Dear Governor Cuomo:

While I respect your right to have an opinion and to express it, I must take exception not only to your statements, but to the questionable use of your official powers to engage in what can only be described as coercion and extortion under the color of law.

Should the allegations presented against you and Ms. Vullo be verified in a court of open law, I would sincerely hope the the U.S. Department of Justice open an investigation into your actions. If the investigation does confirm what the allegations imply, I would also hope that the federal government files criminal charges against you and Ms. Vullo and prosecutes the case to the fullest extent of the law.

The claims you have made about the NRA are untrue. The claims you have made about the Carry Guard insurance program are also untrue.

The NRA does not sell firearms. It does sell ammunition at its indoor shooting range in Fairfax, Virginia but does not supply firearms.

The NRA is not a “front” for firearms manufacturers. Manufacturers of firearms and firearm accessories have their own group, the 8,000-member National Shooting Sport Foundation, which is headquartered in Newtown, Connecticut. An examination of the NRA’s IRS form 990, for the most recent year available with show that the millions of NRA members are the source of over 60% of the association’s revenue. Member dues alone make up nearly half of all income. Program fees, sales of NRA-branded merchandise and subscriptions make up the difference. All gifts, extra donations and grants combined to hit 22.8% of total revenue and that figure includes extra contributions by members and bequests. The primary source of income from the gun companies is for paid advertising in NRA media.

The NRA is also not a shill for gun companies. As mentioned in the preceding paragraph, the industry has its own lobbying group. The fact that the interests of the two organizations frequently align is not surprising as NRA members want a strong industry to provide the products they want and the industry wants a market unfettered by needless and ineffective legislation that does nothing to enhance public safety but penalizes lawful gun owners.

A bit of research on your part would have revealed that the NRA in the past has been openly critical of some manufacturers including both Sturm, Ruger & Co. and Smith & Wesson.

The NRA represents its members. We may not agree with everything the association does, but we remain members because we agree with its objectives.

The Carry Guard insurance program does not shield a person that has committed an illegal act. It does assist persons who have used a firearm in a lawful manner for the purposes of self-defense. As some people are charged with offenses even though they complied with the law, the insurance covers legal assistance.

Neither the NRA nor the Carry Guard program promote violence or any illegal act. There is no evidence that your claims to the contrary have any basis in fact.

While you are free to make whatever claims you wish, whether or not they are true, use of your official powers to conduct a vendetta is abuse of the authority of your office and is illegal.

Sincerely,

Bill Cawthon

Professional writer. Passionately interested in facts. Founder of onewordtexas.org

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