Judge Grants Preliminary Injunction Against ATF Rule on Gun Dealers

A federal judge in Texas has granted a preliminary injunction against the ATF’s new rule on who is “engaged in the business” of dealing firearms, but his ruling won’t apply to every gun owner across the country. Instead, U.S. District Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk has limited the scope of the injunction solely to the named plaintiffs in the case.

Still, given that those plaintiffs include the states of Texas, Utah, Louisiana, and Mississippi along with Gun Owners of America, the Tennessee Firearms Association, and the Virginia Citizens Defense League, millions of gun owners who could otherwise be subjected to an ATF investigation or federal charges simply for offering a firearm for sale can rest a little easier for the time being.

In his ruling, Kacsmaryk held that the plaintiff’s argument that the new ATF rule violates the Administrative Procedures Act is likely to prevail at trial. According to the judge, the new language from the ATF goes far beyond the small changes in statute that were approved by Congress as part of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.

Here, the Final Rule clashes with the text of the BSCA in at least three ways. First, it asserts that there is no “minimum number of firearms to actually be sold to be ‘engaged in the business’” for the purposes of the licensing requirement. . “[A] single firearm transaction”— or even a mere offer to engage in a transaction — may suffice.

[W]hile selling large numbers of firearms or engaging or offering to engage infrequent transactions may be highly indicative of business activity, neither thecourts nor the Department have recognized a set minimum number of firearms purchased or resold that triggers the licensing requirement. Similarly, there is no minimum number of transactions that determines whether a person is “engaged inthe business” of dealing in firearms. Even a single firearm transaction, or offer to engage in a transaction, when combined with other evidence, may be sufficient to require a license.

But the BSCA says otherwise: The term “engaged in the business” means . . .

as applied to a dealer in firearms, as defined in section 921(a)(11)(A), a person whodevotes time, attention, and labor to dealing in firearms as a regular course of tradeor business to predominantly earn a profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms, but such term shall not include a person who makes occasional sales, exchanges, or purchases of firearms for the enhancement of a personalcollection or for a hobby, or who sells all or part of his personal collection of firearms[.]

Congress says someone must repeatedly buy and resell firearms to be considered a gun dealer, while the ATF says merely offering a single gun for sale can suffice. Kacsmaryk rightfully held that it’s the language in the statute that matters most, and the agency has likely strayed so far from the text that its rule should be rendered null and void when the case is resolved on the merits.

The judge also took issue with the ATF rule’s suggestion that “actual profit is not a requirement of the statute —it is only the predominant intent to earn a profit through the repetitive purchase and resale of firearms that is required,” pointing out that the current statute states “proof of profit shall not be required as to a person who engages in the regular and repetitive purchase and disposition of firearms for criminal purposes or terrorism. According to Kacsmaryk, that means that proof of profit is required if the feds want to charge someone with being an unlicensed gun dealer and there are no allegations of criminal activity or terrorism involved.

Lastly, Kacsmaryk found fault with the ATF’s presumptions on “when a person has the intent to ‘predominantly earn a profit’” and “that someone is ‘engaged in the business.’” Under the ATF’s rule, people are presumed to have those intentions unless they can prove otherwise, which the judge says “flip[s] the statute on its head by requiring that firearm owners prove innocence rather than the government prove guilt.”

I wish that the judge would have applied this injunction to all gun owners and not just the named plaintiffs in the case, but this is still a significant victory for those challenging the new rule. Texas v. ATF isn’t the only lawsuit to challenge the ATF rule either, so there’s a good chance that more gun owners will find relief as the other lawsuits move forward in the courts.

Uvalde Lawsuit Against UPS, FedEx the Dumbest Ones Yet

Lawsuits against companies that had no hand in something like the awful events of Uvalde aren’t surprising, but they’re stupid.

It’s idiotic.

But I thought we’d seen all the stupid we were going to see on that front. That’s a case of “shame on me” for underestimating the vile idiocy of the anti-gun movement. It seems they have found a new target.

Yep. This is pure idiocy.

The Hell Fire trigger has been on the market for over 30 years. It’s nothing but a trigger that allows people to fire semi-automatic weapons a bit faster, much like many other trigger modifications. These are not illegal and are perfectly acceptable to ship through either UPS or FedEx.

Moreover, it doesn’t violate the UPS conditions of carriage because the trigger won’t do any of those things. Not by itself, anyway.

“But it’s also a violation of school zone area protections.”

The courts have long found that people living less than 1,000 feet from a school zone don’t forfeit their Second Amendment rights simply because they live within walking distance of a school. That means people can lawfully buy guns and store them in their homes.

It also means that there is no reason for a carrier to question gun part going to a home within that area.

In short, UPS and FedEx had no reason to not ship the part to the individual who turned out to later become the Uvalde killer.

Let’s also be real here for a moment. UPS and FedEx aren’t gun companies. They don’t have any reason to stay in this fight. They make money shipping guns and parts, but do they make enough to deal with the negative publicity that might arise? Probably not. They’re far more likely to cave than a gun company might.

But let’s understand what this is really about. It’s not about UPS or FedEx doing anything wrong. They know this is a stretch. They don’t expect this to go to trial, even. Oh no, this is about something far different.

What these folks are trying to do is to use the legal system to bully UPS and FedEx into refusing to transport firearms or firearm parts. They want to see these carriers cut out every firearm-related company so that those companies will have a harder time shipping products to customers.

As a result of that, it becomes harder for law-abiding citizens to get not just parts but guns shipped to their FFL.

