The National Rifle Association (NRA) has an interesting origin story that is basically 180 degrees from its current incarnation.
We should begin by acknowledging that the current NRA is basically a slush-fund non-profit organization of white supremacists in America who export death for profit, as Hasan Manaj masterfully explains:
What Hasan misses in his segment, is the obvious ties to history. For example, a move by the current US regime leader to overturn a humanitarian rule that was meant to limit exports to regimes that violate human rights…that’s a straight repeat of what Reagan did in 1981.
In case you missed it, I wrote about this in a post called “RONALD REAGAN’S ‘SPECIAL UNIT’ SOLDIER SENTENCED TO 5,160 YEARS IN JAIL FOR MASS MURDER”
Two months after news of the massacre Reagan un-blocked $3.2 million in military support to Guatemala’s army. The unblocking method used was crafty, as Reagan reclassified trucks and jeeps to transport Guatemalan soldiers to commit massacres. Military vehicles known to be used in the massacres no longer were under the human rights embargo.
Here’s another way to look at it.
We can tell a modern story about American gun manufacturers accelerating the destruction of endangered wildlife as they are secretly arming poachers today.
…precipitous decline in the worldwide rhino population from 500,000 in the early 20th century to fewer than 30,000 today, with the vast majority in South Africa.
A 2015 report by Small Arms Survey, a Switzerland-based research group, showed that the free flow of high-powered rifles and other weapons in Africa has significantly increased the scale of poaching. In turn, that has bolstered the illicit arms trade.
CZ and its American subsidiary, at a minimum, knew that the weapons it was selling were being used for poaching,” Ms. Austin said in an interview. “They knew and continued to look the other way as dozens, perhaps hundreds, of their weapons continued to show up in the hands of poachers.”
Or we can tell a very similar story about American history, where gun manufacturers accelerating civil wars in southern Africa, stoked by white supremacists who wanted to destabilize their neighboring states.
Note a buried detail in a 1996 news story about clandestine arms deals during apartheid:
The US indictment claims that Armscor, set up in 1977 to circumvent the United Nation’s arms embargo against South Africa and wholly owned by the South African government, smuggled military technology from the US in the late 1980s…South African ministers have threatened to reveal details of clandestine deals between the US and previous South African governments if the US does not drop the Armscor case
The episode by Hasan talks about America flooding Mexico with guns, and how the NRA strongly opposes the United Nation’s ability to embargo arms. Yet it doesn’t bring any history into the mix. I mean Oliver North is in the story and Iran-Contra gun smuggling isn’t even mentioned!
Seems like past events would help provide a lot of context for NRA positions today, especially given what we know today about past financial industry ties to the gun industry.
And now I’d like to end by pointing out what the NRA really was created for and meant to do. I never see this anywhere, so I may as well post it here.
NRA was founded 1871 to better prepare American freemen (e.g. emancipated slaves) for defense of their nation against rebellion (e.g. white supremacists).
From the start the NRA was “a quasi-governmental organization…a roster of Union commanders” who probably today are rolling in their grave because of what the NRA has become.
It was generally thought (pun intended) after the end of the Civil War that black men needed training with rifles to defend the country, and by that I mean defend themselves, families and their communities from terrorists. US General Shaler had noticed that on average it took nearly 1K rifle shots to stop each enemy soldier.
I think a lot of people have completely forgotten what made 1871 such a pivotal time for NRA establishment: blacks were defending themselves against active KKK mobs trying to perpetuate the Civil War through terror campaigns.
In other words, when talking about 1871 as a start date, “the situation shifted” for rifles in America because a pro-government black-lives-matter organization was founded and called the NRA.
This might seem crazy until you realize a man named Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III (Jefferson and Beauregard were the failed leaders of pro-slavery rebellion) in modern times was appointed to head the DoJ, an agency created in 1870 by President Grant to fight the KKK.
It perhaps makes sense then that if the DoJ has become led by a third-generation Jefferson Beauregard…the NRA too now would be flipped and led by white supremacists. But that shouldn’t obscure the true civil rights origins of either NRA or DoJ.