Raise Questions

To raise a question: vb. to put forward for consideration

Tag: America

My Cat’s NRA Membership Card

My Cat's NRA Membership Card

O’Ryan the Cat was officially welcomed today as a member of the NRA by receiving his NRA membership card. He was also invited to apply for the NRA Outstanding Achievement Youth Award and to participate in Basic Firearm Training Courses, Marksmanship Qualification Programs, NRA Shooting Sports Camp, Competitive Shooting Programs, and the NRA’s Youth Hunter Challenge Courses. Unfortunately since he doesn’t have opposable thumbs he will have to pass on those opportunities.


My Cat is a Member of the NRA


What does America know about the membership base of the National Rifle Association?  As Americans are reminded that the NRA’s membership is growing and are told that this is proof that voters don’t want gun restrictions, do we know if NRA members are of voting age, citizens, reside in the United States, or are even human?

A visit to the membership application on the NRA’s website shows that membership is open to children and foreign applicants.  Their membership application also doesn’t request a social security number of other proof of citizenship.   In fact, membership appears to be open to anyone who has an American Express, Visa, Mastercard, or Discover Card and as little as $15 of available credit.  As proof of this I registered my cat, O’Ryan for membership in the NRA today.  He received the following e-mail from the NRA in response:

Dear O’Ryan,

Thank you for joining the NRA.  We appreciate your interest in protecting and preserving our Second Amendment rights and promoting safe, responsible gun ownership.

Your credit card will be billed for $15.00* for a 1 Year Junior Membership in the National Rifle Association with “Insights Magazine” as your magazine choice.

If you have any questions regarding your order, please email us at membership@nrahq.org.  Or you may call our Toll Free Membership Account Information Hotline at 1-877-NRA-2000.

Thanks again for your interest in the National Rifle Association!

NRA Membership Services

Any attempts by the press to verify the demographics of members of the NRA has been met repeatedly with citations by the NRA that their membership list is sacred and falls within the realm of “trust but don’t expect us to verify.”

Indeed, the NRA expects the American people to trust that they have a membership base of 4.25 million people and that this base has grown by 250,000 in the month since the Sandy Hook shootings.  They also expect the American people to trust that these members represent US Citizens of voting age.  I suppose if you believe that my cat has a strong view on gun rights then you might also believe that the NRA’s membership base is entirely legitimate.  However, I assure you that O’Ryan’s only interest is in when he will be served his next bowl of cat food.

How many other members of the NRA are children, pets, or even foreign nationals?  When will the American people demand to know more about the group that is driving American policy?

Why 1971 Matters to Illegal Immigrants

When President Nixon declared the War on Drugs in 1971 did he also trigger an increase in illegal immigration?  Will solving America’s immigration crisis also require declaring an end to the War on Drugs?

In October 1970, Congress passed the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970.  Shortly thereafter, in 1971, President Nixon declared the “War on Drugs”.  Virtually overnight the government was given a legal foundation from which to fight against drug abuse and to categorize substances.  The DEA gained a new realm of investigatory powers and the National Institute on Drug Abuse was formed.

However, the War on Drugs did not eliminate the market for drugs within the United States.  Today 46% of adults say that they have tried drugs and 60 million specifically admit to having used Marijuana.  But, with the DEA hard at work destroying Marijuana crops and other drug manufacturing facilities, a demand was created for imported drugs.  But, how might these drugs be being imported when doing so is illegal?

Between 1969 and 2009 the population of illegal immigrants who traveled from Mexico to the US rose from 540,000 to 11,100,000.  This means that in 1960 only 0.3% of the US population was undocumented, but by 2009 3.6% were.  What also grew during these years were Mexico’s drug cartels, and despite declining economic conditions in Mexico their financial status has continued to flourish.  Reports show that the Mexican drug cartel has created much of that fortune by moving drugs into the US strapped to the backs of illegal immigrants who have agreed to smuggle in exchange for free or reduced cost of passage into the US.  Some illegal immigrants have reported that they didn’t want to smuggle but were told by the cartel that they would be killed if they refused.

In 2011, US Border Patrol seized 158 tons of illegal drugs moving into the US.  They also stopped 100,000 individuals trying to cross the border.  However, the demand for drugs continues to rise within the United States and few will argue that the War on Drugs has not been lost.  But, can the government now cut their losses and mitigate the immigration crisis by formally ending the drug war?