All of this isn’t about correcting wrongs committed prior to Uvalde. It’s about making it harder for you and me to exercise our Second Amendment rights. Who needs gun control if you can’t find a gun to buy in the first place?

That’s what this is about. Sure, this one lawsuit won’t necessarily change the landscape, but it’s never about one lawsuit. It’s about the death by a thousand cuts. It’s about making it just too difficult to deal with the firearm industry.

And the stupidity won’t end here, either. We’ll see more and worse.

When we were picking up an ammo order,  AK & I had the pleasure of meeting Carlo Fiocchi at the Ozark facility and having him give us a personal tour many years ago.


Fiocchi Ammo Review

When someone starts talking about exquisite Italian engineering, the average person will naturally think of names like Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Ducati. And although Italy is very well known for their luxury car brands, if you’ve ever put any number of rounds of Fiocchi ammo through your favorite Glock, Sig Sauer, or Smith & Wesson, you know that Italian ammo is good stuff!

Although many shooters know Fiocchi for their handgun ammo, the company also has an excellent line of centerfire rifle ammo and has made a huge impact in the world of sporting clays with their shotgun target loads as well as offering a comprehensive line of rimfire ammo as well.

To put it bluntly, Fiocchi makes quality ammo at a price point most every shooter can afford. In this Fiocchi ammo review, we will take a look at what makes Fiocchi an excellent choice for your favorite handgun or rife as well as digging into the storied history of Italy’s oldest ammunition factory.

What is the quality of Fiocchi ammo?

Fiocchi ammunition is good ammo, extremely high-quality, and is perfect for plinking, competitive matches, or long-distance target shooting. I have not experienced any jams of failure to fire (FTF) malfunctions while using Fiocchi ammo. No matter if you enjoy rimfire shooting, sporting clays, or centerfire rifle/pistol, factory Fiocchi loads are perfect for any situation.

Where can I buy Fiocchi Ammo?

Check out our entire selection of Fiocchi Ammo for sale online! Don’t hesitate to purchase rounds like 5.56 NATO in bulk to save even more money on Fiocchi ammunition!

Fiocchi Ammo History and Important Information

Fiocchi Munizioni (Fiocchi Ammunition) was established in 1876 by Giulio Fiocchi in Lecco, Italy. It is one of Italy’s oldest and largest ammo manufacturers and supplies centerfire, rimfire, and shotgun ammunition to civilians, hunters, and law enforcement.

Although Fiocchi is not Europe’s oldest ammo manufacturer (that tile goes to Sellier & Bellot), Fiocchi has developed a reputation as one of the world’s finest loaders of metallic cartridges. In 1989 they received NATO qualifications to produce 9x19mm NATO ammunition to CIP specs, and their 5.56x45mm NATO qualification came 10 years later in 1999.

Although the ammo factory in Italy remains the home of Fiocchi ammo, access to the American market has been a tricky path Fiocchi has had to traverse.

During the 1950’s, Fiocchi in partnership with Smith & Wesson, owned a factory in Alton, Illinois. However, Fiocchi decided to sell their portion of the factory back to Smith & Wesson and it wasn’t until 1980 when Carlo Fiocchi helped put Fiocchi ammunition back into American shooting goods stores.

On his honeymoon, Carlo traveled in the United States with the interest of locating a site for a new Fiocchi ammunition plant. Carlo was able to convince the then president Paolo to build a manufacturing plant in Ozark, Missouri near Springfield.

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The new Minutemen buy guns

As we approach 60 consecutive months of more than a million gun sales, it’s time to review the state of gun ownership in America, and enjoy the tears of anti-liberty/gun cracktivists.

According to a report by the National Sports Shooting Foundation (NSSF), the number of people who became first-time gun owners since 2020 has reportedly grown to over 22.3 million people, or the population of Florida.

Keep in mind every federal background check prior to purchase, can account for more than one gun. Why would so many Americans become new gun owners? In a word: Democrat/socialist/communist (D/s/c) policies:

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Number Of First-Time Gun Owners Since 2020 Now Equals Population Of Florida

There has been a drastic surge in the number of Americans becoming first-time gun owners over the past four years according to a press release.

The National Sports Shooting Foundation (NSSF) pointed to data showing a major trend in gun ownership. The number of people who became first-time gun owners since 2020 has reportedly grown to over 22.3 million people, which is equal to the population of Florida.

The impetus behind the rapid increase in first-time gun ownership is attributed to numerous factors, including COVID-era lockdown measures, soft-on-crime prosecutors and skyrocketing violent crime rates, according to the NSSF.

The report highlights Chris Cheng, a competitive shooting champion who testified before Congress about the rise in gun ownership.

“The past year-and-a-half or so with COVID-19 has been a pressure cooker … When you couple that with calls to defund the police and taking law enforcement officers off the street … it makes citizens like me less safe,” Cheng said during his testimony, according to the report. “If I can’t have law enforcement there, then it is a rational conclusion that individual citizens like myself would opt to utilize my Second Amendment right to purchase a firearm and use that firearm in lawful and legal self-defense.”

More than 52% of American voters indicated that they or someone in their home owns a firearm, according to an NBC News national poll released in November 2023. Researchers also found that 48% of firearm owners were concerned that the government would not take enough action to restrict access to firearms while 47% worried that the state would go too far in regulating guns.

Bank of America Walks Back Gun Lending Ban

One of the country’s largest financial institutions is reversing course on AR-15s and other popular firearms.

