As gun owners, it falls upon us to remember that the media is not our friend, and they paint a picture of us for the public that is unflattering in the extreme. In the eyes of the Mainstream Media, we’re bloodthirsty, violence-crazed, drunken hillbillies, just waiting for an excuse to blow some poor, good-hearted miscreant away. We have a responsibility to be good ambassadors for the use of arms, as well as role models and mentors for those new to firearms. As such, we need to be knowledgeable, safe, and proficient, and willing to pass on both our years of experience as well as our love of shooting.
2) VOTE: Over the last four presidential elections, an average of 58.6% of eligible voters took part in the process, and that’s not likely to change to any significant degree this election cycle. That means that every voter has more of an impact on the process than would be the case with a higher rate of voter participation. Should Conservatives once again throw a tantrum and stay home as they did in 2012, the consequences for this nation would be catastrophic. I’m the first to admit that Mitt Romney was hardly the best choice the Republican Party could’ve made for a nominee; it’s damn certain, however, that he was a better choice than his opponent in the general election. Don’t let the lack of a perfect candidate stop you from supporting the best available candidate.
1) Exercise your 2A Rights—BUY A GUN: It doesn’t matter what brand you choose, or whether it’s a handgun, shotgun, or rifle. The best way to affirm your 2A rights is to go out and vote with your wallet. Buy new, or buy used. Buy a Kel-Tec .380, or a Colt AR-15, a shotgun for winging ducks or one for protecting your family. Buy what fits your budget and your needs … but buy.
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