When Missouri Senate Bill 656 was introduced in 2016, it was relatively modest legislation that proposed capping the amount county sheriffs could charge for a concealed handgun permit, Reuters reports.
By the time it passed, with both houses of the state legislature overturning the governor’s veto, it had become one of the most expansive gun-rights laws in the country.
The gun lobby fought hard to pass the bill. The group some lawmakers credited with providing crucial momentum was not so much the National Rifle Association, the powerful national lobbying organization, but rather the Missouri Firearms Coalition, an aggressive grassroots operation founded in 2015.
“It’s always kind of interesting when you see a lot of people in the gun control community talk about how radical the NRA is. There’s an entire movement on the other side of the NRA … We’re done compromising.” ~ Greg Pruett, president of the Idaho Second Amendment Alliance
The Missouri Firearms Coalition, is another such firearm advocates group in the U.S. that believes the NRA is too timid and that is why they formed to fight for their firearm rights. The MFC was founded in the summer of 2015 by Missourians who are sick and tired of politicians campaigning on a pro-gun platform and then failing to fight to advance a pro-gun platform, once safely in Jefferson City.
Too many organizations exist to serve the interest of the legislators in the Capitol – not their members.
We will expose gun control and anti-gun legislators at every turn. But we’ll also let our members know who’s simply refusing to advance pro-gun legislation. We’ll do this using email updates, our social media platform, direct mail, radio ads and more!
Missouri Firearms Coalition political adviser Aaron Dorr says the NRA fought against constitutional carry for years, considering it too much of a longshot, and only came on board once passage was certain. The Missouri law not only authorized constitutional carry, it made Missouri a “stand your ground” state, extending the right to lethal self-defense outside the home, even when retreating is an option.
State-level alternatives to the NRA have been created and become a hit in individual states this decade and are active in at least 15 states. These groups believe that the NRA is too political at times and that the NRA becomes complacent on firearm rights and that it is the responsibility of firearm owners to advocate and fight to retain firearm laws in the United States.
Chris “Badger” Thomas is a Veteran who served our country as an Army Combat Medic.
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