Bank of America backed off its blanket ban on lending to companies that manufacture what it has labeled “military-style firearms,” Bloomberg first reported Friday. Going forward, the bank will resume lending to firearms companies on a case-by-case basis subject to “enhanced due diligence,” according to its latest Environmental and Social Risk Policy (ESRP) Framework.

Bill Haldin, a spokesperson for Bank of America, confirmed the change in policy in a statement to The Reload.

“Certain client relationships or transactions that carry heightened risks go through a due diligence process that involves senior level risk review,” he said. “We recently detailed that in our updated risk policy framework.”

The about-face comes as Republican-led states are increasingly turning up the heat on financial institutions and other businesses that adopt environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policies they argue target legal firearms and energy production. Gun commerce, in particular, has become a flashpoint in recent years as major banks like Bank of AmericaJPMorgan, and Citibank publicly cut off funding to businesses that sell certain firearms and accessories. In response, Republicans in states like Texas and Florida have shown an increased willingness to use new government regulations to combat those practices.

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Louisiana Passes Second Amendment Financial Privacy Act

BATON ROUGE, LA. (May 28, 2024) – Today, the Louisiana Senate gave final approval to the “Second Amendment Financial Privacy Act,” a bill to prohibit financial institutions from using a credit card merchant code that would enable the tracking of firearm and ammunition purchases.

Sen. Blake Miguez filed Senate Bill 301 (SB301) on March 1. The bill would prohibit any financial institution operating in the state from requiring or permitting “the assignment of a firearms code in a way that distinguishes a firearms retailer from other retailers.”

SB301 also prohibits all state and local government entities from keeping any list, record, or registry of privately owned firearms or the owners of such firearms. Financial institutions would be prohibited from denying a transaction based on the code. Those found guilty in a court of violating the law would be subject to a fine not to exceed $1,000 per violation, with the court determining the amount by factors “including the financial resources of the violator and the harm or risk of harm to the rights under the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article I, Section 11 of the Constitution of Louisiana, resulting from the violation.”

On April 16, the Senate passed the bill by a vote of 28-11. Last week, the House approved the measure with some technical amendments by a vote of 74-26. Today, the Senate concurred with a vote of 27-9.

Over the 2023-2024 legislative sessions, at least 13 states have passed similar legislation.

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 FPC, NRA File Briefs With Supreme Court Over Mexico Lawsuit

The case involving Mexico’s lawsuit against U.S. gun manufacturers and retailers for violence south of the border is beginning to see some action from pro-gun rights organizations.

On Wednesday, both the Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) and the National Rifle Association (NRA) filed briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court seeking a review of lower court decisions regarding Mexico’s attempts to impose its gun-control preferences on Americans.

“Mexico’s frivolous lawsuit to impose its draconian disarmament policies is a bald attempt to wage war on peaceable Americans and our constitutionally protected rights,” FPC President Brandon Combs said in a release announcing filing of the brief. “As our brief makes clear, the Supreme Court should enforce the law, put an end to this radical anti-rights lawfare and protect the right to keep and bear arms.”

“Mexico’s attempt in this litigation to impose a foreign nation’s policy preferences on the American people through judicial fiat and exact a financial penalty that would cripple the American firearms ecosystem would be deeply troubling even if it stood alone,” the FPC brief stated. “It does not. To the contrary, this action is merely one of a phalanx of recent, abusive lawsuits brought by anti-Second-Amendment activists, organizations and governments.”

In the end, the brief requested that the Supreme Court grant a review and intervene in the important case to protect gunmakers and the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). In an earlier ruling, the First Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the PLCAA does not bar Mexico’s lawsuit.

“The situation has accordingly become dire, and the time for this Court’s intervention is now,” the brief stated. “In the four-and-a-half years since this Court declined to review the Connecticut Supreme Court’s decision in Soto, the chief development has been the contrivance of ever more devious and extreme methods of evading the Act Congress passed to save the firearms community from abusive litigation. If the Court allows the lower-court’s treatment of the PLCAA to ‘percolate for another four-and-a-half years, there may be nothing left of the firearms marketplace to save.”

In the NRA brief, the organization stated: “Mexico has extinguished its constitutional arms right and now seeks to extinguish America’s. To that end, Mexico aims to destroy the American firearms industry financially.”

“This case exemplifies why PLCAA was enacted,” the brief continued. “Mexico seeks billions of dollars in damages and the imposition of extensive gun controls in America while relying on shoddy data and false allegations to exaggerate the impact of Petitioners’ firearms on Mexican homicides.”

The lawsuit is named Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc. v. Estados Unidos Mexicanos

 

Hamlin Reaches Out To Staff Today

New NRA CEO and EVP Doug Hamlin sent out an email this morning to all NRA staff. It was part thank you, part what we need to do, part how he intends to manage, and part recognition that finances are tough.

There were some interesting points in what he said to staff that need to be emphasized. First and foremost, he said that he and all the NRA staff work for the members. That was nice to hear given the perception that many including Wayne only saw the members as sheep to be fleeced. Second, Hamlin emphasized that the NRA is not leaving Fairfax anytime soon. He encouraged employees in the Metro DC region to return to work in the headquarters building. Third, he said there would be new digital marketing initiatives to increase memberships and challenged employees to tell their friends to join. Finally, he said his objective was to restore trust in the NRA. He didn’t sugarcoat the fact that finances are tight.

The one thing I did disagree with him on is the assertion that the NRA is “the most significant conservative organization left on the battlefield.” I think we need to get away from the perception that the NRA is only for conservatives. While I am most certainly a conservative with libertarian leanings, I recognize that support for the Second Amendment and our civil rights is not limited to conservatives nor should it be. Regardless of where you are on the political spectrum, if you support the Second Amendment then you are my friend.

