Interview Exclusive: Outdoor Journalist Calls for Hunters to Leave NRA

Interviews This Week

Below you’ll find a brief Q&A I recently did with hunter and outdoor enthusiast Wes Siler. Mr. Siler caught my attention after writing an article calling for hunters to leave the nation’s preeminent gun-rights organization: The NRA.

I don’t agree with his call to action.  Lemme be clear on that.  But I was curious to learn more about Wes and his unique perspective.  Too often, nowadays, we’re inclined to write off a fellow gun owner who doesn’t exactly agree with us as a chuckleheaded Fudd, instead of, well you know, having a reasonable conversation about our differences.  The older I get the more inclined I am to do the latter, which I hope plays some small part in bringing the 2A community closer together.

Anyways, after reading the interview feel free to add your own thoughts below in the comment section. I’m interested in hearing your opinions on this matter as well.

Interview Exclusive: Outdoor Journalist Calls for Hunters to Leave NRA

Wes Siler. You can follow him on Instagram. (Photo: Ben Godwin).

S.H. Blannelberry: Before we get to your “controversial” article, for lack of a better word, entitled, “It’s Time for Hunters to Leave the NRA,” I think what a lot of people will want to know is where do you stand on the 2A? More specifically, do you support bans on commonly owned and widely popular modern sporting rifles? Do you own AR-15s? Do you support any gun control laws?

Wes Siler: I own an AR in 5.56 right now, and will probably build another one in a larger caliber this winter. I’ll also get a CCW permit (and a P365) for the first time later this year, now that I don’t live in California anymore. I believe that the second amendment was written to enable the individual to defend himself against a tyrannical government, foreign invasion, and from smaller threats, and do not support bans on any type of weapon or feature for that reason.

Having said that, gun control laws are inevitable, and ultimately are something that even the staunchest 2A supporters ultimately agree on at some level. It’s probably not a good idea to keep a bucket of hand grenades in the trunk of your car, for instance. And even Ted Nugent doesn’t want anyone but security carrying inside one of his concerts. Discussing ways in which we can work to make all of us safer (call it working towards a more perfect union) is something that the people who are invested in the gun industry, and who actually know a thing or two about guns, should be involved in. I see the gun world’s utter refusal to participate in any gun control legislation at all as an abdication of duty on their part. These regulations are going to get passed, and would heavily benefit from the input of experts if they’re actually going to be effective at preventing crime, rather than just burdening us lawful and responsible gun owners. If we continue to sit out this conversation, it will continue to take place without us.

S.H. Blannelberry: Okay, let’s talk about the article. You’re calling for hunters to leave the National Rifle Association because the NRA has evolved over the years from a marksmanship/gun safety organization to a fear-mongering political animal primarily doing the bidding of corporate interests (I’m paraphrasing your position, to be clear). While there’s little doubt that today’s NRA isn’t our daddy’s NRA, couldn’t I argue that the gun lobby, though imperfect, is still the best, most-effective organization when it comes to protecting our right to keep and bear arms?

Wes Siler: You paraphrase that excellently. As a patriot, I can’t look at one of Dana Loesch’s thinly veiled calls for violence in response to a political disagreement and not be angered and saddened. The rich, and corporations have successfully driven a wedge between the American people, and we should all be working towards unity, rather than falling for the con. Ultimately, our interests are all aligned. We want economic opportunity, freedom, and happiness. Painting that red or blue doesn’t change what those things are. Any organization or individual who attempts to manipulate you and I with fear and lies is nothing but our enemy.

S.H. Blannelberry: In 2013, on the heels of Sandy Hook, it was the NRA, after all, that beat back federal gun control legislation that would have placed bans on black rifles and magazines capable of carrying more than 10 rounds along with universal background checks. Same could be said after Parkland. No new major federal laws were enacted (minus a ban on bump stocks, of course). Those were huge victories for the pro-2A community. Which raises the question, where would we be without the modern NRA? Your thoughts?

Wes Siler: I’d argue that the well being of our children is much more important than how many rounds we get to carry in a magazine. I’d like to see all of us work towards making sure there’s no more Sandy Hooks or Parklands before I’d like to see any more insistence from the NRA that guns aren’t part of the problem.

S.H. Blannelberry: Furthermore, while the NRA has made small donations to GOP politicians who have called for privatizing public land isn’t that a lesser evil than supporting the alternative, Left-wing candidates who would like to completely repeal 2A rights or infringe upon? To be clear, the NRA does not, at least to my knowledge, support selling off public land to Big Oil. Sure, some of the candidates it supports do, but that’s not the gun lobby’s official position. Also, on a practical level and from a pro-2A perspective, wouldn’t you rather deal with another Mike Lee (R-Utah) or Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) versus another Schumer (D-NY) or Feinstein (D-CA) or Pelosi (D-CA) in Congress? Seems to me that Lee and Chaffetz would be more amenable to changing their tune on the public lands issue than Schumer, Feinstein, and Pelosi would be with respect to gun control.

SEE ALSO: What I Love & Hate About the SIG Sauer P365

Wes Siler: It’s really hard to track political donations right now. What’s publicly listed doesn’t add up to what’s being spent. So, the way I see it is that support is support. If the NRA financially sponsors a person’s campaign, and publicly endorses that person, then they are responsible for what the person then goes on to do. Why is the NRA calling Lee a friend of the hunter, when in fact he’s our worst enemy? There is no hunting without public land, yet he’s stated that he wants to destroy all public lands. There is not a middle ground there. And, by making guns a partisan issue, the NRA is making guns the enemy of half the country. Again, we need unity, not division. Ask yourself why the NRA is lying to you about this issue. A platform with merit does not require lies to support it.

S.H. Blannelberry: What I’m getting at is that instead of calling for a mass exodus from the NRA, shouldn’t we just put some pressure on Wayne and Chris to push back against those candidates who seek to hand over public land to the states? Wouldn’t this be more effective that fracturing the existing apparatus? Or do you think the NRA as currently constituted is beyond repair?

Wes Siler: It’s just too far gone. I can’t look at the platform of fear and hate and misinformation that the NRA is spreading and hold anything but animosity towards that organization. If guns are going to continue to be a part of our society, then we need a cogent argument for them, not just a bunch of crackheads trying to scare you into giving them $40.

S.H. Blannelberry: Lastly, the Russia thing doesn’t seem to bother many gun-rights supporters, at least from my reading of the situation. I feel like a lot of readers think, “So the NRA took donations from a handful of wealthy Russians using that money to help a pro-gun, pro-hunting president get elected. Big deal.” What do you say to gun owners and hunters who are unbothered by the Russia allegations?

Wes Siler: Putting foreign money into American politics is treason, plain and simple. There was a time when pro-gun, pro-hunting Presidents stood up against our enemies. What would Ronald Reagan have had to say about the Russians turning our politicians against the American people?


End of interview.  Thanks to Wes for taking the time to correspond.  So, what say you?

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  • Dale McCart December 7, 2020, 1:28 am

    I live in rural okla. Growing up I had a neighbor that was a Bronze and Silver Star recipient of WW2. He was not married and lived with his folks on the family farm He was a quiet man that went to Church on Sundays and then come home to tend the farm I knew of his service because he would get his medals out from time to time and talk about the war As he would talk he would start to cry not uncontrollably but tears would stream down his face This is 25 to 30 years after the war He talked about his best friend being killed at the end of the war and about a kid his words he was trying to watch out for that was backed over by a tank plus other stories but those two always came to the front and how he felt some responsibility You and I both know otherwise but not him I didnt know it until after his death but when he first came home his mom and dad thought he would kill himself He had nightmares for years and when they got really bad his dad would go get a friend of his in the middle of the night and they would take him down to the V A hospital . They would keep him a few days and send him home . This went on until his death at the age of 88. Iwas just a kid but it had a lasting impression on me to this day . If he could join the army he wasnt drafted go through what he went through and still be the man that he was the people of this country I thought and still do owed that man for what he endured He didnt think that i did and I still do . I am glad he is not alive today to see what we have allowed this country to become When did we rewrite the rules about what is right and what is not acceptable within the laws of this country Have our morals declined to the point that the left is just above the point the Nazi were when they started killing jews In one town they shot so many people they ran out of ammunition so they stopped until more was brought in and then they continued. We are not to far from this today in my opinion i hope not but we will have to see i guess
    My point in all of this is these people that desecrate the flag and burn peoples stores up need to be brought to justice The same with anyone in the government that turned their head My fear is that unless the people of this country take a stand nothing will ever happen to them I would like to see Washington wake up some morning to a million armed patriots in the streets demanding the powers that be enforce the laws or let the patriots do it their choice But until something like that happens we will continue to regress into some 3rd world shit hole . Getting back to my neighbor what the left is doing is spitting in the face of everyone of those men and women and especially the ones that didnt come home from every war this country has fought in for the last 200 some odd years It pisses me off to the point i can hardley see straight
    My neighbor didnt ask for that but he went and suffered for it for the next 50 or 60 years And after all he went through you know what he wanted to be buried with He was buried with his Medals I bet the left cant even comprehend that

