GunsAmerica Talks About Defeating Bloomberg with NSSF — SHOT Show 2015

At the 2015 SHOT Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, I had the chance to catch up with my buddy Michael Bazinet, the Director of Public Affairs for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the firearms industry trade association that puts on SHOT (Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show, in case you were wondering what “SHOT” stood for).

Mike’s a great guy and his job is to basically field questions from the mainstream media on guns, gun ownership and the gun community. Needless to say, he spends a lot of his time enlightening jaded journalists who have been indoctrinated with the anti-gun narrative propagated by former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg. As it turns out guns aren’t really evil personified, who knew?!” Joking aside, Mike’s job is a vital one. He helps to set the record straight on both the benefits of and the quintessential need for the Second Amendment.

We talked briefly about the show, the state of the industry, demographic trends within the gun community and how to stop the forward momentum of the Bloomberg machine, which gained ground on the universal background check front after passing I-594 in Washington State in November.

To give you a quick rundown, the show went great. It was the second highest attendance ever, with nearly 64,000 folks on site at the Sands Expo Center. Last year was the highest, with 67,000 attendees, but as Mike pointed out there was a concerted effort this year to limit the number of “gun tourists” and to make the show more business friendly (Trust me, that’s a great idea. SHOT is a total zoo at times with 64,000 attendees. I couldn’t imagine how crazy it’d be with 70,000-plus milling about the showroom floor).

As for 2014, it was another stellar year. Particularly around the holidays, where there was a huge spike in sales. As Mike pointed out, “Sales at the end of the year were the second highest ever.” I believe this bodes well for 2015. But we shall see. As Mike said, the year is still very young.


A view on the showroom floor. (Photo: NSSF)

Demographics are changing. “Twenty percent of the consumer base is woman, which represents an historical high,” said Mike. Another good sign that the gun community is growing and that the industry is breaking the stereotype that gun ownership is a male-dominated niche.

Lastly, with respect to Bloomberg, Mike was candid about how to stop the gun-control czar in his footsteps.

“What is absolutely essential, is that residents in each state become active because you are the people, the gun owners, the industry within a state, that has the most effect on stopping that sort of forward motion,” explained Mike.

“We can help from a national level and for sure we will but we need activists, grassroots people in the state to stand up and talk to your neighbors, your family members to stop these ineffective laws from going forward,” he continued.

In other words, the NSSF can’t do it all. Nor should it for that matter, in my opinion. It takes activism on all fronts to stop Bloomberg, particularly at the grassroots level. If we are to defeat Bloomberg, we have to do it at the local level first.

What questions do you have for the NSSF?  

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 19 comments… add one }
  • dit pook January 28, 2015, 7:25 pm

    I think you are doing this all wrong. Instead of defending the second amendment you should be attacking the first amendment. Look at the state of journalism today. They print invective lies that destroy people and the most they have to do is print a retraction on the back page. How many times can you guess the political leanings of the owners and editors by the choice of words and hostile language instead of balanced reporting? Remember that idiot newspaper owner in New York who printed the names of all the gun owners in his area? Why isn’t he fined and forced to leave the news business?

    Why not do to the media what they do to gun owners? Let’s make it mandatory for all of them to take a safety course in accountability for their writing. Make them get licensed. If they print something wrong, take away their license for reckless behavior. Drinking problem? (What newsman doesn’t have one?) you can’t get a media license because you don’t have the proper character.

    We said there is free speech in this country, but when that free speech is calculated lies and manipulation, as violent as an assault on someone, it should be punishable with prison terms. And if they want to print our addresses, why hasn’t anyone printed Bloomberg’s yet?

  • Ray January 28, 2015, 4:07 pm

    I would like to know what steps if any are being taken to change or eliminate the NFA ? Are there any plans to take on the BATFE in terms of their ever expanding redefining of the English language as it applies to firearms ? Are there any plans to attack the legitimacy of the BATFE in regards to their illegal and ever expanding scope of law enforcement activities ? These are questions I’d like to ask and get some answers to. To many gun owners and organizations seem to be jumping from crisis to crisis instead of looking at any long term plans. I understand that we need to fight an win the small battles. I also think there needs to be an effort at all levels to combine the forces of all the gun owners and gun rights organizations so that we can stand stronger and speak louder. The infighting I see in forums like this is very disheartening. It makes it very difficult to take on our enemies when we can’t stop fighting with each other.
    That my opinion for what it’s worth.