You can read the whole email for yourself as I’ve posted it below:

From: Hamlin, Douglas
Sent: Thursday, May 23, 2024 9:28 AM
To: #All NRA Employees <#AllNRAEmployees@nrahq.org>
Subject: Full Speed Ahead!

To All:

I’m humbled and honored to be sending you this e-mail as your new EVP/CEO. It has been a tumultuous 5 years as we have battled for the survival of our beloved National Rifle Association (NRA). Every one of us has been in the trenches as we have fought the good fight and kept the faith. We have stood strong shoulder to shoulder working together on behalf of our members. I want to emphasize – WE WORK FOR OUR MEMBERS!

THANK YOU for not wavering as we have withstood extreme pressure and disinformation from the media, left leaning political forces, and the State of New York.

I’ve been a proud NRA Staffer for over 10 years. I do not assume my new position for any other reason than I love my country and will not stand idly by as we see our freedoms diminished. The NRA is the most significant conservative organization left on the battlefield. We are targeted because we win…and we are right in our cause!

As we move forward my primary objective is to restore the trust of our members, our industry, our donors, and our staff. We are in a tough spot financially but are going to make it. I will be spending a significant amount of time fundraising to keep our 153 years + operation on track. Once our members see we are making progress with the changes resulting from the efforts of our Board of Directors, they will come back in significant numbers. I ask you to go out and recruit new members. Tell your friends to join!

There has been a lot of talk about moving our operations away from Fairfax, Virginia. We will not be moving at this time. I hope those of you in the DC, Maryland, Virginia region will come to our office as much as possible. 

My leadership style is one of consensus building. I do not like to be micro-managed and that’s how I will interact with the leadership team. Having said that I’m not afraid to make tough decisions and get involved when and where needed.

We will be moving quickly on some digital marketing initiatives to stir up some positive public relations that will hopefully stimulate new memberships. Stay tuned for more information on our plans as we develop them.

In closing thank you for your dedication to our cause. Our mission to protect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens is more important now than ever before. Hold your heads high as we continue to do the important work of the NRA…together.

Doug Hamlin

Executive Vice President/CEO

National Rifle Association

Analysis: Is the NRA on Track to Reform Now?

The reformers are ascendant at the National Rifle Association, but have they made enough progress to fix things before the wheels fall off?

The first substantial sign that reforms had gained real sway with the NRA membership came at the beginning of the month when a slate of them won board seats, with several landing among the most-voted-for candidates. In the five years since longtime NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre was accused of diverting millions of the charity’s dollars toward lavish personal expenses, the board election was the first direct, concrete sign members were fed up with the ordeal and wanted the significant change the reformers promised.

Most of the rest of the board seems to have gotten the message, too. While only five of the 76 board members ran on a reform platform, they took three of the four top positions in the leadership elections. The candidates put up and endorsed by the reformers won the First and Second Vice President positions. Most importantly, they picked Doug Mills as the permanent replacement for Wayne LaPierre as Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President.

The group also secured a majority on the nominating committee, which decides who gets on the board election ballots and who gets put up in future leadership positions. They also got a number of members on the executive committee, which effectively operates the NRA between full board meetings.

That’s a remarkable turnaround from just a year ago, when nearly all of the vocal reformers had been wiped off the board, and LaPierre remained in charge.

However, the NRA’s problems have also deepened in that time. Shortly after LaPierre resigned, a jury in the group’s corruption case found he’d taken upwards of $5.5 million from its members to spend on lavish personal jet travel while the NRA failed to safeguard its assets. Those members have continued to flee, resulting in plummeting revenue that’s left the organization on the brink. Despite being forced to cut back on most core services and programs, its legal fees have continued to flow into the coffers of controversial outside counsel Bill Brewer at a furious pace.

Its political relevance has faded, too. It can no longer support the staff needed to lobby effectively at the state and federal level, and its Political Victory Fund has uncharacteristically fallen behind the fundraising pace of the gun-control groups. While it was still able to bring Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump to speak at its annual meeting, and it has already agreed to host another event with him over the summer, there’s little chance it will be able to spend even half of what it did to help elect him in 2016.

There’s a ticking clock element to this turnaround attempt, too.

The second phase of the NRA’s corruption trial is set to begin in less than two months. That gives the group very little time to change course on either its legal strategy or internal practices. And, given at most 36 of the 76 board members voted for the reform leadership candidates and a member of the old leadership team won the president’s race, they are likely to face at least some internal opposition to major changes.

There’s also the fact that the reform candidates who won weren’t the ones who’ve spoken out publicly against LaPierre’s corruption or the dodgy path past leadership took the group down. Nor are they outsiders being brought in to clean things up. Instead, like Doug Hamlin himself, many have been with the organization throughout this ordeal. If they’ve done anything to change course up to this point, they’ve done it out of public view, which may make some reform supporters skeptical of how far they’re willing to go.

Still, less than a week into the NRA’s new leadership regime, there are already signs of substantive changes.

The last thing the NRA’s old leadership tried to do before losing control was move the group’s headquarters from Virginia to Texas. But when reformers pressed them at the members’ meeting last Saturday, they were unable to articulate what purpose the move would serve or how much it would cost. Hamlin announced on Thursday that the move was being put on hold and encouraged more staff to work from the group’s headquarters.

