NRA Business Disclosures & The Media Spin Machine

Opinion By Marion Hammer
It is reprinted with Permission from Sunshine State News.

Mainstream Media Ban Guns Liars Two Faced Lies Truth
NRA Business Disclosures & The Media Spin Machine

USA – -(AmmoLand.com)- It never ceases to amaze me how quickly people believe distortions printed by the media — particularly in their efforts to help the enemies of freedom and the Second Amendment and to try to destroy the NRA. Nor does it cease to amaze me how willing the media are to deliberately distort and mislead.

The Washington Post used legitimate expense reimbursements and recruiter payments to drive their narrative and pad their numbers to falsely cast aspersions on 18 board members and the NRA (the story can only be found behind the Post's paywall). It is a deliberate distortion and an orchestrated attempt to convey a false impression.

The numbers weren’t extraordinary if one looks at it from a one-year perspective, so the Washington Post lumped three years of reports together to make the amounts look larger and more lucrative. That is the epitome of calculated treachery!

Board members who are NRA recruiters get no special treatment. They, like all recruiters, get the same commission that any recruiter receives. The Washington Post makes it sound like they’re stealing or have some sweetheart deal. [full disclosure AmmoLand News is an NRA recruiter.] Some of these board members use their businesses to recruit members, and they disclose it. Yet the Washington Post attacks them for serving the NRA – and for trying to get more people to sign up as NRA members.

Also included in the scurrilous attack are board-member reimbursements for travel at the NRA's request, for speaking engagements and appearances at events to which the NRA is requested to send a representative. Some board members make these trips and appearances at the NRA’s request because the officers and staff can’t do it all.

In addition to taking off from work and giving their time, perhaps the Post expects board members to pay for airline travel, lodging, meals, and expenses out of their own pockets to travel for the NRA?

Another big fraud by the Washington Post suggests that when the NRA purchases materials, supplies, and services from board members or their businesses, board members are getting rich. Anyone alleging that Hornady or Brownell needs the paltry sums disclosed by the Washington Post clearly has no idea what they’re talking about. What nonsense!

Board members whose companies sell products to the NRA for discounted prices don’t need to do business with the NRA, they have plenty of customers. It’s the NRA that wants to do business with them — for better deals than we can get elsewhere.

Have you been paying attention the New York governor’s attempt to maliciously stop companies from doing business with the NRA?

Since the NRA is under attack — by what has all the earmarkings of a coordinated attack — would you believe that some businesses want to charge the NRA more just to do business with them? Because of this orchestrated attack, some businesses refuse to do any business at all with the NRA.

Yet, the Washington Post wants you to believe that board members somehow have sweetheart deals and try to paint them as engaging in some illegal activity. What bull, the NRA has the sweetheart deal! The NRA and our members benefit from the good deals NRA gets when we use board members.

R. Lee "The Gunny" Ermey
R. Lee “The Gunny” Ermey: For crying out loud, the Washington Post even disparaged a dead man — who has been gone since last April — to pad its numbers!

Heck, the Washington Post even used a deceased board member and friend, R. Lee Ermey, to pad its false narrative. For crying out loud, the Washington Post even disparaged a dead man — who has been gone since last April — to pad its numbers! That is as bad as Joe Biden claiming he just talked to Margaret Thatcher when she actually died three years earlier.

Board members’ legitimate expenses are being made to look sneaky by a publication that has no love for the Second Amendment, or the NRA. Are you going to fall for it? Or are you going to open your eyes and your mind?

Payments to board members are disclosed, in writing, at every NRA Annual Meeting. Stacks of disclosure reports are put on a table along with other financial reports at the Annual Meeting of members and are available to members and the media. These reports are where they got the information they are distorting.

2019 NRA Secretary's Public Report of Payments to NRA Board Members

And, yes — I am on that list. I am proud of my work on behalf of the NRA and the Second Amendment.

I have spent my entire professional life in this arena. For over 40 years, I have been standing on the front line fighting for Right-to-Carry, Castle Doctrine, preemption, and the list of pro-Second Amendment legislation goes on. The list of anti-gun, freedom crippling legislation is even longer. In fact, I was lobbying for the NRA long before I was elected to the Board, and long before I was elected NRA president. There aren’t many states in which I haven’t helped fight for the Second Amendment.

Isn’t it interesting that in this article, the Washington Post points out that there are other non-profit organizations that require their board members to make financial donations to these organizations in order to get on their boards?