  • David R. July 22, 2020, 5:10 pm

    Siler’s points are all good ones, and all I see in response is a bunch of conspiracy-theory BS from a bunch of forgettable NRA kool-aid drinkers. Luckily this idiocy will die with you and the rest of us will get back to civil life. I got my first gun in 1974 and have bought several since, and no one from the government has ever come close to taking them away. My right to own firearms is protected by the Constitution, not the corrupt NRA.

    • Michael Ockinga January 25, 2021, 2:15 pm

      Your naivete will cost all patriotic Americans their Second Amendment rights. Siler is obviously a left wing loon. None of his points have any merit.

  • Dan Gore April 30, 2019, 1:33 pm

    Maybe lm not looking in the right place, but haven’t seen NRA Russia money. But Hillary Clinton and her foundation,groper Bill, got plenty from Russia. Democrats want total control of America and everyone here, so,no way to trying to compromise with them. Bill of Rights,to them,means nothing. Bill of Rights isn’t government granted,just affirmed naturall rights we already have. So this guy is totally wrong. Not giving my rights away without a fight

  • T.S. Thomas August 25, 2018, 9:33 pm

    Sad, another “blame the hardware” kind of guy.

    “I see the gun world’s utter refusal to participate in any gun control legislation at all as an abdication of duty on their part.”

    Might have something to do with gun controls causing more deaths where they get enacted.

    Just sad.

  • Dennis August 14, 2018, 6:49 pm

    So many NRA haters today!!!

    It is easy to see right thru this Liberal. Anyone who thinks that Liberals will talk fair about our gun rights is either Liberal themselves or just do not know how Liberals really think.

  • Paul LaRocque August 6, 2018, 2:46 pm

    The NRA, while not perfect, is the best tool available to defend against encroachments on the second amendment, period.

  • Al August 6, 2018, 1:35 pm

    He’s well indoctrinated, I’ll give him that.
    And he’s incredibly Naiveté, to believe that the ‘other side’ wants or will ask for help on legislation.
    Honestly, the man puts himself up as an educated fool.

  • Pat T August 1, 2018, 5:30 pm

    Siler’s principle emplyer is Outside mag owner Lawrence Burk ewhjo is a very very large Democrat contributor, who has supported candidates who
    a) oppose even Heller, meaning they oppose allowing a background checked person owning a five shot revolver to keep at home for self defense.
    b) Among Outside’s owner’s contributions are politicians who also oppose hunting.
    Besides Outside, Siler works for Conde Naste and Gawker publications which have published scores of articles calling for AR bans — yet Siler says he owns two ARs.

    Siler just has never lived anywhere in the US where his gun rights are affected. He seems not to even know that the NRA took a more robust position in the 1980’s a direct result of strong and huge spending by gun control lobby to support total gun bans.

  • Tom Balkwill August 1, 2018, 10:15 am

    First off what makes Mr. Wes an outdoor journalist??? I agree with almost all the comments posted hear and have a great idea. Why doesn’t Mr. Siler just take his knitting and macrame out to the woods and continue his outdoor journalism. Probably might have more credibility!!! Cracks me up he stands in the picture with a gun slung over his shoulder while speaking about gun control. It’s also ridiculous he would make an idiotic statement that because a lobby group donates to a candidate means they are responsible for their actions. I wish I had a dollar for everytime someone told me they were going to one thing but did something completely opposite. In my meager 68 yrs I thought that was a inherent human tendency. Especially when it comes to politicians!!! Oh I could go on but a lot of folks have already had some great comments!!

    It’s ironic that my wife and I had never owned a gun until a few years ago when she had a frightening confrontation. We live in the woods surrounded by deer, pigs, turkeys, coyotes, a variety of snakes and the rest of the usual wildlife but have never owned a gun because I’m not into hunting. I don’t begrudge anyone the hunting experience though and have even went on hunting trips with family and friends. It’s just not my thing. But then my wife had a threatening experience with of all things a human at the front door. It was this experience that prompted her to want a gun at the age of 60. Together we joined a gun course, did our classroom, got our CCP’s, took our time and researched different guns and finally purchased some. I built us a small outdoor gun range and have been having a ‘blast’!!

    Oh gosh what am I saying, it was the gun that tricked us into buying it not the sick deranged human that thought he could take advantage of a woman alone in her home. Oh damn never thought about making my 10 acres a gated community!!!! Stupid me.

    • Occam August 1, 2018, 8:15 pm

      Siler doesn’t even know the difference between shall issue and may issue and purports to know gun laws.

  • Vinny July 29, 2018, 8:32 pm

    Stiler is just another liberal plant. That he is a supposed outdoor writer (NOT a gun writer) and says he is a gun owner is just non-sense designed to give his freedom grabbing views more credibility.

    This guy is a fraud just like Tom King from NYSRPA who claims to be Pro 2A but is diverting funds from an NRA State affiliate for himself, his family and his friends.

  • Donald Crawford July 29, 2018, 5:31 pm

    “I’m a firm defender of the 2nd amendment…BUT. When these folks show their “but” I stop listening. Same with “common sense” “it’s for the children” “you don’t need 30 round magazine clips to hunt deer” ect.

  • Michael July 29, 2018, 5:17 pm

    One fool can throw a stone in the water so deep a dozen wise men can’t find it. Solution to this problem; go to the California shore, put on hat, keep walking west until the hat floats. Repeat as necessary. End of problem. No compromise, no retreat, no surrender. 30

  • Scott S. July 29, 2018, 3:14 pm

    I’ve read Wes Siler’s answers very carefully because they struck a very discordant note. He avoids directly answering most questions put forth plainly by Ms. Blannelberry with a tendency to redirect to another issue or topic. But most importantly, he fails to make any real argument (a cogent one) to support his central premise of hunters should flee the NRA, offering instead a contrivance of public land disposition. Guns are used for many purposes, only some of which is hunting. The NRA is not concerned with hunting lands disposition. This is like saying your doctor is a failure for not giving you financial advice too because he takes money as a payment for his services. Tangental relationships do not mean there is a cause and effect relationship due to a peripheral, possible shared interest or intersect. Even more curious to me was the belief of Siler that “support is support” and that a donor must take full responsibility for all the actions of one which received their support. There is no basis for reasoning or logic in this assertion, nor other basis in our society’s ordings. Using this logic, if you donated your heart, kidney, or other body part to someone and they cheat on their taxes, wife, or whatever, the donor is to blame or responsible. His arguments smack of half-truths wrapped in a shared threat or emotional appeal of injustice of someone comfortable with manipulation as the prime motivation of his statements. In short, I find Siler’s argument construction simpatico with socialism’s central determination of “good”. His gun ownership combined with this evident motivation of manipulation is also central. Socialism and other totalitarian leaning societies are infamous for the ‘I have mine, but you can’t have yours’ corruption. This is reflected in his position of NRA’s failure be part of the negotiations of gun control. The only logical conclusion is that Siler is okay with gun control. He agrees with the premise. He only wants to fuss about the form of that gun control, with the belief that he will never be subject to those strictures he is so willing to place on others. And yet this is another marker of socialistic thinking where those of leadership, and as a voice, a writer, in the propaganda mechanism, he clearly sees himself as one, and does not have to be held to the rules they would place on others.

    • David S April 27, 2019, 2:56 pm

      Your reply was brilliant, great insight, thanks for that.

    • Charles Rutledge January 25, 2021, 10:27 am

      Well stated!!