    • rooker January 28, 2015, 8:18 pm

      Its like this, I am a pawn shop owner and gun dealer, I have been sh-t on from the banks and the land lords. The gov. putting pressure on the banks (bank — America, and in turn the land lord has to take it out on you to keep his business running.
      I am now in my 3rd. location in a year and a half. Loosing my business for sure.
      It is happing around the corner and under the radar from the everyday JOE on the street-. The crap has to stop.

  • phil box January 28, 2015, 3:37 pm

    i think it might be possible to defeat the antigun nutcases by reminding people that self defense from
    muslim terrorists is best done with a gun. stress the fact that these “peace loving people” rape and mutulate
    every female regardless of age. they torture for the fun of it and their barbaric actions can best be stopped with a bullet.
    the other thought is to protect us from a government bent of destroying and revoking all of our freedoms.
    hitler did it, soros was a brown shoe under hitler, so applying that knowledge with a malleable puppet(obama) and this country is on a slippery slope to destruction.

  • Early Ray January 28, 2015, 1:53 pm

    So…Michael Bazinet had no concrete ideas as to how to confront Michael Bloomberg except the hyperbole that individuals must do it as activist at the grassroots level. Quite the opposite, it must be done on a national level by NRA. And I agree with the poster here that asserts we must make contributions to NRA. I personally suggest giving 10% of every transaction to the NRA whether it is purchasing ammo or buying or selling a firearm. Only they are between us and Bloomberg. And yes, I know there are other outstanding organizations…I give to at least one other. As for the reason given why attendance is down at SHOT, that they are purging “tourist” attendees, that is ridiculous or idiotic. Why would you squander an opportunity to embrace as many gun lovers as possible. I call bs on this article and SHOT. Be real and be truthful.

    • Russ January 28, 2015, 2:31 pm

      Ya that “tourist” comment was puzzling.
      And you have to love Midway USA’s; NRA round up. Where you can round up you purchase price to the nearest next dollar amount, and donate that change to the NRA.
      Larry Potterfield is a great example for retailers to follow.

  • Marty January 28, 2015, 1:30 pm

    What I would like to know is why nobody talks about the elephant in the room. Bloomberg, Feinstein, Lieberman, Lantos,Lautenerg, Shumer, Kohl, Rothman, Nadler, Levin are all Jewish politicians WHO HAVE DRAFTED OR PRESENTED LEGISLATION ON STRICTER GUN CONTROL. Why are thes jewish lawmakers spearheading the abolishment of our 2nd amendment? I don’t want to sound anti semitic but Come on! This is like the jewish bolsheviks in Russia during the early 1900s.

    • Administrator January 28, 2015, 1:52 pm

      Yea but Obama and Biden aren’t Jewish, and neither are most of the leaders in the states that have passed the strictest gun control. Oh, and the founder of GunsAmerica is Jewish and personally answering your moronish prozac infused comment. Secular Jews have always been a primary component of the useful idiot brigade and they are still that today, but they don’t attain the key power positions, ever. Morons like you are what give those secular Jews the ability to point their finger and play the race card against legitimate G-d fearing patriots who understand that it isn’t about the Jews. It’s about the international bankers who use the secular humanists, many of whom are non-religious Jews, as political tools to do their bidding, no different from the way they use blacks and homosexuals. If you aren’t a government shill, which you may be, it is fools like you who drive those groups into circling the wagons so that they will do whatever the bankers want them to do.

      • Early Ray January 28, 2015, 2:02 pm

        Well said…but I never quite understood the nexus to bankers, international or otherwise and the limited impact it would make in tge scheme of things. It starts sounding like Rocky and Bullwinkle’s Boris Bedinoff and Natasha. I could always see that they were up to something but could never figure out what or why other than it was a nefarious deed.

        • Just1Spark January 28, 2015, 4:16 pm

          SO GLAD to see smart people waking up and speaking out! It is BANKERS! What confuses most folks is, its not ‘bankers’ like we are familiar with.
          Look at it this way. Every time we go to war with some new crap hole in the middle east, eventually the common consensus (after the true reasons turn out false) is that ‘we are there for their oil’. Or insert ‘another natural resource’ or ‘evil dictator’ reason.
          Thats just either our false assumption, or a clever smoke screen.
          We are there for their BANKS. Look at every country we have decimated or ‘liberated’.
          Take a look at what percentage of those countries soveriegnly owned their own banks, and issued their own currencys.
          If you want to control the world, you control the issue of the world money. PERIOD. I would always laugh when someone would say, ‘here we go, back to the middle east, after more oil’.

