I experienced firsthand the illogical hatred shown to NRA members for simply associating with fellow patriots who believe the right to keep and bear arms is a “right of the people” that “shall not be infringed.” It happened while I was aboard a bus, discreetly speaking to a friend about the fantastic time I had at the NRA Youth Education Summit (Y.E.S.) in Washington, D.C. Suddenly, a man interrupted our conversation to confirm that I had just mentioned the three-letter acronym for the National Rifle Association. He said he was “surprised” that the NRA would have selected me, seeing how I was both a vegan and a Seventh-Day Adventist Christian, as both conflicted with his stereotypical view of the kind of people who support the NRA. He then proceeded to make a series of inflammatory statements about how my NRA is “the biggest bunch of lunatics! Look at how they treated those kids in Parkland.” It was a baseless statement, seeing how the NRA had nothing to do with the massacre of innocent children at Parkland, Fla., regardless of what the freedom-hating media say. Had the bus been a town hall, I would have been ready to counter him. Since it was not, I held my tongue, for to have spoken even the purest of truth in that moment would have done no good, nor would it have changed any minds. Therefore, let us remember always to show the haters the true character of our NRA. They might slander us from coast to coast, but may the lives of each and every member be a silent but powerful testament to who we really are: Freedom’s Safest Place.
Jonathan A. McCormick Jr.