  • MJ July 29, 2018, 3:07 pm

    The NRA evolved into a political faction when the anti-gun movement VILIFIED them. This forced them a respond in kind. It’s those groups
    who could care less about the unstable perp behind the gun, yet they focus on the inatimate weapon as if it was the person itself. Even more disturbing is their lack of what a Constitutional right is and their mission to destroy it. Only the NRA has the backbone to stand up to the tyranny they are accused of.

  • matt i July 28, 2018, 6:30 pm

    i might not agree with the nra 100% of the time but I’m still a life member thery’re the only chance we have

    • DavidInCO July 30, 2018, 11:12 am

      Well said!

  • Gourdhead July 28, 2018, 2:21 pm

    Siler is screwed up in the head. I don’t think he would make a good RINO, much less a patriot.

  • Joe July 28, 2018, 11:39 am

    Siler is absolutely correct. The NRA has de-volved from a pro-sportsman organization to a radical right wing group that refuses to consider even the most basic, common sense approaches to public safety. Instead of encouraging more Americans to participate in the shooting sports, they discourage the same with their no compromise position on any gun related issue. After the Las Vegas shooting they opposed banning bump stocks ( which ATF should have done from the outset). They use spokespeople like Dana Loesch and Ted Nugent who to the general public who the public then perceives as speaking for most gun owning Americans. Responsible gun owners need to speak up and drown out the radical lobbyists that the NRA has become.

    • WVinMN July 29, 2018, 8:11 pm

      Only a radical Marxist POS would describe the NRA as radical. We NRA members haven’t changed regarding our support of the Constitution. You filth, however, never seem to hit bottom despite digging ever deeper.

    • Pat T August 1, 2018, 4:36 pm

      @ Joe, that is simply a lie. The NRA took a harder line AFTER the gun control lobby started outspending it 20:1 calling for and getting expanding TOTAL bans of even revolvers for home defense, even for persons with background checks.
      And Wes Siler says he owns two AR-15s, which EVERY gun control group is seeking to ban.
      Siler found out of 3,000 federal and state legislatures a handful that the NRA had supported that had at some-point supported some legislation that would have affected hunting lands and that is his core criticism? EVERY gun control group has supported politicians who want to ban hunting altogether, so by siler’s logic he is being a hypocrite.
      And you are wrong about bump stocks. NRA did support a ban, the gun control groups packed in OTHER limits.

  • JD July 28, 2018, 11:27 am

    Wes shows us the dangers of letting Californians out of California…

  • TONY BELL July 28, 2018, 9:09 am

    It is very apparent that Wes Siler is ill informed. For example, many statements such as “without state land there is no hunting” is incorrect, what about private land? Just the fact that he ignores the truth that “guns don’t kill, people kill” puts anything he professes about guns to be seriously questioned. There are many examples in this interview that suggest Wes Siler is allowing his emotions to rule intellect. Sadly he was given a platform, but then again anyone that has critical thinking abilities can see through to the truth. Another plant by the anti-gun lobby poorly disguised as a 2A rights advocate. Sorry Wes Siler I see through you disguise and I am quite sure the vast majority of gun owners see through it as well.

  • John Boutwell July 28, 2018, 7:39 am

    While I disagree with the NRA at times, without them there would be no gun rights in America,
    I just rejoined the NRA

  • Sly July 28, 2018, 1:21 am

    We live in a society where Denial has become our best friend and we need to look for the Truth. The NRA is a Russian Business partner and under Investigation for excepting Russian money to funnel to Trump. Russian Spies are a part of the Make up of the NRA, One spy was arrested this week. Now we can keep living in the lie or we can move to find the truth. Even the accusation of Our Arch Enemies running one of our biggest Organizations should bring a red flag to ALL American. Blaming everybody and everything for our complacency will not solve the problem we are facing. Obama and Hillary has nothing to do with this discussion. Are we Americans or are we Russians, both Liberals and Republicans should be concerned

    • BluNos July 28, 2018, 12:05 pm

      George Soros TROLL!

      • WVinMN July 29, 2018, 8:17 pm

        Just like Wes. BTW, don’t you find it a “bit” surprising that all these Marxist s__t-bags that never passed on an opportunity to embrace a communist have near instantly become raging anti-communist Cold Warriors?

    • Comanche July 28, 2018, 8:19 pm

      look in the mirror and say-now am I really this stupid?

    • Pat T August 1, 2018, 4:42 pm

      People from foreign couturier can donate right now to any gun control group. Foreigners from anywhere outside the US including china and Russia have donated to Human Rights Campaign (the gay rights group) ACLU, and EVERY national gun control group.
      The NRA gave that money back as soon as it found out.
      What you are doing is holding NRA to a standard that you don’t hold gun control lobby groups, or any US non profit too.

  • DBC July 27, 2018, 11:23 pm

    Here we go, feelings trump facts every time, no pun intended!
    We are in a pivotal time in our history politically as well as culturally.
    Hunting and the outdoors have zero, that’s zero to do with the Second Amendment!
    Ignoring what’s coming, the legacy of Obama’s change, is naive in the extreme.
    There really is only one reason why politicians want gun control, and it’s little to do with controlling guns, protecting children
    and making us all safer! Demographics, and mental health, are given short shrift, one because it’s politically incorrect and the other because of expense. It’s much more cost effective to demonize the NRA and outlaw weapons! Curiously it’s not NRA members committing atrocities, or violent inner city crime. It’s not NRA members involved in terrorism, but it’s acceptable to smear it’s members and assign blame.
    Wes is a twit, the kind of twit that gets people hurt, and that’s pretty sad!

  • DaveGinOly July 27, 2018, 9:34 pm

    Sorry, didn’t get past his very first comment.
    The hyperbolic “hand grenade” comment is gibberish right out of the anti-gun manual. We’re talking about self-defense. Someone once asked me if that included the right own atomic weapons, and I replied, “If you can conceive of a use in which an atomic weapon will save your life, yet cause no collateral damage to any innocent party or innocent party’s property, then yes.”
    The bit about Ted Nugent – most concert venues don’t allow firearms for insurance purposes. It almost never has anything to do with the performer (although some may make a big deal out of their concert gun-free zones, chances are good they didn’t have a choice.)
    That’s all I needed to hear from this joker. I’m 61 years old and have no more tolerance for bullshit (his first statement pegged by BS meter) and people who think it’s OK for them to advocate for the surrender of my rights. If he wants to surrender his own rights, he can cut his guns up like those other ninnies did. Keep your effin hands off mine.

  • Grant Stevens July 27, 2018, 6:27 pm

    Any gun rights organization that supports politicians is setting itself up for compromise of its mission statement and alienation of its members. The 1968 “Gun Control Act” is a case in point. Such organizations either defend “shall not be infringed” at all costs, or have no business soliciting funds for the “protection” of the Second Amendment. Instead of depending on duplicitous politicians to honor their oath of office, these organizations should develop a mighty legal war chest to use the full force of the United States Constitution to crush those who seek to turn our unalienable right to keep and bear arms into a privilege – no compromise, no quarter. Enforcement must also be a priority. Politicians who author and support legislation or regulations that undermine, arrogate or subvert the Second Amendment should be immediately sued and forced from office. We allow politicians to violate the Constitution at our own peril. And those who use firearms with criminal intent should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law, no plea bargaining or other prosecutorial games permitted. Until the lion lays down with the lamb, American citizens not only have the right to use firearms to protect themselves, their community and their country from evil, they have a duty to do so.

  • Todd July 27, 2018, 6:25 pm

    The; holier-than-though, high&mighty and divide & conquer between “legitimate hunters” and either non-hunting gun owners or hunters who may own notoriously labelled firearms is nothing new.

    These ass-hats invariably show themselves posing with doubles as some form of bona-fides and then blather on about “realistic”, “reasonable”, “military” and “irr/responsible” issues.

    However, in the end, as with all elitists, they are really saying that I can have mine, you can have like mine but you can’t have what I don’t want or need.

    The EXACT same arguments are made by the EXACT same kinds of people in issues of; motorcycles, boats, dogs, automobiles…….