In other words, some other non-profit organizations require people to “buy” their seats on their boards. I guess the Washington Post thinks that's OK. But the NRA’s democratically elected board is demonized?

For the past few months, the media have trained their guns on the NRA and those of us within our movement. They are happily doing the bidding of Mike Bloomberg, Andrew Cuomo, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer.

The simple fact is that Second Amendment rights are the only means that citizens have to protect their ability to protect freedom from the enemies of America. Give up that right, and you are no longer free.

If you think the NRA is the only organization they are turning their guns on, just wait … we may be the first, but we won’t be the last. Make no mistake, we are the first because we are the most effective. This is the price the NRA is paying for getting Donald Trump elected and for securing the Supreme Court for a couple of generations.

I believe with all my heart that the freedom we enjoy today depends on the NRA standing guard to protect Second Amendment rights from the enemies of freedom and our Constitution. I want that freedom and those rights for my grandchildren and for yours.

Marion P. Hammer
Marion P. Hammer

 


Marion P. Hammer is a past president of NRA and a member of the NRA Board of Directors.

  • 17 thoughts on “NRA Business Disclosures & The Media Spin Machine

    1. So, we have yet another year with the NRA in deficit. The NRA’s own publications reveal that the NRA spent about $74 million more than it had in the years 2016-2018.

      The NRA had to take out a $28 million line of credit in 2018 by borrowing against the Virginia headquarters, in addition to the $17 million line of credit from 2017 and the freezing of the employee pension plan in 2018 that freed up $13 million.

      Despite taking out such lines of credit, reducing employee benefits, additionally reducing spending on firearms training and education and a reported $42 million increase in revenue from dues and donations, the NRA still spent $423 million of its $412 million 2018 revenue, resulting in a $10.8 million deficit for 2018.

      Right, there is nothing to see here. Move along. It’s all Bloomberg’s and Cuomo’s fault. Keep sending money to the NRA.

    2. Assuming arguendo that this article is precisely true in every respect and it may well be. With a nod to Jeff Knox acknowledging on YouTube that the author and others have done some fine work as well as some work arguably much less fine. Just the same, as with Caesar’s Wife it is not enough that the actions of the NRA insiders and of Ack Mac can be defended; these people should need no defense. I for one, a Benefactor Member, have given thousands to the NRA and I won’t give another penny so long as Marion Hammer and Wayne Lapierre collect more than $1 per year.

    3. Let me digest this article. We have Marion Hammer, a BOD, who bills the organization for her work . What tangible proof is there that she is actually working for the NRA or doing her own business, or setting at home. Who would question a BOD concerning the amount that BOD is charging the organization? This article stinks just like the rest of what the NRA is doing. It is my money and you have no claim to it unless I give it to you. Just a refresher for the NRA.

    4. The situation has little to do with how the NRA squander membership $$$$$$$
      It has more to do with the NRA being complicit in anti 2A rulings and interpretations.
      The “bump stock” episode was the last straw, for me.
      RiP NRA.

    5. Greetings Marion, nice to hear from you but I think you are conflating two issues that maybe we should point out. Yes the NRA is a target as it has been for many years but that isn’t the real reason for all the discontent within the NRA membership. It is my opinion that we the members are tired of being ignored. You and the rest may claim the membership is represented fairly but I and many others disagree. Unable to effect a change there is a growing movement to withhold funds as a statement. It’s just that simple. Unless or until the old guard is replaced many of us are choosing to send our funds to other 2A organizations. All the writing and posturing will reinforce the will of those who are already on your side but it is just noise to the rest of us so, good luck to you, Wayne and the boys. It won’t be the IRS that hobbles that cash cow you’re on, it will be the rank and file membership waving goodbye with our checkbooks. There may be an NRA in the years to come but if there is it will either look and act like a true defender of the Second Amendment and reflect the will of the membership or it will be a mere shell of what it used to be.

    6. This article is reminiscent of the veritable fox in the hen house with chicken feathers in their mouth saying everything is going well. Let’s be honest, the executives of this organization are desperately attempting to justify their plundering of a soon to be once great organization if they don’t make some drastic changes. First, several of the hogs feeding at this trough need to be removed immediately. Next, Wayne LaPierre is NOT worth 5 million dollars a year. What is so bad with making only 1 million dollars a year Wayne? Next, they must stop doing business with board members or their companies. This DOES give the appearance of favoritism, cronyism and “getting their piece of the pie”. Very importantly, they start truly listening to and representing their dues paying members since they are the backbone of this organization. Most important, fervently fight and oppose ANY AND ALL legislation that infringes on our second amendment right. Allowing red flag laws to be implemented ARE an infringement on both our second and fourteenth amendment rights and should NEVER be supported.