Hamlin also split up the role of John Frazer, who was found by the jury to have knowingly signed off on materially false statements about the group in government documents, and appointed a different person as the NRA’s general counsel. He also brought back Joe Debergalis to run the NRA’s general operations. Degbergalis was removed at the end of last year to make way for former spokesperson and longtime LaPierre ally Andrew Arulanandam to take the role, which put him in line to become interim CEO after LaPierre resigned.

Hamlin has also taken a different approach to discussing the NRA’s struggles. While previous leadership largely deflected questions about them, he has acknowledged the issues head-on in an email to the NRA staff and comments to The Reload. He has promised a “new NRA” with a greater commitment to transparency and good governance.

“I think that we’re going to be more transparent, just like we were in this board meeting today,” he told The Reload shortly after his election on Monday. “And we’re going to be good stewards of their money. And we’re going to be responsible managers and regain their trust over time.”

His statements indicate that he and the other reformers plan to institute other changes in an effort to regain the members they lost during the ordeal.

“Once our members see we are making progress with the changes resulting from the efforts of our Board of Directors, they will come back in significant numbers,” Hamlin said in the email to staff that was obtained by The Reload.

But the NRA needs to do much more, and there’s not a lot of time to do it. Actions will speak louder than words, as they always do, and we’ll be here to document them if and when they happen.

April Was 57th Month in a Row With More than 1 Million Firearm Purchases

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) reported on Tuesday that more than one million firearms were purchased by Americans in April, marking the 57th consecutive month in which more than a million firearms were purchased by the citizenry.

Said Mark Olive, NSSF’s managing director for public affairs:

Over 1.2 million Americans showed President Biden exactly where they are when it comes to his promises of increased gun control should he be elected for another term.

President Biden has used every tool at his disposal to attack the firearm industry, from publishing Constitutionally dubious and overreaching administrative rules that bypass Congress to create criminal law, to weaponizing the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security to throttle firearm and ammunition manufacturers and exporters.

Americans reject these misdirected and politically motivated maneuvers to infringe on their Second Amendment freedoms and punish the industry that makes it possible to exercise the rights to keep and bear arms. By the millions, for 57 months straight, Americans choose to lawfully purchase, keep and use the firearms of their choosing.

What’s remarkable is that the data used by NSSF, the NICS database that tracks background checks, is incomplete. Many states still don’t require background checks for private transfers, and the black market in used or stolen guns is likely more active than ever as the government ramps up its attack on legal ownership.

Two years ago it was revealed that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) had collected and then stored on its computer network nearly a billion firearms purchase records. These records contain pertinent and personal information on private buyers of firearms, so the ATF knows where the guns are and who owns them.

The ATF is now pushing credit-card companies to track and report on purchasers using a credit card to make a firearm or ammunition purchase. This is ostensibly to help reduce gun violence.

John Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center pointed out the absurdity of the idea that tracking firearms purchases through credit-card usage will help reducing gun violence:

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Well, it tells me that the NRA BoD aren’t really capable of making the hard decisions necessary to clean the slate. It’s more likely now that State Supreme Court Judge Cohen will take matters in hand which could have been avoided if the BoD had the guts to take care of business.



An Open Letter From NRA Staffers To The Board

I received this open letter to the NRA Board within the last hour. It is reportedly from current and former NRA staffers who are fed up with Charles Cotton, Bill Brewer, and most of the upper management of the NRA. The level of detail in the letter is enough to convince me it is real such as Sonya Rowling being forced to cut a check to Brewer by Andrew Arulanadam. I learned of that just earlier this afternoon.

Here is the letter in its unedited entirety. Given it is an open letter, it is meant for sharing. You might want to share it with each and every Board member that you know. I know they sent it to the NRA email address for the Board but I doubt it will be routed to Board members before their 9am CDT meeting tomorrow in Dallas.

Dear NRA Board of Directors,

We are writing as current and former NRA staff members. We choose to remain anonymous due to the almost certain retaliation from NRA executives and the Brewer firm. Since 2018, our association has been in complete peril, and no one has asked the NRA’s staff for their input. We are the ones who work day in and day out to accomplish the NRA’s mission of promoting the safe and responsible use of firearms and defending the Second Amendment. Meanwhile, it has become clear that NRA’s executives and officers are focused on ensuring a steady revenue stream for the Brewer firm. We pose this question: When will we stop the bleeding, and when is enough, enough?

Over the past six years, the NRA has become unrecognizable. The NRA of 2018 is far different from the NRA of 2024, and this convention hall is proof. This deterioration is due to the NRA’s poor leadership. President Cotton, Andrew Arulanandam, Randy Kozuch, Tyler Schropp, Doug Hamlin, and Sonya Rowling have not, and arguably never have, acted in the best interest of NRA members. The NRA’s recent misfortunes are often blamed on the New York Attorney General. While we are no fans of Letitia James, 90% of the NRA’s issues are now self-inflicted. Yes, AG James has had a gun pointed at the NRA from the start of her campaign, but NRA’s leadership continues to hand her magazines with ammunition.

We will briefly discuss each leader, avoiding rehashing old issues.