  • Roy Tiffner July 27, 2018, 5:51 pm

    I don’t disagree that the argument has gotten out of hand. I’ve long said that LaPeirre is a blithering idiot that should not be allowed to speak in public. Perhaps he is valuable in some admin capacity but his orations are embarrassing to the gun community.
    That being said, my point will have been proven by the number that vilify me before reading the following.
    Anyone that believes that any concession by the pro 2A will not be seen as weakness and faltering support for the 2A is a fool.
    There are those on the left that endorse reasonable gun control measures that I agreed with. Those are the minority!!
    The rank and file left will not rest until there is zero access to firearms and self defense to all those other than the rich and famous.
    This is evidenced by the ones that cry for firearms bans to “save the children” while retaining armed guards for their own.
    No one American should be more safe than any other and those that endorse otherwise is unworthy of being an American.

  • Mark B July 27, 2018, 5:30 pm

    Wes, you are a fool. If you think that we and the NRA can reason and negotiate with the anti-gun crowd you are sadly mistaken! Give them an inch, they will take a mile and every mile that’s available until our freedom is gone. I will stand with the NRA forever! The NRA represents all of us that believe in the 2A, sad to say you are included too.

  • Steve Long July 27, 2018, 5:30 pm

    Dick Metcalf all over again. This needs to be permanently career ending.

  • AK July 27, 2018, 4:55 pm

    This carefully-coiffed gun-grabbing twink\’s recital of a list of his personal firearms is reminiscent of a KKK Grand Dragon protesting his race hatred by saying \”some of my best friends are Negroes…\”

  • Mia July 27, 2018, 3:48 pm

    For gun owners to leave the NRA is to “shoot themselves in the foot”
    (it hadda be said 🙂

  • Richard G. Williams July 27, 2018, 3:39 pm

    This article was quite educational. I learned Siler writes for “Outside Magazine”. You know that magazine, it’s crammed full of hunting, fishing, and shooting articles.. Actually, that’s a lie. It writes about bicycles, travel, and men’s flip flops. Siler is no more a hunter or gun enthusiast than Whoopi. And the fact that Blannelberry got sucked into giving this lefty the time of day is a little disappointing. G/A should know better.

    • Pat T August 1, 2018, 5:33 pm

      Siler says he owns two Ar-15s yet insists on only being photographed with a break action shotgun. hmm

  • David Wright July 27, 2018, 3:36 pm

    “crackheads” this fellow flushed any credibility he purports to have. Why is he even being interviewed? Sounds as though some Soros funding could possibly have financed his move from California. So sad he has become a puppet of the left.

  • Nia July 27, 2018, 3:27 pm

    Leaving the NRA is like a gun owner shooting themselves in the foot!
    (It just hadda be said 🙂

  • Edward July 27, 2018, 3:12 pm

    Interesting article. As a 66 year old, longtime NRA member, I believe Mr. Siler makes a number of very valid points that deserve serious consideration by all gun owners. I think that the NRA under Wayne LaPierre and Chris Cox has primarily become a money generating organization mainly representing gun manufacturers. For example, shortly after Trump’s inaugural and after the Congress returned to Washington, I took a call from an NRA fundraiser asking for money because “legislation has been introduced that will restrict your Second Amendment right.” Seriously? What, I asked, do you think are the chances that bill will even have a hearing, let alone come for a vote either the House or Senate or signed into law by a President all of which are in the Republican Party? Crickets.

    I believe their unwillingness of LaPierre to engage in meaningful discussions on possible public policy following the shootings of students, isn’t a good position for the organization. If any organization should be taking leadership on the issue its the NRA. Just saying no, isn’t leadership.

    Mr. Siler is on point that the NRA is not uniting the country. There are many pro-gun Democrats and Independents out there that get alienated by the harsh, divisive language coming out of D.C. Case in point are the comments left following the article. Name calling won’t get us anywhere except fighting each other.

    And what in the hell is going on with Russians involved with the NRA. Have we lost our minds that these people are not our friends in any way shape or form?

    I would say in closing that rather than leaving the NRA, I would like to see change come to the organization so it can more effectively represent all gun owners; Republican, Democrat and Independent. I think that the NRA is failing in that today.

    • D.J. July 28, 2018, 11:13 pm

      You are proving my point , in reference to Mr. Siler .
      Sixty-six , longtime member ? Do you possess the magic beans of “Jack’s beanstalk”‘
      as well ?
      Is it your ambition to share that six inches of dirt , that I spoke of ? Are you
      sympathetic to the cause of Marxism ? Is Che a hero of yours ? Do you worship
      Beria ? Was Mao a role model of yours ?
      Get a grip , comrade !!!!!
      You disloyal ” Foxtrot ” .

    • D.J. July 28, 2018, 11:27 pm

      Ed ,
      You’re a “Foxtrotting ” , ” Gulf -Delta ” , communist !
      You and Mr . Siler should get a room together .

      • Edward July 29, 2018, 12:32 pm

        “Foxtrotting” (whatever the hell that means), “Gulf-Delta” (same) and communist? Seriously, that’s they type of shit I was commenting on and here it comes raining down.

        Pretty fucking pathetic.

        • Pat T August 1, 2018, 5:45 pm

          Edward, I am pretty sure you are not and have never been a member of the NRA, and it is unlikely you are a gun owner.

          You seem unaware that 90% of the gun bans and heavy gun control is STATE level and in most states legislation was introduced and often passed to limit your second amendment rights. In the last 18 months over 280 NEW laws.

          And the NRA gets 80% of its funding from rank and rifle members, NOT industry.NRA is the ONLY actual citizen group in the entire debate. By contrast no gun control lobby group in the US has more than 400 paying members, yet they outspend the NRA 20:1. In fact the gun control lobby gets $280 million per cycle from just EIGHT funders n total. Kendeda, which is the seventh largest giver gives $50 million.

          As far as the Russians they gave to a NON LOBBYING arm of the NRA which ANYONE can give to. Notice no one cares that the gun control lobby get MORE foreign funding?

          The NRA has 58% approvals among all Americans because without NRA all guns would be banned. the 2,500,000 crimes prevented by gun oeners each year would end up being successful crimes.

          Lastly US gun crime and murder rate not up, it is down as guns increased. Gun murder of children is down more than any other cohort. over 90% of all murder of children is committed by prior criminals, about 75% by persons with ten or more arrests. If you cared about knife, gun or any other murder children you would be tirelessly advocating for longer prison sentences.

        • ssgpat August 5, 2018, 2:09 pm

          Edward does your mother.know like that

  • Nia July 27, 2018, 2:52 pm

    I don’t know a single gun owner who agrees with everything the NRA says and does. But to state that “it’s too late” for the NRA to evolve to a significant viewpoint held by its members (in this case you claim hunters) is self defeating negativism. Why abandon an organization that has done more, by far, than any other organization (and there are a number of good ones) to help preserve 2A rights? Splinter groups are not effectual in what is realistically a global fight to preserve the rights of everyday people to use firearms for self defense, sporting activities and hunting.
    I am a peaceful, law abiding person who enjoys bloodless firearm sports. I’m not in favor of hunting, but I see it as your right. I certainly don’t hear any “thinly veiled” call to violence in Dana Loesch’s ad vids. I think you should listen to them more carefully. And I think people who call for
    boycotts or resignations from effective organizations who generally work in their favor are unrealistic at best and very self destructive at worst.
    My advice is stay in the NRA, work within the organization to achieve your goals, and join or found another organization tailored to your specific concerns.

  • D.J. July 27, 2018, 2:20 pm

    Mr. Siler ,
    I feel sorry for your positioning in this matter . Feel sorry for your disingenuous
    attitude relating to firearms and their regulation . Feel sorry for your impertinent
    attacks against an organization , and spokesmen and members of the same . But
    most of all , sorry for your need for attention .
    It was clear , having vomited your credentials , travels , education and life
    experiences , that you are clearly , a ” left-coast ” , neocommunist , liberal .
    I too , feel sorry for you in that respect .
    Please keep in mind , sir , the only thing separating enemies of communism ,
    from their ” useful idiots ” , is six inches of dirt in the mass graves .
    I wish you all the best .

