Who Really Runs the National Rifle Association?

On the off-chance that not all readers regularly view guns.com (which is exactly what you’d expect it to be) here’s my Q&A on gun policy. The site boldly published my answers – including the snark – unedited. Enjoy!


Q: You’ve been critical of the NRA leadership in the past but if you were in Wayne LaPierre’s shoes, how would you handle the current debate on gun control? Would you come to the table prepared to negotiate or would you dig in and prepare for a protracted battle in Congress?

A: If you’re Wayne LaPierre and you want to stand up for the rights of law-abiding gun-owners, you make a deal that sacrifices the non-law-abiding: universal background checks, better record-keeping and data analysis, stronger gun-tracing, tough penalties for scofflaw gun dealers and straw purchasers who knowingly arm criminals. But if you’re Wayne LaPierre and your job is making sure the dollars keep flowing from customers to your gun-manufacturer sponsors and from those sponsors to the NRA’s bank account (and your own), then you mount a national scare campaign to stimulate gun sales.

I’ll leave it up to you to figure out which Wayne LaPierre is actually running the NRA.

[Originally posted at The Reality-based Community]

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Mark Kleiman

Mark Kleiman is a professor of public policy at the New York University Marron Institute.