Three years ago, I was honored to be nominated by petition and elected to the Board of the Nation’s oldest civil rights organization, the National Rifle Association (NRA). My first three-year term is coming to an end, and I will be up for reelection by our membership next year, 2019. This past week was our Fall NRA Board meeting in the D.C. area. Sadly, thanks to the threats, intimidation, and yes, violence of the progressive, socialist left, we can never disclose where we meet. I remember two years ago when the NRA annual meeting was in my hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. How proud I was to take the stage at that meeting before our members. And proud I am to don the pin that has the American and NRA flag side by side.
As an American black man, the history of the National Rifle Association has a special meaning for me, and I often reflect upon it. At a time when recently freed slaves were transitioning to being American citizens, they came under assault during the Reconstruction Era. When faced with the threats, coercion, intimidation, and yes, violence of an organization called the Ku Klux Klan, it was the NRA that stood with and defended the rights of blacks to the Second Amendment. I guess you must somewhat find it interesting, funny even, that the same political party that started the KKK is the same political party that stands against the NRA today. What is it they say about those who fail to learn from history? This is truly a matter to ponder and consider: the NRA was formed to promote better rifle marksmanship. But, when it was deemed critical, the NRA realized that it had to defend that important right for all Americans to protect and defend themselves, and their families. For all of these years, since 1871, that has been the raison d’etre of the National Rifle Association, defending a constitutional right. So, why would anyone take issue with that, and especially anyone from the black community?
Think about it. Would the Underground Railroad have been successful without blacks being able to secure their passage? I always remember that picture of Harriet Tubman with her rifle. Something tells me she was an NRA supporter. The ol’ Buffalo Soldiers were NRA members. Heck, that was, for many, the only organization that would accept them. Yes, they were. Current NRA Executive VP, Wayne LaPierre, saw some of their old membership cards when the Buffalo Soldier Monument was dedicated at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas. And my fellow Atlantan, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., once applied for a weapon carry license, though he was denied by the same folks who belonged to the party that created the KKK.
But today, there is a focused, dedicated war against the nation’s oldest civil rights organization that has stood with the black community since its freedom. The rich white elites such as Michael Bloomberg, New York’s Governor Cuomo, and many others have openly stated their desire to end, destroy, and bankrupt the NRA. But why? Law abiding, legal gun owners who are NRA members are castigated as terrorists, and having blood on their hands. It’s quite perplexing.
Study the history of the NRA with the black community. You will be hard-pressed to find anything troubling. Heck, Charleston Heston marched with Dr. King during the civil rights movement. And the NRA has an award in memory of Roy Innis, a true civil rights warrior.
Then we have the amazing tale of two organizations, comparing the NRA with another organization, Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood was founded by a person that was a white supremacist, a racist, someone who referred to blacks as “weeds” and “undesirables.” Sounds a lot like “deplorables” doesn’t it? And yes, there is a correlation, since the person who referred to some Americans as deplorables is a recipient of the Margaret Sanger Award, the founder of Planned Parenthood. How very interesting that we have a well-organized movement, supported by a complicit media, to undermine the existence of an organization that has stood with the black community.
Yet, an organization that was started by someone that wanted to exterminate – yes, strong words, but true – the black community is safeguarded. Heck, Planned Parenthood even receives American taxpayer dollars, to the tune of over $500 million. Since 1973, there have been nearly 18 million black babies murdered in the womb, hundreds a day, yet the NRA is demonized as having blood on its hands? This is utterly absurd, and to think, there are politicians who spend their time, money and effort going after the NRA. I tend to recall a statistic that there were more black babies murdered in the womb in New York, than there were born. I tend to believe taking an innocent life, masked under some delusional judgement of being a “right” is criminal, but that is just me, an American black man.
But think about it, why does the progressive, socialist left, andthe Democrat party, assail an organization whose purpose is to protect innocent lives, while at the same time praising, protecting, and funding an organization that takes innocent lives as their purpose?
The first Roy Innis Memorial Award will go to an American black man, a former soldier, someone who stood up against the tyranny of being unarmed, Otis McDonald of Chicago. Yes, the same Otis McDonald for whom the Second Amendment case, McDonald v. City of Chicago, is named. And who was it that stood with Otis McDonald? It was not Planned Parenthood. It was the nation’s oldest civil rights organization, the National Rifle Association. Hmm, how many blacks have been awarded the Margaret Sanger Award?
As an American black man, I am proud to be a board member of the nation’s oldest civil rights organization, the National Rifle Association. And I ask myself: what pride does anyone have in being a board member of Planned Parenthood?
In NRA Board meetings we discuss how often we have defended the Second Amendment, a constitutional right, and how we can grow our membership of liberty-loving Americans. We have a motto at the NRA, and it goes, “I am the NRA and I am Freedom’s Safest Place”.
What safety, freedom, does Planned Parenthood provide? Oh yea, the freedom to take the innocent life of an unborn child. Congratulations. Y’all have been very successful in the black community.
Allen West is a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army. Mr. West is a Senior Fellow at the Media Research Center to support its mission to expose and neutralize liberal media bias and is author of the forthcoming book from Brown Books Publishing Group coming this fall, “Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death.”