  • DoctorInKS July 27, 2018, 1:47 pm

    Another big-picture way to say it: the Founding Fathers put the 2A in place for a reason. Notice its not very far down the list. The Constitution in 1776 is what made America great. There’s nothing like it, and its proven. It allows the potential within people to be realized, if they are capable. After all, most people in this nation have ancestry from overseas, but those original places don’t function or thrive like the US has. Every generation thinks they’ve got a new spin on things, but all I would tell them is that time will be the judge on all of us. There is NO perfect system or govt, but would we really trade our system for someplace else’s? This is also why I don’t think we can export our style of representative democracy, we came up with what worked for us. Other peoples and cultures have to find what works for them.

    During the primaries I wanted to tell Bernie Sanders: are you kidding me? 97%tax rate? What?! Do you need a class in American History, Bernie?(he honeymooned in USSR, so enamored with that philosophy). Of course what’s even worse than that fringe coot’s ideas is that many of the free-lunch, poor work ethic crowd bought his sales pitch. Thats not how America was built. Not built by handouts.
    Protecting 2A means protecting the Constitution and knowing why it came to be in the first place, not just the 2A. Every one of those founding Amendments is there for a real reason.
    If KingGeorgeIII caved in early on, and said: “ ok, I’ll cut your taxes big time”, maybe we quit the revolt ideas & we’d still have an English accent? And this grand “American” experiment of self-govt never happened?
    But it did. And it works. Consider each & every Amendment very carefully, and why it’s there. Are we any smarter than the Founding Fathers? We are only caretakers. Carefully consider the big picture rationale.
    If you are old enough, maybe you too may find it comical & worrisome at the same time, when each new generation has their grand moment in the sun when they think they’ll “fix” everything and change around something that may not be perfect, but certainly took generations to build. Maybe that’s also natural part of the human cycle, but I feel the USA is special, and apparently so do all the people who keep trying to come to this country, knowing its not perfect.
    I say “adjust” and “fine-tune” our system, NOT dismantle it or junk it for some Bernievision or obamavision progressive/socialist plan. I would welcome only those who are fully buying in to American philosophy. My dad (who immigrated to the US in ‘61 from overseas for grad school), took his cue from the ww2 generation cliches: You work for everything you have, anything is possible (in either direction!), nothing for free. Thus you have to respect what it is about America that allows that to happen, hence study what made the US into what it is. When in Rome, do as the Romans…but dont forget that Rome fell from within. I’d tell the progressives that no, we havent “evolved” into some utopia. 60million dead in ww2, current isis atrocities, territorial grabs by nations, robberies, gangs, etc—> all still evident in 2018, somebody go open the progressives’ eyes to reality.

  • sunaj July 27, 2018, 1:25 pm

    The REAL question about the NRA is the new President of NRA OLIVER NORTH of Iran-Contra fame-this does not bode well for 2nd Amendment supporters-this character was the one who wrote the so-called Continuation of Government memo which is nothing more than a Government plan of attack and conquest of the mainland US; Iran-Contra was about US Gov/Intelligence agencies involved in the COCAINE trade-illicit black ops and DRUG RUNNING-THIS is the character that now runs the NRA, has access to ALL your gun records associated with NRA-THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM no one is talking about

    • Willhiem Witherton III July 27, 2018, 11:01 pm

      Why does the NRA have your gun records?

    • Pat T August 1, 2018, 5:49 pm

      THIS is the character that now runs the NRA, has access to ALL your gun records

      wow, tin foil much? You clearly don’t know what he NRA is.

      As far as Oliver North his alleged crime turned out NOT to be a crime and were thrown out. if the Obama admin had been subjected to the same witch hunt, Obama would be in prison. Oh Oli North went around some procedures negotiating with Ian? so did Obama and Hillary Clinton! They borke federal law circumvented the sanctions giving Iran’s mullahs $500 MILLION

      • SOLOS January 25, 2021, 12:32 pm

        The NRA needs new leadership. Ollie North isn’t it. Anyone trying to justify the crimes North committed during Iran-Contra is either lacking a true understanding of what occurred or just a plain sycophant fool.

  • DoctorInKS July 27, 2018, 12:46 pm

    I’d like to refocus Wes Siler’s thinking back to the analytical root of the problem: the destruction that “warped thinking” brains are capable of, using whatever method they can with a gun, or a bomb, or a hijacked airliner. Let me say it clearly: mental illness has been a recurring theme in mass shootings (Aurora, Columbine, Newtown, etc). And fanaticism (another example of warped thinking) is behind terror acts. The answer to “how can we protect ourselves from such people?” then is NOT to legislate normal, law abiding citizens from being able to buy guns, but to FILTER better, to specifically stop certain individuals. Ive been talking to fellow gun guys for years that a room full of guns never hurt anybody—> it’s what people do! So, Wes, here’s a proposal, smacking of reality, since me & my collection of hicap mags are not the threat, while the documented mentally ill people behind the trigger in Newtown, etc were the exact issue: Have a 2nd phonecall the gunstore clerk must make, this one to a psychiatric certain reportable diagnoses clearinghouse…if your doctor has not reported (certain conditions like schizophrenia, etc would be required reporting) anything, just like the current criminal check phonecall…if its clear, you can buy the gun.
    Shouldnt the NRA be offerring (& really hammering away) some alternative that instantly makes their talking points a solution-based strategy, & elevates the discussion? In the most basic sense, if you want to hit the target correctly, lets put the crosshairs on what the data actually has shown (certain mental illnesses shouldnt have access to guns, let a group of psychiatrists give the list of conditions).
    Nothing is perfect, and sadly that Newtown shooter got mom’s AR15, wasnt even his, I know. But I also know that penalizing the rest of us simply isnt right. The deranged schizophrenic vet who shot Chris Kyle in the back is yet another chilling example of this. Y’all know there’s some people you’d never give a gun to, I’d like to formalize that to filter at least some people out of the purchase process. In the 80s we used to say “went off the deep end” or “goin’ postal”, but it meant a deranged individual. Focus on minimizing those, leave the rest of us alone, we didn’t do anything. Anyone who touts personal responsibility should understand the 2way-street nature of that phrase. If someone isn’t responsible, let them pay the legal/criminal price, but then that segues into how our justice system is broken, can’t enforce laws effectively, & how there isnt much deterrent to violent crime. Protect the Constitution, make punishments fit the crime. Beware what direction, philosophically, we take the nation, that took GENERATIONS to build into the unique powerhouse that it is (economically, militarily, medically, technologically). Screw it up, then it may degenerate into something less desirable, eh? Know this, and tell any so-called progressives this absolute fact: human beings are a territorial, warlike creature, always have been, always will be, due to mankind’s inner nature. There will always be groups who scheme against us. Why does the civilized world still maintain armies? Why was the 20th century by far the bloodiest? Have we evolved? There is no utopia, Obama was wrong about open borders. Nor can American and W.European taxpayers afford to pay for all of that ideological foolishness. Focus each discussion on the real problem. Dont say “cold dead hands”, but say “lets filter out those the experts (not politicians) say shouldn’t have guns”. Get something positive done that actually could save innocent lives.

    • Jim July 28, 2018, 6:33 am

      Newtown shooter did have an AR-15, in the trunk of the car. It did not get fired. Two handguns went in with him.

      • Pat T August 1, 2018, 6:01 pm

        No Jim. Like most conspiracy theories your starts with a mistake by the mainstream press. There was NO AR-15 in the trunk of the car. A journalist who likly has never even held a firearm saw a black colored shotgun and assumed that was a an AR and said “they are taking an assault rifle out of the car.” In the pictures you can see it i a SHOTGUN.
        A FUD journalist thinking anything black is an “assault weapon” is where your complete incorrect statement comes from.

        You are actually helping the gun control nutz by voicing easily debunked claims. Every single victim at newton was shot with that AR the killer stole from his mother after murdering her: every wound, every casing, every fragment was 5.56/.223 with the exception of the single self inflicted pistol round.

        What matters at Newton is not one single law put forward or passed by the gun control lobby would have stopped or reduced casualties in that shooting. the largest most lethal shooting of school kids ever was not in the US but in in Norway with an mini-14 a gun you can own in any US jurisdictions, but also in Canada (it is the most common rifle in Canada) , a dozen European countries and fully developed democracies.