President Cotton has overseen many of the NRA’s poor decisions over the years on the Audit Committee, the SLC, and as President. It’s time to change his title from president to king because he is acting as a monarch. King Charles has been positioning himself to become executive vice president and chief executive officer. Anyone familiar with his record at the NRA knows he is not the right fit for EVP. The new NRA EVP needs to be unapologetically pro-gun, innovative, politically connected, and experienced in turning around failing organizations. King Charles is not that person. His primary focus is on maintaining his relationship with the Brewer firm. Recent reports confirmed by the Brewer firm show that King Charles and Bill Brewer even fly on private jets together. The firm claims this saves the NRA money, but this is unlikely. While the firm may not directly bill the NRA for the jet, there is nothing to stop them from increasing their billable hours. This is reminiscent of the MMP yacht situation. King Charles and Bill Brewer are the only ones pushing for the move to Texas because they are both based there. No other staff member, including NRA’s Interim CEO Andrew Arulanandam, plans on moving to Texas. King Charles’s goal is to secure a high salary for a few years as his retirement fund.

Andrew Arulanandam cannot make a good decision to save his life. Since taking his position on February 1, the NRA has continued to decline. Arulanandam exists in his position solely to follow King Charles’s orders and maintain the relationship with the Brewer firm. In fact, Arulanandam reportedly forced Sonya Rowling to pay Brewer millions of dollars today before tomorrow’s board meeting. If King Charles becomes EVP, Arulanandam will be rewarded and return to his high-paying job as executive director of General Operations, with an updated salary and maximized pension at retirement.

Randy Kozuch has been consistently overlooked throughout his career at the NRA. Kozuch is not a leader, and most of the ILA staff don’t respect him. Kozuch is a yes-man. Shortly after becoming executive director of ILA, Wayne asked him for millions from the ILA budget to keep the NRA afloat. Kozuch complied, and his newly hired ILA Finance Director quit after the first week due to discomfort. This wasn’t the first time the NRA asked ILA for millions, and Kozuch complies every time. King Charles, Bill Brewer, and Arulanandam don’t respect Kozuch; he is just the perfect puppet to help pay off Brewer’s excessive bills.

The other executives are equally ineffective. Tyler Schropp, the highest-paid executive at the NRA, can barely raise money without Wayne. Doug Hamlin operates entirely in the red and doesn’t know how to run an organization. Sonya Rowling is only in her position because she is a “whistleblower,” which looked good for the Brewer firm to show a course correction. However, she is inexperienced and would run the organization into the ground without realizing it.

Finally, the Brewer firm is the most ineffective and corrupt part of the NRA. Bill Brewer excels at one thing: losing. He flaunts the money he has taken, pulling up to the hotel this weekend in an Aston Martin while losing consistently. And he is Angus McQueen’s son-in-law. The NRA has funded the McQueen/Brewer family feud for too long, at the expense of our members who faithfully support us.

Board members, when is enough, enough? You are the only ones who can stop this. Charles Cotton is not fit for EVP. Andrew Arulanandam is not fit for EVP. No one at the NRA is currently fit for EVP. The Texas move is a waste of money and unnecessary. The Brewer firm is ripping the NRA off for every dollar we have. The NRA is failing. Revenue is failing, membership numbers are falling, ILA’s power is a fraction of what it used to be, and other training organizations are outpacing us. It is so bad that NRA is liquidating investments to continue paying Brewer. We beg you, as you go into the meeting tomorrow, to stop the bleeding and hold Charles Cotton, Andrew Arulanandam, and the other officers accountable.

Save the National Rifle Association of America.

Alabama Governor Signs Privacy Bill for Gun and Ammo Sales
Supporters say the law will eliminate concerns that merchants will collude with the government to take your guns.

Without comment, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed a new law this week prohibiting merchants from assigning a merchant code to gun and ammo sales. In a statement, Lawrence Keane, the senior vice president and general counsel for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the trade group for the gun industry, said his organization helped lawmakers craft the Second Amendment Financial Privacy Act.

“Alabamians won’t need to worry that ‘woke’ Wall Street banks, credit card companies and payment processors will collude with government entities to spy on their private finances for exercising their rights,” Keane said.

In addition to eliminating merchant codes, which financial institutions use to track goods and services, the law also prohibits any list or registry of privately owned guns. “No American should fear being placed on a government watchlist simply for exercising their Constitutionally-protected rights to keep and bear arms,” Keane added.

According to the NSSF, Alabama joins 14 other states that have already enacted such laws and bills are making their way through statehouses in two other states. On the flip side, the group said California and Colorado are the only states requiring that financial institutions track gun and ammo sales.

In March, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, was joined by 31 other lawmakers urging the Department of Treasury to provide guidance directing financial institutions to code gun and ammo sales, arguing that it would allow authorities to flag suspicious or fraudulent purchases. Before 2022, they said there were no merchant codes for gun and ammo sales despite coding for every other type of merchant.

The concept was reportedly proposed by financial columnist Andrew Ross Sorkin, who penned the book Too Big to Fail about the 2008 financial crisis. He argued that the market could better address gun violence issues like mass shootings after multiple failed attempts by Congress. However, groups like the NSSF argue that such plans lead to the targeting of pro-gun and conservative groups.

Alabama lawmakers filed the bill at the beginning of April and after multiple readings, it was delivered to the governor by the end of the month. Ivey signed it on May 7 and it was immediately enacted.

There’s a Reason Gun Stores Aren’t Named After Most Crimes

Guns end up in the hands of criminals via a number of methods. Many are stolen from law-abiding citizens, and then a large number of those are sold on the streets. Others are obtained via illegal straw purchases.

The ATF acknowledges that only a tiny fraction of one percent of the gun stores out there are complicit in illegal gun trades, but the anti-gun jihadists out there can’t really accept that.

They want to vilify gun stores with even the most tenuous relationship to a high-profile crime. To do that, they need to know the name of the store in question, and they can’t get it.

And that drives some people nuts.

