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President’s Column | Gratitude And Vigilance

President’s Column | Gratitude And Vigilance

As I’m sure you’re already aware, the ongoing challenges presented by COVID-19 and its variants forced us to cancel the 2021 NRA Annual Meetings in Houston—a huge disappointment to us all. There is one silver lining to this for me, however, which is that I have the opportunity to write to you, the patriotic members of our Association, once more.

As we celebrate Thanksgiving this November, I’m grateful first for this wonderful country, for the brave colonists who landed at Plymouth, and then for all the brave settlers who first stood up and demanded their rights as free men. I’m grateful for their wisdom in crafting the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, especially the Second Amendment.

I’m thankful for those who continue to fight for those rights today, and for each hard-won legislative victory that helps hold tyranny at bay.

Looking back on this year, I’m grateful the United States Supreme Court has agreed to hear a crucial Second Amendment case, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen. This is the first case they’ve agreed to hear since their important decisions in McDonald v. Chicago and District of Columbia v. Heller, presenting the opportunity to affirm the Second Amendment right of Americans to not just keep but also to bear arms for their defense. We hope it will also beat back the poor decisions lower courts have made in defiance of the high court’s previous rulings on the right to keep and bear arms.

The settlers at Plymouth couldn’t have known it at the time, but their actions started something exceptional—something unseen in the world before—a country where citizens could truly be free.

I’m also thankful that gun-grabbing activist David Chipman will not be head of the ATF, as President Biden and the anti-gun Left dearly wanted. Chipman has made it clear through his statements and actions over the years that he does not believe in the individual right to keep and bear arms, and he, no doubt, would have used this unelected but powerful post to chip away at our rights.

I’m also grateful that Texas, Tennessee, Iowa, Montana and Utah enacted Constitutional Carry this year, joining 16 other states where law-abiding gun owners can now carry their means of self-protection, openly or concealed, without an additional license or tax. There were so many other pro-freedom victories across the country in 2021 that I urge you to check out NRAILA.org to see the important work done by your NRA at the state level.

Even as we give thanks to God for these victories, though, we must remain mindful of the constant threats presented by the well-organized and well-funded anti-gun movement. The Biden/Harris administration, rather than upholding the Constitution as sworn to do, continually look for opportunities to erode our rights. And, while vowing to render patriotic, law-abiding Americans defenseless, Biden, as commander-in-chief, is directly responsible for arming the Taliban with tactical vehicles, aircraft and guns during his fumbling withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan.

And let me remind you that these constant threats to our freedom are not just happening at the top levels of government. That is why I hope you are aware of—and actively engaged in—your local politics. There are a handful of elections this month, and your vote is critically important for the future of the Second Amendment. No doubt there will be a lot of distractions as we roll into next year’s midterm elections, but believe me, the gun-control crowd is not going to let it pass by without their influence. Billions of dollars are once again being spent by the likes of Michael Bloomberg and George Soros to elect their handpicked anti-gun candidates.

We can’t let that happen. We must remain vigilant. I know we are all very busy, especially this holiday season, but we must remember that the radical Left would gladly follow the Taliban’s example of disarming everyday citizens, leaving us helpless against both small- and large-scale threats.

The settlers at Plymouth couldn’t have known it at the time, but their actions started something exceptional—something unseen in the world before—a country where citizens could truly be free. It is on us to keep it that way. Let us not waver, but stand and fight!

After all, we have a country to save!

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