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The Rise and Fall of the NRA

It started as a hunting group — but today the NRA is practically unrecognizable from its inception almost 150 years ago.

Student-led Demonstrations Around the U.S. Lead to NRA Financial Free Fall

How did the NRA go from a hunting and shooting group to gaining 5.5 million members millions of dollars in income massive political influence — then an organization in “grave danger?” In 1871 - The National Rifle Association is founded by former Union generals to support hunters, sportsmen, target shooters after the Civil War. 1968 - President Lyndon Johnson signs the Gun Control Act of 1968 regulating the sale of firearms. From 1975 – 1976, After decades as a nonpartisan organization, the NRA establishes a lobbying arm, and a political action committee in part to campaign against gun sale restrictions. 1999 - Fortune Magazine calls the NRA the most powerful lobbying organizationin the United States. April 20, 1999 - A shooting at Columbine High School sparks countrywide debates about gun control. 2016 - The NRA spends over $400 million supporting Donald Trump and other Republican candidates — it’s highest election cycle spending ever.

17 students are killed in a shooting at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. February 17, 2018 Parkland student Emma González becomes an overnight celebrity-activist with her “We Call BS” speech. Over the next few months, the Parkland students build a grassroots campaign against the NRA and in favor of gun control. Over 1 million people attend March For Our Lives — a series of student-led demonstrations around the U.S. protesting gun violence. Months of public pressure lead companies like Avis, Delta, and Fedex to sever their financial ties with the NRA.

The NRA reports losing $55 million in income for the year. A fundraising letter, NRA Chief Executive Wayne Lappierre warns of the group's dire financials. A public feud between NRA president Oliver North and Lappierre leads to North stepping down. New York Attorney General Letitita James launches an investigation into the NRA’s finances. The NRA is forced to shut down its online media arm and an NRA lobbyist reports that the organization is in “grave danger.”

Brut.

07/18/2019 10:20 AM
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38 comments

  • Mike H.
    07/31/2019 23:27

    NRA was not founded as a hunting group. Please do some research.

  • Kenneth R.
    07/31/2019 14:02

    God Bless the NRA!

  • Ronald H.
    07/31/2019 09:11

    When the guns have been banned you will then learn the Democrats were behind these shootings to get gun control and make slaves of the American people...

  • Troy C.
    07/30/2019 23:57

    Wow who put all the false info Into this article? It takes one a few seconds to find out the NRA was not founded for hunting. Just like the constitution and the 2nd amendment isnt about deer rifles. So based on that aspect alone o find any further comments the author makes a waste of time.

  • Brad F.
    07/30/2019 13:54

    Ok however you want it.

  • Martin M.
    07/30/2019 00:39

    The students are not a "grassroots" movement, they are well funded actors for gun-control groups.

  • Derek D.
    07/29/2019 01:01

    There is a lot of liberal butthurt going on in here and I love it!!

  • Alan K.
    07/27/2019 11:56

    Lot of cold, dead and little hands thanks to your NRA, Chariot Boy.

  • Brian H.
    07/27/2019 10:38

    How did a hunting group become Nazis?

  • Keven M.
    07/25/2019 17:28

    Trump 2020 and the 2nd Amendment

  • Brian R.
    07/25/2019 02:20

    Think I'll go join

  • Steven S.
    07/24/2019 23:28

    Go NRA!

  • Joyce H.
    07/24/2019 04:03

    The NRA protects gun rights as it should. Guns do not kill, people do and if they want to kill they will find a way. The fools that want to disarm America need to take a history lesson from Germany leading up to WWII.

  • Oscar L.
    07/23/2019 16:46

    Thank you for reminding me to renew my membership

  • Kirby B.
    07/23/2019 07:21

    Thanks so much for this ad. In the morning I will call the NRA and make a contribution. You just reinforced the reality that freedom is never safe, and some useful idiot will always want to take it away.

  • Clay B.
    07/22/2019 15:00

    Look at Chicago, or Patterson strict gun laws , now check shooting deaths, compared to any state where gun laws are responsible Better idea VOTE THESE DEMOCRATS OUT

  • DaleDawn M.
    07/21/2019 15:30

    Planned parenthood the biggest organized cereal killers in the world and your worried about NRA a privately funded organization that protects you second admindmant. Plan parenthood is payed by the government to kill babies for profit what's wrong with that

  • Lynn P.
    07/21/2019 12:33

    First I want to say I'm truly sorry for the crazy people that have used guns the way they are not supposed to and I am truly saddened by that but I also want to say but as United States citizen I have a right to bear arms and I for one I'm grateful that we have that right am I so grateful that my children have learned to hunt and fish and all the Natural Things of life to be able to survive my son loves to hunt in the seasons and be able to have meat for his table without having to go to a store and purchase it natural things that God put on this Earth for us I believe it is not the gun that kills people it's the people that kill people unfortunately that is truly sad but I stand behind our Second Amendment right

  • Willard T.
    07/21/2019 01:38

    It supports our United States Constitution and our rites as United States citizens

  • Yoder D.
    07/20/2019 19:51

    Go Republicans Go NRA Go 2nd Amendment All gun laws are unconstitutional