  • jack July 27, 2018, 12:41 pm

    In response to Bobo’s post, the NRA does NOT protect the rights of gun owners. The Second Amendment does that. The NRA, a patriot’s organization of which I am proudly a member, serves to actively promote the conservation of our right and freedom to bear arms; a most brilliant promulgation of liberty established by our esteemed fore fathers. That’s why we are called conservatives…we fight to conserve the values and principles that made America the greatest nation in the history of the world. As for lobbying, yes, the NRA is an active participant of ‘bending the ears’ of Congress in order to prevent the repeal of our revered canon. And that’s a good thing. Who cares that “the NRA doesn’t even come close to the expenditure of other lobbying organizations such as the pharmaceutical industry.” Pharmaceuticals have nothing to do with the Second Amendment. And if you’re against those companies keeping drug prices artificially high, send your support to lobbyists that support your view; just as you do to the NRA. As for Siler’s comment, ” I can’t look at the platform of fear and hate and misinformation that the NRA is spreading and hold anything but animosity towards that organization…a bunch of crackheads trying to scare you into giving them $40″; well, the poor guy’s obviously been watching CNN too long.

  • Bob July 27, 2018, 12:35 pm

    WHAT A HYPOCRITE! He says we need to compromise on enacting “common sense gun laws” – which all amount to restrictions on what lawful gun owners (the only ones who follow laws) can own or purchase, but he also says
    “I own an AR in 5.56 right now, and will probably build another one in a larger caliber this winter. I’ll also get a CCW permit (and a P365) for the first time later this year, NOW THAT I DON’T LIVE IN CALIFORNIA ANYMORE.”

    So now that HE has escaped the excessive restrictions of the “common sense gun laws” that leftists have passed in one of the most liberal, anti-2nd-Amendment jurisdictions in the country, he wants to bring more of the same to the rest of us? What a TOOL – a tool of the liberal left.

  • Richard Rose July 27, 2018, 12:21 pm

    This Wes character couldn’t be farther from the truth here. The problem is not guns. A gun is just a tool and no more deadly than a hammer or baseball bat. Gun Control and Reasonable Gun Control is nothing more than attempts by the new Socialists Party aka Democratic Part at people control. They talk about hunting rifles are not the problem, but military grade weapons need to be banned. OMG what naive ignorant fools are they? The .223 round is really only a couple of steps above the .22WMR and is illegal to deer hunt with in many states. Assault weapons? Let’s define assault weapons using the left’s logic. It began with a stick or rock as the original assault weapon. Then someone figured out that you could sharpen a stick into a spear and eventually they figured out how to shape rocks into sharp points and wrapped them onto the stick. Eventually, the bow and arrow was the next assault weapon. The Brown Bess was the British assault rifle for nearly 100 years! I have a pristine assault rifle made by the Springfield Armory in 1862 and it was the military grade assault weapon of the time and it made horrific injuries to those fortunate to have survived being hit by the minnie ball. It was replaced by the 1873 Springfield Rifle which Custer felt was sufficient to put the Sioux Nation in their place and we see what that got him.

    The AR-15 Sporting Rifle is the most popular rifle in the nation today. It is the most flexible rifle available that can be had in numerous calibers that can be used for target shooting, hunting and defending the homestead.

    Again, the National Rifle Association is really the most powerful voice we have defending our 2nd Amendment. GOA is one you never hear mentioned in the news. The NRA hasn’t ever told someone to go out and shoot someone. I have been a Life Member for well over three decades and have been a Benefactor Life Member for a good number of years. I take great offense to all the lies and threats against the NRA. I vehemently disagree on the NRA stand on the bump stock issue. For years the NRA was weak in the matters of gun control. Not until MR. Heston stood up and held the rifle over his head and proudly said, “From my cold hands!” did the NRA finally see that death by a thousand cuts had to stop.

    I am a retired naval officer of 24 years service. I spent roughly 20 of those years deployed or otherwise overseas. I am also totally disabled as a result of those years. I returned to a different nation than the one I grew up in some six decades ago. Never a day without pain and the thought of many more operations ahead. So, it sickens me to see what this nation has became. The Clinton and then the Obama Administrations have caused this nation to be as divided as she was in 1860.

    I am a proud Southerner. Our heritage is being destroyed no different than what ISIS has been doing. We have gangs running our streets. Police Departments have turned into Para-Military units. Certain ethnic groups have made it a practice to argue and fight law-enforcement personnel escalating the contact to a shooting that was justified. Wouldn’t happen if the fool had complied with the officer. Nobody wants to kill another human, but in all too many cases it becomes necessary. Next thing you know there are riots in the streets with arson and looting along with yanking innocent old folks from their cars and beating them.

    The Second Amendment has absolutely nothing to do with hunting. When will these folks figure that out. I am an absolute believer in the writing and wording of the amendment by Thomas Jefferson. The Second Amendment was placed in the order directly behind freedom of the press and religion. It was that important and Virginia would have voted against ratification of the Constitution and Bill of Rights without it.

    Folks, we need the voice of the NRA out there representing us. We do not need collaborators and the like attempting to cause members to leave the NRA. Do I always agree with the NRA? No, I do not. If you have a problem with the NRA then write to Wayne or Chris and share your feelings with them. Don’t go out and write inflammatory articles telling member to leave the organization. Travel around this third rock from the sun and see how much freedom there is in the vast majority of other nations that claim to be free democracies.

  • TedK July 27, 2018, 12:19 pm

    Wes Siler demonstrates quite well that he is a chuckleheaded Fudd.

    Wes is wrong about the NRA on many fronts. Many of those alleged NRA faults Wes claims exist, exist because Wes has not bothered to delve into the details or facts. Instead he accepts the turgid fear mongering that the billionaire alarmist funded media churn out.

    e.g. Take his last statement in your article. “Wes Siler: Putting foreign money into American politics is treason, plain and simple. ”
    1) Treason is clearly defined in the Constitution. Wes’s absurd definition of treason is not from the American Constitution!
    “U.S. Constitution – Article 3 Section 3
    Article 3 – The Judicial Branch
    Section 3 – Treason
    Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.”

    a) Russia is not at war with America! Russia is not an enemy! Wes Siler’s false claims do not make Russia an enemy.
    b) NRA getting financial donations for providing advice regarding publicly owned firearms and competitive shooting is definitively not providing aid and comfort to an enemy.

    2) The fake news leftist media trumpeted much brouhaha regarding alleged Russian donations. Whilst completely ignoring the fact that persons with Russian addresses made donations, nor the Russian government!

    a) A side fact that Wes ignores is the $500 million the CLintons received from Russia, in return for selling Russia a portion of our strategic uranium stockpile and mines.
    – i) Leaving ordinary citizens wondering how Wes can claim a Russian donating a paltry sum to the NRA while Hillary performed Quid Pro Quo for millions of dollars direct benefit, with additional millions going to the Clinton alleged Foundation?

    b) Even the rabid leftist media stories, while making outlandish claims regarding Russian donations to the NRA, admit that the NRA denies receiving Russian funds for elections:
    – i) From ABCNews; “The NRA has denied receiving money “from foreign persons or entities in connection with United States elections”
    – ii) It also appears that Wes is ignorant that there is the NRA and the NRAILA. The NRA is the organization with over six million members that promotes shooting sports, including hunting. The NRAILA is the NRA lobbying arm that takes on Government corruption and abuse of the Constitution!
    – iii) Wes apparently has weird ideas regarding donations to the NRA. Weird enough that Wes can form such bizarre assumptions about treason and whatnot. Right on the NRA donation page is this note in large type! “Contributions, gifts or membership dues made or paid to the National Rifle Association of America are not refundable or transferable and are not deductible as charitable contributions for Federal income tax purposes.” The NRA is a organization consisting of over six million members; dues and donations are not deductible!

    3) Wes Siler displays either abject willful ignorance or malicious fabrication when he states; “I see the gun world’s utter refusal to participate in any gun control legislation at all as an abdication of duty on their part”.
    a) Guns, firearms, defensive weapons are all extensively controlled! Gun control legislation is a perennial activity at all government levels!
    – i) For the last sixty years, most gun control is at the behest of raving hoplophobes whose frequently stated intention is to abolish the 2nd Amendment. These same rabid gun controllers are participants in liberal progressive all-out war on most of the Bill or Rights.
    – ii) Wes also ignores the utter failures of even the strictest gun control to reduce crime, violence or murder.

