A Personal Message from Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation
BELLEVUE, WA –-(Ammoland.com)- I am running, along with four other well-known leaders in the firearms community, for a position on the Washington Arms Collectors Board of Directors.
Those of you who are WAC members will easily recognize the names Kirby Wilbur, Dave Workman, Bill Burris and Rick Verzal.
I encourage WAC members to vote for these gentlemen, and I ask for your support as well. We need to restore responsibility and accountability so that WAC can continue – as all productive grassroots organizations strive – to protect and perpetuate gun rights and the American firearms tradition for generations to come.
I have long believed that grassroots activism is the life’s blood and backbone of the firearms civil rights movement. Therefore, I am practicing what I preach, and I urge you to get involved with your state associations and local grassroots organizations.
Without involvement in state and even local organizations, American gun owners would be disorganized, ineffective and unable to protect the civil rights they hold so dear.
Only by working with other gun owners, standing shoulder-to-shoulder in defense of the Second Amendment and our state constitutional right to keep and bear arms provisions have we been successful, and will continue our successes.
United, there is nothing that the firearms community cannot accomplish, as we have demonstrated so many times. In 1994, we changed the face of Congress and many state legislatures, replacing Beltway anti-gunners with pro-civil rights representatives who put the brakes on the runaway Clinton gun control juggernaut.
Working together, we held Congress for more than a decade, during which we elected a pro-gun President who gave us the Supreme Court majority that, in turn, handed down two monumental Second Amendment rulings.
I am personally proud that the Second Amendment Foundation is responsible for one of those cases, McDonald v. City of Chicago, the case that incorporated the Second Amendment to the states. But that case involved a grassroots organization, the Illinois State Rifle Association, and we were proud to have them onboard.
Likewise, in our current lawsuit against an onerous emergency powers statute in North Carolina, we are working with Grassroots North Carolina. In our lawsuit in New Jersey, we are partnered with the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs. In Maryland and New York we have gotten key support from grassroots groups: Maryland Shall Issue, and New York’s Shooters Committee On Political Education and Long Island Firearms.
In our lawsuit to prevent the City of Seattle from enforcing an illegal gun ban in city parks, one of the groups that joined the action was the Washington Arms Collectors. This 14,000-member association of firearms enthusiasts, competition shooters, hunters, historical re-enactors and recreational shooters epitomizes the diversity found within the broad firearms community, and I am proud to be a life member.
Whether at the national, state or local level, devoted firearms advocates and gun rights activists recognize that our greatest challenge is the unrelenting campaign to destroy our Second Amendment rights. But there is another enemy, just as insidious, that can destroy our movement from within, through rancor and disharmony.
When people substitute divisiveness and demagoguery for healthy debate, when they replace collegial cooperation with confrontation and character assassination, when their actions and behavior threaten to derail the positive forward momentum we all strive for, and when they allow personal grievances to overshadow common sense, those who understand the difference between personal agendas and public good must take corrective measures.
We have all seen, at one time or another, productive and energetic organizations become mired in personal politics. It is never pleasant when it happens, but allowing such self-destructive activity to continue would have an even more unpleasant result.
I have never been one to tell people to practice what I preach, while being unwilling to roll up my sleeves and step up to the plate, myself.
And right now seems the perfect time to prove that. The Washington Arms Collectors is suffering from a “war within.” The Board of Directors is in conflict, and in danger of running aground at a time when such organizations will be critically important, not just to local gun rights issues, but nationally.
As a life member of that organization, I cannot stand by while others give their time and energy to stop what amounts to an out-of-control cabal.
Alan Gottlieb's signature
Alan M. Gottlieb
Second Amendment Foundation