I have a shotgun and and a .22 semi-automatic that are both over 60 years old, that makes me a gun owner. I also have a 19th century 45.70 caliber US Army Infantry single shot rifle. What I'm not is a "gun nut!"
The number of gun owners is dropping in the US, but gun sales and going up. How does that even happen? The reason, "gun nuts" are buying more and more guns. I guess at one time the NRA represented hunters, skeet, trap shooters and folks who liked to shoot targets. Not so much anymore. If you take a look at The National Rifleman published by the NRA, either in print or on line what you see are articles, tests and advertising for assault and military style weapons and gear. Very few hunting or sport weapons are featured. In the latest on line issue there is an article about a "tactical neck knife" that you wear on a lanyard around your neck. I didn't count the number of times I saw the word tactical, but it seemed that a high percentage of the products tested and advertised were tactical.
You don't hunt big game or ducks with tactical assault weapons, you have a hard enough time shooting a goose with a shotgun with some range much less a shotgun with a barrel that is a millimeter over the legal length!
Ronnie Barrett is an NRA Board Member. Ronnie manufactures the Barrett .50 caliber sniper rifle.
The military of many countries buy the Barrett and they are used by our snipers. The record kill using a Barrett happened this year in Afghanistan was just over 1.7 miles away by an Australian sniper. Hell of a shot. You can buy a Barrett from Ronnie anytime you'd like, they run about 10k and add the scope for another 4k and you've got a weapon that can fire a round through a 1/2 inch of steel plate from 500 yards, a weapon that will disintegrate a human body from a mile away, a weapon that scares the living shit out of law enforcement and it's legal to buy. A note on the Barrett from Wikipedia:
The M82A1 is known by the US military as the SASR—"Special Applications Scoped Rifle", and it was and still is used as an anti-materiel rifle and explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) tool. The long effective range, over 1,800 metres (5,900 ft) (1.1 miles), along with high energy and availability of highly effective ammunition such as API and Raufoss Mk 211, allows for effective operations against targets like radar cabins, trucks, parked aircraft and the like. The M82 can also be used to defeat human targets from standoff range or against targets behind cover. However, anti-personnel use is not a major application for the M82 (or any other .50 BMG rifle, for that matter). There is a widespread misconception that a number of treaties have banned use of the .50 BMG against human targets. However, the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's office has issued a legal opinion that the .50 BMG and even the Raufoss Mk 211 round are legal for use against enemy personnel.
You can buy explosive rounds for the Barrett as well, some legal, some illegal but they are out there, cool, huh? Your deer, dressed and cooked with one round.
Gun nuts have clubs, Check out the one in Scottsdale:
Here are some Patriotic NRA members having a meeting:
A friend of mine and I were backpacking in the Sangre de Christos in Colorado and hiked right through a militia camp. My pal, a former Infantry Sgt in Viet Nam, told them they better "Tighten up their perimeter."
In the world of the Gun Nut, its all about the marketing! (and knowing your market)
The Sandy Hook School shooter carried a Bushmaster .223 semi automatic with 30 round magazines and a couple of semi-automatic pistols belonging to his mom. He used the Bushmaster to kill the teachers and kids and a pistol on himself. His Mom was a "gun enthusiast", Lanza shot her 4 times in the face! So much for a gun making you safe in your home. And so much for Nancy Lanza being a responsible gun owner!
While the million dollar a year NRA guy Wayne LaPierre was making his speech laying the blame on everything but guns, there was a shoot out in Pennsylvania, 4 killed and a cop was wounded.
While LaPierre was lobbying for a cop in every school, he forgot to mention there was an armed cop at Columbine High School.
Years ago I had my Springfield Amory 45.70 evaluated for insurance purposes, the gun shop I went to looked like a Special Ops supply room. Almost everything they sold was 'tactical" from
guns and knives to clothing. Creepy as hell.
The NRA is a lobbying organization for gun manufacturers. Guns don't wear out. If you buy a fine deer rifle from Sako, the chances are good it will still be in your family 100 years from now. The only market left for gun makers are the idiots who'll pay $2,400. for a Bushmaster! Idiots who are paranoid and frightened.
A guy in northern Indiana last week was arrested for making threats about shooting up a school. The cops found $100,000 in ammunition in his house. The guy barely had a pot to piss in, but he spent a 100k on ammo.