There are lots of guys and a few gals on Youtube that do gun videos, mostly reviewing new firearms and ammunition. Many of them have hundreds of thousands of subscribers. One stands above the rest, literally and figuratively, and that is hickok45. He and his son have been doing videos since 2007 and have a combined 1.2 billion views. He currently sits at 4.2 million subscribers. I am one of those subscribers and usually watch every video. He combines self-deprecating humor with solid information and is a deadly shot for however old he is. He always starts his videos out thanking his sponsors and encouraging everyone to join the National Rifle Association. Then yesterday he posted this video and I hope Wayne LaPierre and the board at the NRA took notice.
The gist of the video is that they will no longer be actively promoting people joining the NRA. While they will remain members and are hoping the NRA straightens itself out, they are not linking their brand with the NRA.
The NRA has around 5 million members. Hickok45 has 4.2 million subscribers. I would bet half or likely much more than half of his subs are already NRA members.
This isn't sniping from the hostile Washington Post who wants to see the NRA fail. This is from a lifelong gun rights advocate who makes a living shooting guns and videoing it. There isn't a bigger advocate for the 2nd Amendment anywhere in public than hickok45. Sure he is "just" a Youtuber but he has a huge audience. As of this morning the video has over 111,000 views and climbing.
The blow-up at the NRA Annual Meeting was just the beginning. Now there are dueling lawsuits and the NRA just suspended their number two guy and chief lobbyist Chris Cox for allegedly being part of the "coup" against Wayne LaPierre.
Like many others, I am coming to the place where we need to clean house at the NRA and do it now. As it stands, Trump is going to have a very difficult path to re-election (see: Do The Math). Without the NRA to rally the troops, it is just going to be harder but it is looking like the NRA is going to be dealing with internal squabbles and fighting off lawsuits instead of advocating for 2A candidates in 2020. Wayne LaPierre has been at the head of the NRA since 1991, when I was a freshman in college. 28 years is a long time and with his compensation package in the millions annually, along with all of the perks he has been using/abusing, I wonder if Wayne is as focused on the mission of the NRA as he should be. He is turning 70 this year and it really is time for him to retire. The same is probably true for most of the NRA board. I understand the value of long-term lobbyists who have all the right contacts and phone numbers but this is approaching crisis mode and it is past time for the NRA to decide if it is in the business of defending the 2A and providing local gun events or is just a huge grift for top level executives and their cronies.
I still support the NRA because they are still the largest gun rights organization out there but I also support the Gun Owners of America. I have no idea who the head of GOA is and that is probably a good thing. If the NRA collapses it will be the greatest victory the Left has had in a very long time and losing an effective NRA would be devastating for gun owners. Every single Democrat running has the same draconian plans for gun ownership. Trump has been a mixed bag on gun rights but at least the NRA has his ear. If any Democrat wins you can expect executive orders immediately to make it harder and harder to buy and even to possess normal firearms. The NRA needs to wake up right now and get their house in order and it is pretty clear that the leadership of the NRA is more interested in defending their own turf and benefits than they are in defending my 2A rights.
The National Rifle Association is not Wayne LaPierre's organization. It isn't Christopher Cox's organization. It isn't the board of directors organization. It is our organization, the five million members who pay the dues that keep this organization running and who show up in November to vote for 2A rights. Somewhere along the way the leadership at the NRA forgot who the NRA is supposed to represent. They better figure it out or they will all be looking for new jobs.