Refuse to Compromise... No Matter What

SHOT Show 2019 is in the books. We are back and are still recovering, but we sure did see a bunch of new guns, ammo, optics, and more. If you missed our live video feeds from the show, you can catch them now. CLICK HERE. We showcased a lot of introductions and revealed the “how did you come up with THAT!” stories.

Several stories on gun rights were breaking during the show, and a quiet undercurrent burbled through the tens of thousands attending the crowd. For big news, it’s hard to top the exciting development that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear its first gun rights case in almost a decade. This is a challenge to the New York City law, which prohibits residents with pistol permits from taking their guns from their homes unless they are going to designated places — shooting ranges inside the city, for instance. Making it illegal to take your gun from one home to another, or take it out of the state, clearly violates the right to “keep and bear arms” in the Second Amendment.

The undercurrent I’m hearing everywhere is a dissatisfaction with the NRA among gun owners. Whether it’s a dislike of the refusecurrent leadership, the massive group’s public approach to issues, or a perceived (though perhaps not warranted) willingness from this first-and-largest gun rights group to compromise on rights, I’m hearing a lot of people who are unwilling to join, or renew, and are looking for alternatives. 

The Second Amendment Foundation ( currently involved in 35 lawsuits challenging national, state and even local restrictions on gun rights. SAF seems, to me, to be a small-but-mighty fighter who punches above its weight class and gets things done.

The Firearms Policy Coalition ( may be relatively new, but it is headed by some experienced hands in the fight, and it’s making waves. I think this is an important group worthy of support.

I would, however, like to offer this thought, even though I know from decades of trying to explain it that it often falls on deaf ears. Sometimes the NRA is just flat wrong. But … sometimes it is engaged in a more sophisticated fight than is appreciated by members and gun owners. A case in point. I’ve seen times when the NRA would “support” a terrible gun control bill, enraging the members. What was really going on, though, is that lobbyists knew that there was a “moderate” bill in the wings and that it had a chance of passage, when the more extreme bill was doomed. By “supporting” a nasty bill, and making that one the option being considered, it killed off any chance of any gun bill passing. I’m not saying that’s what’s going on right now, but I throw this out just as a head’s up that sometimes things are not what they seem.

Then again, sometimes folks in Washington have been there so long they see getting to a compromise as a success. Sorry, but I’m not compromising on any gun restrictions — period. If it helps explain my “no compromise” stand, maybe it would be better to call it “Never Again.”

From Berlin on January 6th, 1942: “The German military commander for Belgium and Northern France announced yesterday that the population would be given a last opportunity to surrender firearms without penalty up to January 20th and after that date, anyone found in possession of arms would be executed.”

You may also want to read Neal Knox’s excellent piece “The Belgian Corporal” for a serious look at how gun control really works. It’s the true story of “Turn in your guns or we will pull you from your home and murder you in front of your neighbors.” READ HERE ~ Tom

Tom Gresham
Author, outdoorsman, gun rights activist, and firearms enthusiast for more than five decades, Tom Gresham hosts Tom Gresham's Gun Talk, the first nationally-syndicated radio show about guns and the shooting sports, and is also the producer and co-host of the Guns & Gear, GunVenture and First Person Defender television series.

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