December 21, 2007
Why the NRA Should Try Being Reasonable
By David E. Petzal and Phil Bourjaily
Let's start with point one. If someone mentions compromise, the next phrase out of their mouths is usually "reasonable gun controls." I assure you that the measures Sarah Brady and Barbara Boxer and Chuck Schumer consider reasonable are quite different from what you consider reasonable.
People in the gun-control biz know nothing about guns, hate guns, and harbor a profound fear and mistrust of people who own them. It goes far, far beyond public policy; it is visceral. I cordially invite Mr. Feldman to achieve a meaningful compromise with this bunch, and I advise him to bring lunch because he's going to need it.
About point two: Wonder why Mr. Feldman quoted LaPierre's income for 2005, and not 04 or 06 or 07? It's because an NRA executive incentive plan paid off in that year and one time only, LaPierre did make $950,000. In any other year he makes far, far less, and in fact is paid a lot lower than many heads of other special-interest groups in Washington.
But I would not care much if Wayne LaPierre did pull down nearly a million every year or if the NRA parking lot teemed with Bugattis and Bentleys. Washington runs on money, and every special interest group pays people to keep the gutless twerps in Congress in a state of constant fear. Those who do this successfully are awarded very large sums of money--because they are worth it.
As long as Mr. La Pierre and company remain as terrifying as the Black Death they merit whatever they earn. If they keep Chuck Schumer well supplied with stomach acid they can have my contribution any time.