More on the NRA

Below is Pat Wray's response to NRA sycophant Dave Workman. If you want to read Workman’s screed, here’s the link: Click Here Dave Workman, editor of Gunweek.com, sent me a copy of the NRA's attack-response to my recent columns about them and their manipulation of hunters. He asked if I wanted to respond. I have pasted my response below. Dave: The NRA’s response to my recent columns is as disappointing as it is unsurprising. Disappointing because the NRA continues to trumpet their work on issues like dove hunts, Sunday hunting and hunting license ages, all the while actively campaigning for the opening of 58.5 million acres of Inventoried Roadless Areas to exploitation, an action that will cripple hunting opportunities for our children and grandchildren. They are beating very small drums loudly, in hopes we won’t notice while they sell out our hunting heritage. Disappointing because the NRA is presenting their support of building roads in roadless areas as though it will be good for hunting, when in fact, scientific evidence has repeatedly proven traffic on active roads diminishes big game health, productivity and survival. Disappointing because the NRA leadership knows the biological implications of their actions. They know they are advocating something that will hurt hunters…and yet they are doing it anyway. Unsurprising because the NRA’s response to my columns falls back on their tried and true, formulaic response to any threat: blow smoke, make it personal and create enemies. Blow smoke: “We help…we are working…we support….” When closely examined, the NRA’s efforts on behalf of hunters are empty, chosen more for their visibility than their impact. Make it personal: “The average American hunter hunts close to home…” True enough, but average American hunters don’t need to drive to their tree stands. Average American hunters want to save some space where the animals are bigger, more numerous and healthier than in the places they can already drive. Average American hunters are smarter than the NRA thinks they are and they’re beginning to realize how badly the NRA has misled and mistreated them. Create enemies: “Wray wants to ensure that the best hunting is accessible only to him…” This is a classic NRA move; cast anyone who disagrees with them as an enemy; paint him as an elitist who cares nothing for the common man. It would be laughable, if it hadn’t been effective so many times. The truth is, I work for a living, own no horses or mules and have never been able to afford a guided trip or even a hunt on a bird preserve. I hunt almost totally on public land and, like most experienced hunters, actively seek out areas without roads or much human activity, so I can get away from the crowds and get into more and better animals. The NRA’s attempt to paint me as a hunting elitist is not just inaccurate, it is dishonest. They know better. Here’s what is boils down to. The NRA is taking actions that will diminish hunting opportunities for generations to come. It is trading our hunting heritage for votes in its fight for gun ownership rights. The NRA is in an impossible conflict of interest and cannot work on behalf of hunters and hunting while in bed with politicians to whom the wild lands are nothing but a place from which to extract money. Bottom line: The NRA does not represent or work for hunters and is dishonest when it says it does. It’s time the NRA went back to its roots and divested itself of American Hunter magazine and its other hunting-related publications. The NRA should focus its energies on the 2nd Amendment and on gun ownership issues and leave our hunting heritage to people who really care about it, and don’t just mine it for their separate purposes. The NRA should start by being honest. The change will do them good.