United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Second Amendment supporters are going to have a decision to make over the next few years. They can either take advantage of an opportunity to make life extremely difficult for anti-Second Amendment extremists, or they can find themselves fighting a much harder battle over the long term.
Gun culture and America have changed over the years. Hunters and sport shooters are not the only game in town anymore. Many who own guns – and who make the decision to become gun owners – are choosing to do so for personal protection, and those issues have moved more to the forefront over the years as the awareness of gun owners has increased.
As correctly noted elsewhere on Ammoland, the expansion of concealed carry permits and gun ownership is not a guarantee of future security for the rights protected by the Second Amendment.
That being said, this wave of new gun ownership is an immense opportunity, one that can be seized by learning the lessons of the 2020 and 2021 elections.
Think about it. What does any new firearms owner need? Two of the first things that come to mind would be training in how to use it safely and a place where they could safely practice. Imagine if a local FFL – even your local Walmart or big-box store – were to have a list of instructors and a list of shooting ranges available for those buying new guns. The best part is, no politics would be necessary in those fliers. In fact, just leave politics out of that list.
If your child were interested in figure skating, hockey, baseball, or some sport, you’d do no different. If you wanted to start golf, you wouldn’t just get a set of golf clubs, you’d also get lessons at a local country club. You’d be looking not just for a good instructor, but a place to practice, and you’d hope that those who are already involved would help you along.
First-time gun owners have the same needs. Therefore, when it comes to first-time gun owners, the first step Second Amendment supporters should take is to help them get the training and practice they need to become truly responsible gun owners as opposed to the faux responsibility pushed by anti-Second Amendment groups. Along the way, that first-time gun owner should be getting an inkling that the Bloomberg-Brady-Giffords axis of anti-Second Amendment extremism has not been truthful.
In addition, those who get the training and who spend the time practicing at the range will end up having a lot more skin in the game than if they had just bought the gun and were left to their own devices. In addition, they will know a lot of other gun owners who take their rights – and the responsibilities that go with them – seriously.
That will make them realize that the Bloomberg-Brady-Giffords axis of anti-Second Amendment extremism is lying to them and about them, and in the process, a new Second Amendment supporter will be minted. Now is the time to provide them with the facts and tools necessary to become Second Amendment activists.
Follow the example of Glenn Youngkin’s campaign team and translate the materials. Push pro-Second Amendment groups like the NRA, GOA, SAF, and Firearms Policy Coalition as well as state-level affiliates to do the same. We lose nothing by making the effort to reach out to new gun owners. If anything, not making that effort, as Wayne LaPierre has failed to do over the last two decades, would be a massive blunder.
Think of it this way: Even if we only turn three percent of what the NSSF estimates is 5.4 million new gun owners in 2021 into Second Amendment activists, we become that much stronger.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.