Nearly three years have passed since the 2021 murder of Chicago police officer Ella French, and police and prosecutors have revealed much about her killing: the grim details of her final moments, the type of gun used to shoot her during a traffic stop and how that .22-caliber Glock made its way into the hands of the man who pulled the trigger.

But absent from the public discussion was the name of the retail shop where the gun used to kill French was purchased. Its disclosure has been hindered by a long-standing push by the gun industry to protect the identities of retailers that have sold guns used in crimes.

The law enforcement agencies that investigated her murder and prosecuted her killer could not or would not say. Those that tracked and prosecuted the man who bought the gun used to kill her have been just as silent...

Two decades ago, federal and local law enforcement routinely identified the source of guns used in crimes to members of the media or anyone else who inquired.

That changed in 2003 when Congress, bowing to pressure from the gun industry, approved legislation known as the Tiahrt amendment, named after a former Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Kan., a gun rights champion. The amendment bars police and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives from disclosing any information they uncover during gun-tracing investigations, including the names of retailers.

The move hobbled efforts by cities to study gun-trafficking patterns and ended what the gun industry has called a pattern of “name and shame,” in which retailers were thrust into the spotlight for selling guns later linked to crimes.

Gun safety advocates and researchers argue that Tiarht created a knowledge gap on a pressing public safety issue and allowed retailers to escape scrutiny. Such information, they say, can help the public determine whether the transactions that put guns in the hands of criminals are a rarity or part of a larger pattern.

Except this particular piece names and shames the gun store that sold the firearm used to kill French. It engages in the very practice it’s trying to suggest that the gun industry was making up or something to prevent local governments from studying the problem.

See, the issue is that there’s no evidence of wrongdoing. If there is, then the person who broke the law should be punished. The issue is that a straw buy isn’t exactly rocket science.

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Judge Fast-Tracks Review of ATF’s Universal Background Check Rule Amid Legal Challenge by GOA, Texas

A federal judge has expedited the legal proceedings against a new rule by the ATF that mandates universal background checks on private firearm sales. U.S. District Court Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk’s decision on Friday sets the stage for a rapid review of the contentious rule, which has faced strong opposition from gun rights advocates and several states.

The rule, slated to be enforced starting May 20, 2024, would significantly expand the scope of background checks, requiring them even in private transactions that have traditionally been exempt. This includes sales by individuals not classified as being “engaged in the business” of selling firearms. According to reporting by Breitbart News, this change blurs the lines between private sellers and licensed dealers, potentially impacting millions of gun owners across the country who wish to buy or sell a firearm to or from a private seller.

Gun Owners of America (GOA), the Gun Owners Foundation and the State of Texas, along with other states (Louisiana, Mississippi and Utah) and advocacy groups (including the Tennessee Firearms Association and the Virginia Citizens Defense League), have filed a lawsuit arguing that the rule not only exceeds the regulatory powers of the ATF but also infringes on constitutional rights. The plaintiffs claim the rule would unfairly classify ordinary citizens who sell firearms as dealers, subjecting them to rigorous licensing and background checks.

Judge Kacsmaryk has ordered the ATF to respond to the motion for preliminary relief by 5 p.m. tomorrow, May 14, 2024, with the plaintiffs’ reply due by the following day by 5 p.m. as well.

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Anti-Gunners’ Lawsuit Against Smith & Wesson Dismissed

A lawsuit brought against Smith & Wesson by anti-gun shareholders within the company was dismissed Monday in Nevada’s Clark County District Court.

On December 5, 2023, Breitbart News noted that shareholders disgruntled over Smith & Wesson’s continued manufacture of AR-15 platform rifles had filed the lawsuit.

Plaintiffs in the case included the Adrian Dominican Sisters, Sisters of Bon Secours USA, Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, and Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus & Mary. Their suit claims that the defendants, who are Smith & Wesson board members and the company’s senior management team, “knowingly allowed the Company to become exposed to significant liability for intentionally violating federal, state, and local laws through its manufacturing, marketing, and sales of AR-15 style rifles and similar semiautomatic firearms.”

The plaintiffs acknowledged the lawsuit protection provided to firearm companies via the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). However, they claimed Smith & Wesson had foregone such protections by continuing to manufacture AR-15s after a Smith & Wesson AR-15 was used in a mass shooting.

On March 13, 2024, Breitbart News reported that Nevada’s Clark County District Court signaled no “substantial likelihood” Smith & Wesson would be found liable, saying the activist shareholders appear not to be aligned with the company’s best interest and requiring them to post a half-million-dollar bond to continue their suit.

The plaintiffs were instructed to post the bond by April 23, 2024, but they did not.

On May 6, 2024, Judge Joe Hardy pointed to their failure to post the bond as ordered and dismissed the lawsuit against Smith & Wesson.

The suit is Adrian Dominican Sisters v. Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc., No. A-23-882774-B in the District Court of Clark County, Nevada.

Insiders Reveal the Rot Within the NRA

AmmoLand News has been speaking to several insiders on the condition of anonymity at the National Rifle Association (NRA) and NRA Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) about the state of the historic gun rights organization since former Executive Vice President Wayner LaPierre and the NRA was found liable in a civil corruption case out of New York State. With the NRA Annual Meeting (NRAAM) coming up at the end of the month, many wonder about the health of the organization.

Recently, prominent figures inside the organization, like Marion Hammer, have had their pensions cut or have been forced out. Although some members see this as a possible “righting of the ship,” those on the inside claim it is a power struggle between the top brass at the NRA trying to protect themselves and former LaPierre loyalists. Since LaPierre left, insiders claim that lawyer William Brewer’s control over the NRA has grown by leaps and bounds. They claim he is pulling the strings of the organization.