          NO! Why would you concern yourself with getting dirty stealing oil. When you can just abolish their banking system. Insert your bank. Issue your currency, and BOOM. You dont need to own their oil. You OWN THEM! Every single thing in that market, is then exchanged with YOUR MONEY that YOU ISSUE. There is no scheme better.

    • Russ January 28, 2015, 2:19 pm

      Oy Vey!……
      For the life of me, I can never understand the hate for Jews.
      I’m not Jewish, but I like them very much.
      Great values.
      Much nicer people than myself.
      Some could learn a great deal from their examples.

      • ditpook January 28, 2015, 10:08 pm

        I like them too. They have always treated me very well, which puzzles me why Bloomberg has taken to the propaganda tactics of the Nazis. It is surprising Goebbels and Bloomberg have so much n common.

  • Russ January 28, 2015, 12:41 pm

    No question, just advise.
    The NSSF should start more programs for youth education and be more involved in public schools.
    We need the NRA to be in control of all laws having to do with firearms in the United States.
    This is what both organizations are most qualified to handle, and no one else could do better.

    We could donate time and money to toward these organizations to help make that happen.
    Also help out by taking a newcomer shooting and maybe gift them on occasion with memberships to these organizations.

    By the way, couldn’t you tell by Director Michael Bazinet’s reaction to your question, that Bloomberg is just another obstacle and needs no special attention?
    Everyone know’s the guys position, and the fight’s not all about him.
    The obstructionists name is sickening and needs not to be uttered.

  • petru sova January 28, 2015, 11:21 am

    Quote: “In other words, the NSSF can’t do it all. Nor should it for that matter, in my opinion. It takes activism on all fronts to stop Bloomberg, particularly at the grassroots level. If we are to defeat Bloomberg, we have to do it at the local level first.”

    If gun owners had any brains at all they would all be joining the NRA as they (not people at the local level) are the only outfit big enough to even attempt to stop the super rich Bloomberg. Of course most gun owners would rather lose their guns and their rights rather than fork over a few pennies to the NRA in contributions or heaven forbid join the NRA which is the only organization that has done 99 per cent of the work in regards to helping us keep our gun rights. History has proven it over and over again. And there is the Gun Industry itself which makes millions of dollars of profit each year. Why are they not contributing big sums to the NRA. Perhaps they are all planning to convert over to making bicycles in the near future.

  • Joe January 28, 2015, 6:53 am

    No questions just one comment.
    More work must be done to educate the residents of blue states so they don’t fall into the open pit trap that Washington fell into with little input from the NRA who seemed to be taking a look see attitude.

  • Jerry Jones January 28, 2015, 5:56 am

    I think it would would be very beneficial for the NSSF to organize and offer a free, one day training/safety/shooting class to Journalists/Media members to educate them and dissuade them from leaning on their prejudices when they report stories involving guns. They should be taught to recognize and understand the difference between types of guns, and how they work…..getting them to understand what semi-automatic means would be huge in fighting the propaganda…..getting them to a range to see, or actually shoot a firearm would really change their perspective…..especially if they shot a few rounds through the different types of actions gun fire with.

    • mtman2 January 28, 2015, 10:34 am

      Exactly the correct way to turn hearts and minds from not knowing to then
      actually know all on “this-side” of exactly what’s going down and what’s at stake!
      This followed by Founders quotes on “The Right to bear arms”……..and the true purpose of it’s guarantee!

      In all publicly viewed national forums with top anti 2nd-Amendment people- THIS QUESTION SHOULD BE ASKED::

      -> “If you truly believe the average American should be deprived of guaranteed 2nd-Amendment Rights- will you here now vow first to totally do away with your armed protection in ALL scenarios and at all times???

      They probably won’t, as they’ll say that “these are professionally trained for personal protection”. So then ASK THEM::
      “What makes you more important than any American protecting property, self, family, friend or neighbor ???”

      Not said, but the thought will be- “Because I have tons of money and you’re a peasant peon and should do as your told.”

    • Evan January 28, 2015, 11:10 am

      Great idea. The only problem would be getting them to agree. Still surely worth a shot though.

    • JOHN GRAY January 28, 2015, 3:32 pm

      that is the kind of thinker we need.

Leave a Comment

Send this to a friend