Article on American Shooter & Hunter Assn
Here's a column in the Ft. Wayne Journal-Gazette touting the American SHA. As I've noted previously (see archives under antigun groups), the group was set up by antigunners to pose as a pro-gun group. As might be expected, the column here furthers that, insisting that it's formed as a moderate group standing between NRA and Brady Campaign.
Wonder where their startup money came from? Read somewhere they started with half a million in the bank. Pretty hard to find that, when you have no members at the outset.
Anyway, the column notes correctly that one founder of the group "co-founded Stop Handgun Violence and is a former board member with the Brady Campaign. " It claims of the other, "Ricker, a former chief lobbyist for the NRA, who in recent years has testified in lawsuits by the NAACP and cities against the gun industry" who "parted company with the NRA because of its all-or-nothing mentality."
Might as well set the record straight. I knew Bob Ricker when he worked for NRA. He wasn't the "chief lobbyist." He was an attorney working under the General Counsel for some short period (maybe a year, my memory is imperfect here). Then he and Richard Feldman formed a group established by the gun manufacturers, and were with that for some years.
You've got to understand that the manufacturers and NRA rarely see eye-to-eye. The Mfrs see things as a business. If a gun law doesn't hurt your profits, no problem. Even a complete ban is OK, so long as it affects someone else's guns (Assault weapons bans are perfectly OK, unless you're Colt ... and even then it just means taking the flash suppressor off, in exchange for your prices skyrocketing). And don't look at the long run! The fiscal year is the question. So the manufacturers' group signed on with a variety of gun legislation and were actively promoting it.
Eventually, NRA brought the mfrs to their senses. I forget whether the group was dissolved, or its leaders fired, but it was one or the other. Ricker was out of a job. He found one testifying as an expert witness for the cities suing the gun manufacturers. And now he's heading up this group. But to describe him as a former chief NRA lobbyist, who parted company over its positions, is creative writing.
[Update: I got an email from someone mentioned here -- unfortunately, I get tons of spam and had their email sender, usa.com or something like that, blocked. The blocked msgs get deleted automatically, so I have no idea of its content. If you'll resend, I've taken that url off the block list).
Now, I understand the press loves it when someone becomes a so-called whistle blower and exposes corruption or whatnot on the other side (as long as its the side the press is against) but why does the NRA give Riker a pass on this?
Seems to me that if he once worked in the general counsel's office then the bar would have something to say about him switching sides.
Posted by: countertop at June 25, 2006 11:06 PM
Never heard the gun market and NRA explained like that before, at least together, it seems much clearer to me now. Most of the pro gun guys I talk to are having a hard time trusting the NRA today. I haven't heard much good about the NRA lately.
But you are absolutely dead on about the AHSA, how disingenuous can they be, it's borderline fraudulent considering the donations they must get from red-state hunters.
And thanks for the link.
Posted by: Stan at June 28, 2006 12:09 AM