Mr. Brewer is a high-priced attorney who practices out of New York and Texas. Brewer has had a long-term relationship with the NRA and has influence over the organization, which seems to have expanded over the past year, according to sources. Although Brewer represents the gun rights organization, he has also donated thousands of dollars to anti-gun candidates like Beto O’Rourke, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton. Insiders believe he has control over interim CEO and Executive Vice President Andrew Arulanandam.

Sources have reported that the NRA is forcing out those who do not comply. One of the first pushed out for speaking their minds was long-time board member Buz Mills, who wrote a letter to the Board of Directors in January calling the organization out for abusing the membership funds instead of being good stewards of the money given to the NRA by people concerned with protecting their gun rights.

“Again, I emphasize, it was not miscreant’s money, and it was not the facilitator’s money,” Mills wrote in his letter to the Board. “It was the MONEY OF OUR MEMBERS and the MONEY provided by the BENEVOLENCE OF OUR DONORS. There is something deeply wrong when you continually permit and encourage this serial abuse.”

Mills might have been one of the first to be pushed out, but he would not be the last to be exiled from the gun rights group. Our sources say other staff members have been fired for speaking out against alleged abuses by the organization. According to insiders, the State and local lobbying groups have been gutted, and the Southeast Director is leaving this month. AmmoLand News was told by former and current staff that anyone who questions the establishment thinking is risking their careers within the NRA.

One person who has questioned the NRA publicly was NRA Board member Willes Lee. Mr. Lee was in line to become the organization’s next President before questioning the NRA establishment. Several insiders told AmmoLand News that the NRA bylaws were changed to allow Charles Cotton to continue as President to avoid Lee from taking over the office. Many believe that the act was that of self-protection instead of protecting the NRA and Second Amendment rights of its members.

The NRA-ILA has always operated semi-autonomously from the rest of the organization, but that has changed in recent years. Insiders have told us that the National Rifle Association is calling the shots more than ever. The lack of autonomy led to Jason Ouimet’s departure from the head of the ILA. When Ouimet left, it was a sign to many lobbyists that it was time to get off “a sinking ship.

Randy Kozuch is now running the ILA, but people on the inside complain about a lack of leadership and feel that NRA is handcuffing the lobbying wing. The ILA has also been having trouble fundraising, which has hurt lobbying efforts. Our sources inside the NRA also claim that the NRA has been filtering money away from the ILA and its lobbying efforts. Sources on Capitol Hill have also told AmmoLand News that the NRA’s influence is a shadow of what it once was, although other gun rights groups have stepped up their lobbying effort since there seems to be a power vacuum.

The leading lobbyist is a contractor named Raymond White, who is being paid as a consultant by the NRA-ILA. Mr. White and Kozuch have a long history of working together. Although acting and being paid as a consultant, we have not been able to determine the amount of money that the ILA is paying White. Morale at the ILA is at an all-time low, with many employees leaving or looking to leave the organization.

AmmoLand News has also been told that former Congressman Bob Barr will be the next President of the NRA. Mr. Barr is currently on the Board of Directors and is the only one that AmmoLand News knows of who has had a negligent discharge of a firearm. According to our sources at the NRA, Mr. Barr is a Brewer loyalist.

There have been talks about shrinking the Board, but our sources do not believe that will happen. Our sources state that at least 80% of the Board is more concerned about self-interest and self-protection rather than the overall health of the NRA. The bylaws would have to be changed to shrink the Board, and there is no will to change them. While some in the gun community think the court will appoint an overseer, and that overseer could be an anti-gun appointee, the members of the Board do not believe it will happen. Multiple sources have told AmmoLand News that many on the Board act like the NRA is there to cater to them instead of them working for the NRA membership and to further gun rights.

Not all hope is lost for the NRA. All four of the reform candidates have won seats on the Board of Directors. The only question is, will they have enough influence to change things at the historic gun rights organization, or is the NRA a lost cause?

Boy Scouts of America changes name after 114 years to ‘boost inclusion’

“Scouting America”

Comment O’ The Day:

BSA was worried about losing donations and membership because they weren’t “inclusive” enough.

As a non-secular organization God was at their core belief. The BSA was totally inclusive provided you believed in God. Didn’t matter which one, as long as you believed. Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, etc., all at a place within BSA. That was why Boy Scouts is a world wide organization.

But then atheists decided to tell what was essentially a religious group that they had to put aside their religious beliefs. That’s like atheists telling the Roman Catholic Church they had to accept non-believers and accommodate them, altering sermons, Bible studies, etc.

Then came allowing homosexual scout leaders. What a recipe for disaster, especially after the BSA already had a lot of baggage with male scout leaders molesting male scouts. Which no matter how much spin you put on it is homosexual pedophilia.

Then they had to allow girls and LBGTQEIEIO.

Somewhere along this slow motion train wreck the LDS, who were a huge subset of BSA, decided to have the its church form their own scouts. They up and left and took about 1/6th of all BSA revenue with them. Which ironically is what those trying to morph scouting to fit them should have done – form their own groups.

Now the perplexed leaders of BSA are renaming it to ‘Scouting America’, in order to further alienate their membership and donors.

This is nearing the end. Only a matter of time before they auger in. Another classic moral institution destroyed by the Church of Woke, Altar of Inclusiveness and Temple of Moloch.

This is what happens when you compromise your core principles. Pretty soon, you have no principles left.