    4) “Wes Siler: It’s really hard to track political donations right now. What’s publicly listed doesn’t add up to what’s being spent”; meaning that Wes is a liberal leftist who believe privacy is only legitimate for liberals, not conservatives and conservative organizations.
    – a) Citizens have every legal right for privacy of their donations and dues to their 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt organization!
    – b) Leftist progressive liberals have been hiding their donors, often billionaires seeking to destroy the Constitution and citizen rights; e.g. Soros, Steyer, Bloomberg, etc. While these same leftists illegally identify conservative donors and then harasses these citizens at their homes and businesses. Clearly, Wes is complicit with such evil practices.

    5) Wes: “Why is the NRA calling Lee a friend of the hunter, when in fact he’s our worst enemy? “
    – a) Who the ?ell is Lee?
    – b) The NRA supports candidate based on their votes on firearms! Wes is using a classic strawman logical fallacy by introducing his personal twisted logic as NRA’s logic.
    – c) Wes makes bizarre claims about states and public lands. Liberal Administrations and some silver spoon raised conservatives have been removing public land from state control and citizen usage for several decades.
    – d) Excise taxes and waterfowl stamps have provided millions of dollars for wildlife restoration; including the creation and maintenance of “Wildlife Refuges”. Virtually all of these wildlife refuges are state purchased, state maintained, and state controlled. They’ve performed admirably, where liberal administration Federal government actions have thoroughly bungled usage, access, maintenance and even murdered citizens.

    6) Wes: “Wes Siler: It’s just too far gone. I can’t look at the platform of fear and hate and misinformation that the NRA is spreading and hold anything but animosity towards that organization.”, Again, Wes provide clear evidence of his total ignorance regarding all things NRA, Bill of Rights and the Constitution.
    – a) Members get their choice of two monthly publications.
    – i) NRA American Rifleman which focuses on target and competitive shooting sports
    – ii).NRA American Hunting which focuses on hunting.

    7) There are annual assaults on the 2nd Amendment and citizen rights.
    – a) Sadly, Americans who belong to a proud historic national organization must use a portion of their dues defending firearms ownership, firearms usage, firearms storage, self defense against irrational gun grabbers and rabid hoplophobes.
    – b) Even sadder is that American can not trust their government to protect rights clearly stated in the Bill or Rights and whose intentions were laid out definitively in the Federal Letters.
    – c) Worst of all is when those utterly ignorant of Rights owned by citizens are all too happily to destroy the Constitution and Bill of Rights while false blaming an excellent organization for factually tracking and stating every politician’s anti-rights position.
    – d) Wes claims the NRA spreads fear, hate and misinformation. Every one of Wes’s claims are basely false. Whether Wes is profoundly ignorant or willfully fallacious is immaterial. Every one of Wes’s statements are baseless lies and must be rebutted; constantly, since Wes types are pounding pulpits and soap boxes constantly in their desperate desire for undeserved glamour and glory.

    8) The alleged journalist, S.H. Blannelberry, comes across as just a clueless to facts and reality as Wes Siler.
    – a) S.H. Blannelberry fails to clarify or correct any of Wes Siler’s irrational rants; leaving us readers as wondering why is S.H. Blannelberry bothering to interview Wes, unless it is to help promulgate false innuendo and screeds against the NRA, the Constitution, The Bill of Rights and American citizens.
    – b) The NRA is not treasonous at all. Fake news, false claims, specious arguments are Sedition when they directly attack the American Constitution and the Bill of Rights with intent to destroy those pillars of America!
    That is treason!

  • Kenny B July 27, 2018, 12:11 pm

    \”Senator Mike Lee – \”he’s stated that he wants to destroy all public lands.\” Lies!!! Quite the contrary, Mismanagement of Public lands has been going on Long enough, time for the states to step up and let locals make rules and regs. for the land.
    The large forest fires all over this nation is part of \”Compromise\” to keep the forests unusable and a flammable tinder for dry years.
    Then, Let me know what legislation, being passed would stop a Sandy Hook or a Columbine, All that the Perpetrators did was Illegal, it did not seem to stop them. We are raising a world of entitled misfits that get their feelings hurt and vent their anger on those that cannot defend themselves. The attitude of \”Let the state raise (School) our children,but do not let them discipline our little tyrants\” has made a mockery of our educational system. If they are not going to be taught self discipline at home and the educational system is not allowed to punnish for unacceptable behavoiour. The children will become as Wes Siler! \”If we just give up some of our rights we will be free.\” \”NOT!\”Siler says he owns guns and is a hunter but does not understand the NRA\’s stance on No Compromise? Would he be willing to give up his AR-15 in the spirit of Compromise? Doubtful!Give and inch and they will take a yard, is why compromise on our constitutional rights is out of the question!I\’m signing up all my hunting buddies with the NRA!!What part of \”SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED\” does he not understand.

  • mike July 27, 2018, 12:03 pm

    FLUSH THIS TURD he’s CLUELESS and has NOTHING IN HIS HEAD BUT THE LYING PROPAGANDA that’s put out all day everyday as the truth. Do away with ALL “Gun Laws” !!!!!! NONE OF THEM benefit ANYONE EXCEPT the SWAMP!!!

  • KCsmith July 27, 2018, 11:14 am


    I know a liberal apologist when I hear one.

    You shouldn’t be allowed to hunt, Fudd.

  • Capn Stefano July 27, 2018, 11:10 am

    We are actually winning and have potential huge wins coming while this domestic traitor is opening the gates to the enemy. The issue isn’t the NRA, I quit NRA years ago because they are NOT sufficiently pro 2nd (GOA here) the issue is this young fool speaks out of both ends of his anatomy instead of becoming an activist

  • Paul Zoba July 27, 2018, 11:04 am

    Mr. Blannelberry,

    I don’t believe you should be giving this guy any attention or print space. Halt and desist from giving this guy any credibility whatsoever. He’s wrong, uninformed and dangerous.

    Sincerly, Paul Zoba

  • Vaughn Winslett July 27, 2018, 10:49 am

    This idiot needs to come out of his sheltered closet into the real world.

  • triggerpull July 27, 2018, 10:45 am

    Death to them all!
    God is great!

    Hmmm, has a familiar ring to it.

  • Bobo July 27, 2018, 10:35 am

    He misses one point. The ultimate objective of people pushing “sensible” gun laws is to ban or make impossible the ownership of firearms. We saw this in Australia where gun owners and their organization were passive as anti gunners passed sensible laws which ultimately lead to the ban of most types of firearms and made the laws so restrictive in ownership that people just gave up ownership. The NRA is the only organization which protects the rights of gun owners. Lobbying? The NRA doesn’t even come close to the expenditure of other lobbying organizations such as the pharmaceutical industry which lobbies politicians to keep drug prices artificially high. Take a hard look at coastal east and west states Wes and then tell us you support their “sensible” gun laws.

  • KimberproSS July 27, 2018, 10:29 am

    Uncle Ted came out clearly stating the venue was who said no firearms at his concert, not him. And he has no control over that. Guns America, why do you keep bringing that up?

  • TP from Fl July 27, 2018, 10:20 am

    About public land. Here in Florida the feds control the Everglades National Park. It is leased to them by the State of Florida.
    The Everglades Nat Park is home to probably hundreds of thousands of pythons now and we need to get rid of every one of them.
    Because the feds control this massive swamp we cannot hunt them with shotguns. They have to be caught or killed with machetes. It’s hard to kill a 17 foot snake wrapped aound a tree with a machete.
    So far snake hunters have taken a few out of the Everglades but the numbers are exploding while we can’t shoot the things because of federal control.
    Putting these federal lands back into the hands of the states does not mean hunters would be excluded but it just might mean more common sense rules for all involved.

  • Lyle Steve Bublitz July 27, 2018, 10:19 am

    This gentleman has his head so far up his behind that he could lick his belly button from the inside. He obviously has no grasp of where we would be without the NRA standing up for the right of individuals to own firearms. He is putting his warped view of what hunters need for hunting above the obvious situation of having NO firearms to hunt with. Reminds me of the late Tony Dean who hated the NRA and had a following of hunters who totally disregarded the real threat to hunting-not having any firearms to hunt with.