      This does not cover everything, but until you “elites” wake up and make some significant changes, you will continue to hemorrhage profusely with additional losses of members to this organization. Pull your heads out of your backsides before you kill this organization and lose it all.

    7. Ms. Hammer, your premise is flawed. NO ONE believes the media vipers. What people believe are long-time members such as myself, who were aware of NRA chicanery, as far back as May 7, 1986, at LEAST, That would be the day that Ray Arnett fired the entire Public Ed division, and invited the serpents from Ak/Mac into the house.

      Most would never believe the media hype, but when long-timers like myself howl, “Well, FINALLY!” THAT gets their attention! The media IS hyping the matter, but like all good lies, it is based in TRUTH. Newbies and fence sitters see how members like myself react, and THAT is why they believe.

      Your house of cards has finally found a stiff breeze.

    8. No doubt the WaPost sensed weakness and chose to attack at that point. What Ms. Hammer didn’t address is the true nature of member’s disgruntlement. Why do we need 72 board members? That is a lot of travel, meals and lodging to pay for. Is paying recruiters for signing up members an outdated model? The fact is, most of the NRA’s wounds are self-inflicted. The leadership has been living an extravagant lifestyle and billing members for their wardrobe on the sly. When the budget got tight, rather than tighten their own spending, they flogged membership for higher dues and more money. Yet, then it comes out that there were issues with billing, and perhaps malfeasance, those same 72 BOD members who were supposed to provide oversight did nothing to explain to membership how they were tightening executive controls, becoming more responsible with the budget, or in fact do anything other than blame outside sources.

      Here is a thought: Make Mr. LaPierre wear the same suits for a year. Take that hidden extra $100k that he was billing via the PR folks and hire an independent auditor to forensically audit the NRA books, then publish the results. It would go a long way towards clearing the mistrust you’ve generated with the membership.

      1. The NRA has 76 Board members. The reason why the number is so high is that it is impossible to create a 2/3 majority of 51 members to do anything against the wishes of the NRA officers, such as firing Wayne LaPierre. The NRA is a broken organization by design! The typical Board size of an organization of the size of the NRA is 9!

        The current NRA leadership will never resign, will never relinquish control to someone else and certainly will never publish audit results. This would open up the current NRA leadership to civil and criminal liability.

        This is going to end badly for all involved!

    9. Another of LaPierre’s toadies doing her best to defend the undefendable. Find a media source that uses false information (these days they all do) and then attack them; easy to do while deflecting any discussion of the real problem. The new strategy of the LaPierre appointed and approved (and no less profitable) administration, appears to be to make sure no one addresses any honest solution to the NRA problems. Defending an Organization that not only fails to do its’ stated purpose adequately, repeatedly, but is run by a corrupt, lying thief (LaPierre) whom you are one of his “chosen few” who carry his water daily is hypocrisy at its highest level. Drain the swamp in Washington and the same kind of swamp that is destroying the NRA from within. We need the NRA, but not the corrupt dishonest individuals who are in charge and are only interested in maintaining their power and money (just like U. S. Congress and the Senate).

    10. What opinion would you expect from someone who has collected hundreds of thousands of dollars from us members, “why the NRA is clean as a whistle”. Nothing to see here, move along.

    11. Why are NRA Board members with the primary task is to provide oversight also paid vendors, contractors, suppliers, speakers, and lobbyists for the same organization? Why would such a paid NRA Board member EVER vote against the wishes of the NRA officers paying him/her? Are these payments used to keep NRA Board members quiet about mismanagement?

      These are very basic conflict of interest questions! There is a reason why organizations try to avoid the mere appearance of conflicts of interest. The NRA has failed in that respect and now needs to deal with the fallout from real or perceived conflicts of interest within the Board. This is mismanagement, followed by damage control. Good luck with that!

      Meanwhile, Marion Hammer has her own issues in Florida, breaking lobbying laws for years. Meanwhile, Willes Lee has completely lost his marbles and calls NRA members that disagree with him NRA haters. Meanwhile, the NRA has issued six subpoenas in its case against Ackerman McQueen. Three of those against NRA Board members and one against Rob Pincus.

      1. Get Out – Exactly right! Comparison of the information clearly presented by Ms. Hammer to the contrived picture manufactured and presented as “journalism” by The Washington Post reveals to all the shallow manipulative intent of TWP’s article.

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