Rob McNally, Chairman of the Board & Tim Andrews, Board Member at Large
In recent years we’re all aware of the concerns many have regarding a clear understanding of our country’s traditions and values — whether it’s disrespecting our flag or our national anthem. It can be blamed on poor parenting or even our educational system. Why is there such disregard for our country’s traditions and values? What is the solution? It takes little to point the finger of blame or to rally like minds to the faults of this country. It takes another approach altogether to develop solutions for those problems.
Organizations are made of various personalities. Sometimes those personalities disagree with how to implement solutions to problems, or worse, spend time pointing those fingers rather than developing the necessary solutions to society’s ills. Typically, when that happens splits occur. The best example of this is how our religious denominations have occurred over the centuries. The only time such a division occurs is when there is a split in philosophy, not so much in the ultimate goal.
We have recently experienced just such events within groups of Second Amendment supporters and their organizations. Ultimately, the goal still remains the same. The only difference is in how those in the various organizations believe we should get there. Thus far, none of us have been all that successful. I will advocate that we need to refocus on working together rather than focusing on the differences between us. Too many times those differences are the focus and drive any discussion. Unfortunately, even four or five voices focusing on differences distract the bulk of the organization from the ultimate goal. Truly, if the goal is the ultimate destination, then why should the focus be on intermediate obstacles? Address such obstacles, determine solutions for the good of the organization and move on.
As Tony Robbins has said, “Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach.” Financial responsibility is certainly a key factor in any organization, but when that focus over-takes the organization’s focus, those involved lose track of pursuing revenue and other activities necessary in the final goal. For Second Amendment organizations such as our own, that final goal is restoring rights that have and are being removed from us consistently. Not only the rights guaranteed under the Second Amendment to our U.S. Constitution, but also those guaranteed under the First Amendment particularly the right to ‘petition the government for a redress of grievances’; the Fourth Amendment ‘the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures’; the Fifth Amendment ‘…nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.’; the Ninth Amendment ‘The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.’; the Fourteenth Amendment ‘….No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.’…. The point here being that fiduciary responsibility is not in and of itself our goal, but an avenue toward that goal and a responsibility to our members. While focusing on that responsibility and maintaining its integrity, we must still pursue revenue to progress toward the ultimate goal.
As we all know, it takes revenue to make things happen. The thing that most allows revenue pursuit is commitment to the ultimate goal; not revenue pursuit in and of itself. That commitment requires allthose people this article began about. EVERY organization, EVERY person who is willing to focus on the goal. No organization can afford to be waylaid by those who do not demonstrate this commitment. The Scottish author William Hutchison Murry once said “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.”.
The point that needs be made here is we must all, every Second Amendment organization, be unified and committed in that ultimate goal while pursuing different avenues of approach to it. Meanwhile, every member of individual organizations must be committed internally to one another. We cannot afford to pursue distracting avenues which misdirect us from our ultimate goal…. the violation of rights which we are experiencing as mentioned previously. No one organization, or subdivision of an organization, can hope to have any true result toward that goal without such commitment. An American writer, John D. MacDonald was quoted as saying “At times it seems as if arranging to have no commitment of any kind to anyone would be a special freedom. But in fact, the whole idea works in reverse. The most deadly commitment of all is to be committed only to one’s self. Some come to realize this after they are in the nursing home.”
In other words, our strength is in our unity, not our differences. Commitment is primary and the goal of resurrecting our lost rights the ultimate goal. That entails several factors. Our members; their involvement and their commitment; their willingness to get involved beyond the basic membership level. Their seeking opportunities to become further involved beyond their membership fees. The voters; shifting the apathy and lack of confidence that exists these days in the ‘system’. Education (the last word in our acronym S.C.O.P.E.) comes down to a one-onone scenario more often than not. Unfortunately, the bulk of our society does not greatly involve itself in publications, social media or internet access to the news. We are awash daily in information, but a minority of people actually engage in it beyond the briefest exposure. Much like ‘looking’ and ‘seeing’ are two distinctly different functions.
So join us! Or join another organization better to your liking! But actually ‘join’ beyond putting membership fees forward and expecting someone else to commit for you. Take that commitment upon yourself. With your time or with your money, or both. Spread the word. Become a leader, an organizer, or participate on the local level in getting out and conversing with those who have chosen apathy or action. Get involved! We ALL need you. We need your commitment! As tennis great Martina Navratilova said so well, “The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved; the pig is committed.”
Your donations can be submitted at https://scopeny2a.org/donate-to-SCOPE. Your interest in volunteering can be directed to your local chapter chair or your other Directors on the Board at the state level. All contacts are listed on our website.