Yesterday, the world’s worst party guests, the National Rifle Association, released a statement on its website addressing the number of corporate partnerships it’s lost in the wake of the Parkland, Florida mass shooting, a tragedy which may very well signal a turning point in the conversation about how guns are legislated in America.
Before now, that conversation was almost completely dominated by the NRA itself, which in 2017 alone spent $5.1 million on pro-gun lobbying. One of the ways that the organization has accrued so much cash is by incentivizing memberships through acting as a Triple A for gun owners, arranging for corporate discounts and passing the savings down to their members. It’s a tactic that’s helped drive up its numbers in recent years, but as more and more companies sever ties with the organization, it may very well decrease the NRA’s ability to buy influence in Washington.
In response to all of this, the NRA seems to have adopted an official policy of Extremely Not Mad, No You’re The One Who’s Mad Here. In their statement responding to the “number of companies [that] have decided to sever their relationship with the NRA,” the organization accused their former partners of “decid[ing] to punish” NRA members “in a shameful display of political and civic cowardice.” Meanwhile, NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch appeared in an official NRA video in which she very calmly and Not-Mad-ly criticized the media, stating, “People are slandered and libeled and defamed and smeared and characters are impugned simply because someone wants to present something untrue for the sake of an ideological goal. [...] That's not what our country should be about,” as anti-NRA tweets from various liberal commentators flashed across the screen.
On Facebook, the NRA continues to show how Not Mad it is by defiantly posting links to Loesch’s speeches and media appearances, and even going to far as directly respond to a single commenter for making fun of them:
What we’re seeing now is the NRA entering full-on troll mode, doing the best they can to make outrageous statements designed to antagonize anyone to the left of, say, Tucker Carlson, presumably hoping that the responses their statements receive are so irrational that they make the NRA seem logical by comparison. It’s an attempt to distract from the fact that their current, anything-goes position on gun policy is quickly sliding into irrelevance. In other words, the NRA would really like to avoid having a conversation about guns.