What Are Gun Rights Organizations Really Doing With Your Money?
The goal of gun rights organizations is to protect your Second Amendment rights by influencing Congress’s decision on gun policy and educating the public. To do this effectively, they pull from their budgets, many of which are made up almost exclusively of membership fees and donations. The majority of these organizations are non-profits, meaning they shouldn’t allocate but a small portion of their available funds to overhead costs. Unfortunately, as annual tax reports indicate, some gun rights organizations feel they are above the law and are hoarding fees and donations for leaders’ personal gain.
Average Cost of a Gun Rights Group Membership
The cost of membership with a gun rights organization varies from group to group, with the larger and better-known groups charging more than their smaller, grass-roots counterparts. For instance, a basic membership with the NRA is $45, while Gun Owners of America charges just $25 for annual inclusion. Between $25 and $35 seems to be the norm, though most organizations offer savings on three- to five-year and life memberships.
Where Your Membership Fees Should Be Going
Gun rights will always be a touchy subject in America and, as such, will always require ongoing funding. Just like with membership fees, the specifics of how organizations allocate their budgets vary from group to group. While all pledge to defend your Second Amendment freedom whenever and wherever it comes under attack, some promise to do more. Examples of how gun rights groups should be spending your money are as follows:
- Empower individuals through self-defense programs
- Train the next generation of sportsmen and women
- Support law enforcement officers with top-tier training programs
Larger organizations, such as the NRA, use individual donations to fund its political action committee. This committee is responsible for running ads, filling campaign coffers and sending out mailers that are for against political candidates.
Where Your Money Is Actually Going
Many gun rights organizations have remained true to their roots and spend money in ways that further the best interests of members and gun owners across America. A select few, however, have taken advantage of their influence and hoard funds for their own personal gain. Recent organizations have made headlines for allegations of exorbitant spending by top executives and board members.
For example, a large number of members — who are not also paid directors — have collected money from fees and donations over the past couple of years. In other situations, board members racked up millions of dollars in travel, entertainment, legal fees and office supplies. In one extreme case, one organization paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for one executive’s personal clothing items and another $200,000+ for luxury travel. Spending in other areas — such as gun training, education and safety — however, dropped by nearly a quarter during this same period.
The best way to avoid having your hard-earned money fall into the hands of the wrong organization is to do your homework. Knowledge, in any circumstance, is power. BlackOpsTac focuses on empowering followers with news, tips and other need-to-know information, all of which we hope better prepares them for survival situations. Though money won’t help you in a survival situation, your vigilance will. Stay informed, stay aware and you’ll be better off for it.