  • Steve July 27, 2018, 10:18 am

    I do not agree with your stance. The NRA evolved to what it is because of continual pressure from lawmakers intent on restricting your 2A rights. Since they have moved into the political arena it has become easier to get a CCW permit in the 2 states that I have lived in largely because of their efforts. I also have to disagree with your statement that supporting a candidate makes you responsible for their actions. I seldom agree with everything that a candidate I support does and as often as not I have to hold my nose and vote for the lesser of 2 stinkers when I am in the voting booth.
    So I have never heard of you before and I hope to never hear of you again.

  • Gary July 27, 2018, 10:18 am

    We just executed a search warrant this morning and recovered three firearms from a convicted felon. By law they are not allowed to possess firearms. Enforcing the existing laws can go a long way toward keeping our communities safe, but as you can see from our warrant execution this morning criminals don’t follow laws. He was a convicted felon, was not supposed to possess firearms, and yet he did.

    He says the NRA is lying to people, trying to scare them. They are trying to whip up enthusiasm, just like the gun control lobby does when they propose their “common sense” proposals. The majority of Americans can determine what is real and what is not. He should take a look at what sort of lies the gun control lobby promote, and the scare tactics from the other side, before he passes judgement.

    Finally, since he has such a problem with foreign monies in politics, I have to wonder what his thoughts are on the Obama administration openly and financially getting involved in Israel’s politics. They supported Netanyanu’s opponent in their last election, and lost. And I have to wonder if he is naive enough to believe Bill Clinton actually got half a million dollars just for speaking to a group of Russians.

  • Jimsop July 27, 2018, 10:17 am

    Only my opinion but this sounds somewhat defeatist. We should never give in because if we give an inch “they” will take a mile for sure. We do not need to hate liberals but we do need to guard against the anti-constitution ideas that the left wishes to put into place.

  • Chained July 27, 2018, 10:12 am

    Mr. Siler hasn’t a clue in my opinion. He doesn’t see the big picture and understand that the satanic NWO globalists, ultra wealthy elite, CIA, CFR, Bilderbergs, Illuminati and UN want us disarmed to bring us under a one world fascist government so they engineer mass shootings to sway the public into believing that we need more gun control laws for the sake of the “children” and he has fallen into their socialist way of thinking.

    “Reasonable” gun control laws are just more useless laws that strangle the law abiding citizen’s ability to protect themselves from a tyrannical government, foreign invaders and hardened criminals and will lead to eventual confiscation if we the people don’t continually fight back. If it weren’t for organizations like SAF, NRA and GOA keeping us informed and creating some form of fear of a loss of rights then we would already be like the UK or Australia. Guns are not the problem, evil people and politicians are.

  • Chuck Yoder July 27, 2018, 10:11 am

    . A while back I got information in the mail about joining ‘Gun Owners of America’. in reading their literature I noted they spent a lot in ink criticizing the NRA. I made up my mind then that I would never join an organization who supposedly supported the 2a and also tried to destroy organizations like the NRA. The GOA are not gun friendly and I believe are an enemy of the 2a.

  • Michael July 27, 2018, 9:56 am

    That’s a damn lie. I live in SE Ok where there is very little Public Land and our deer populations continue to improve every year. I have 2 vehicle Auto Claims this year alone to prove it. I am 70. I remember how it was. You had to hunt hard to even see a deer. I have children older than you, pup. I am also a Marine Nam Vet. Don’t tell me about how much you know. Tell me after you have lived it. Until then, maybe you should shut up, listen, and learn from your elders. We did.

  • Dan July 27, 2018, 9:51 am

    What a scumbag. His desire to vilify the NRA in the very deceptive, dishonest, and misleading fashion that he did tells me he’s not a patriot in any way. I saw his true colors with his very first comment on “Dana Loesch’s thinly veiled calls for violence…’. That’s utter bullcrap, and it makes it clear to me that this guy is another leftist libtard pretending to be a conservative or libertarian. I’m going to extend my NRA membership out another year thanks to reading his BS today.

  • Joe July 27, 2018, 9:38 am

    When you look at a Mass Grave of men, women, children,they had no one to stand up for them. The NRA is not perfect but it is the only voice we have and they stand up for us.United we stand as sportsmen or divide we will fall, history has proven that. USNavy vet.. American

    • Capn Stefano July 27, 2018, 11:14 am

      Actually NRA has sold us out numerous times and the real no-compromise pro 2nd group is GOA. Whatever you do concerning the NRA, if you love the 2nd, join GOA

      • Richard G. Williams July 27, 2018, 3:55 pm

        Stefano.. The NRA has sold us out ??? What’s the problem? GOA membership sliding a bit? You tell me, what would be the most intelligent decision to support an organization to protect my gun rights?? NRA with 6 million members or GOA with 300,000 ?

  • PETER BENSON July 27, 2018, 9:34 am

    I suspect Mr. Siler has gotten what he wants: Attention. There is no other organization to effectively represent up as the NRA does.

  • MIKE IN A TRUCK July 27, 2018, 9:28 am

    Thanks Wes! After reading your interview it gave me the incentive to write a check to the N.R.A. for $500.00 and in the memo I wrote your name!People make no mistake of who we are dealing with here.”Progressive left”,MSM,academia,antifa-they are all Bolsheviks.They hate America as founded.They Hate the Constitution as written.They hate you and they hate me.They want to bring on a new Bolshevik revolution. Hey Wes- you and I will be the first they line up against the wall in the purges.

  • thorr July 27, 2018, 9:20 am

    Although I do agree with his point about leaving the NRA, I don’t agree with his rationale. My reason for leaving is that the NRA has been largely ineffectual during this time of anti-gun craziness. Caving in on the issue of “bump stocks” is one example. I see them becoming more bloated but less effective. I’d much rather see us rally around the Gun Owners of America and any other legitimate state organizations who are staunchly 2A supportive—period.

    • Martin Beijersbergen July 27, 2018, 10:00 am

      You mean divide and conquer

  • Pete July 27, 2018, 9:20 am

    all I read is yet another “I’m a support of the 2A, but…” style comments. It’s obvious that Mr. Siler is not a supporter of the 2A as written.

  • Mka July 27, 2018, 9:19 am

    This is a guy promoting cures for something with no illness.bra has always promoted strict following of laws. As far as a bucket of frags,guy too ignorant to realize explosives are illegal in this form.just trying to get job with some left wing org.pee on u pal.

  • Joe Mannix July 27, 2018, 9:18 am

    By citing “the rich” and “corporations” as the source of societies ills, this Californian reveals himself as nothing more than a Socialist, who buys into the left’s description of the NRA as being a shill for dat ol’ debbil Mr. Capitalism. Guess what? Capitalism is GOOD. It transformed the USA from a hick outpost to the world’s lone superpower in a little over 150 years, increased our standard of living and life expectancy. Contrast it to the USSR or Nazi (that’s National SOCIALIST) Germany. The only thing wrong with capitalism is that we insist on melding it with the government. That isn’t capitalism, and it tilts the playing field. That’s “Democratic Socialism” or Crony Capitalism, and it’s what makers billionaires out of politicians. Politicians are supposed to SERVE the public, not FLEECE the public. You want to get rich? Build a better rifle, NOT regulate arms companies.

    • Randy July 27, 2018, 12:32 pm

      The author Michael Z Williamson, also a serving Air Force member, offers a fictional world in which anyone wishing to have a political office first has to divest themselves of every last cent. I’d love to see this development happen somewhere.

  • 1776 Patriot July 27, 2018, 9:15 am

    Wes Siler: “The rich, and corporations have successfully driven a wedge between the American people, and we should all be working towards unity, rather than falling for the con.” Siler has totally bought into the leftists’ talking points and is a defeatist. Unity? I’d like to understand and see the world from Siler’s perspective but I can’t get my head that far up my rectal orifice.

    Siler enjoys the freedoms of living in the USA but is willing to go along, get along, and give them up, for some mythical unicorn dream of “sensible gun control laws”. The left will never give up their dystopian goal of complete citizen disarmament and we know how well that has worked for its first hundred million victims. Look in the Communist dictionary for “Useful Idiot” and you will see Siler’s picture.

  • tyler kent July 27, 2018, 9:04 am

    Wes Siler is a fraud. He said, “I’d argue that the well being of our children is much more important than how many rounds we get to carry in a magazine. ” The simple reality is that children are not under threat because of magazine capacity. The man claims to support 2nd Amend rights, just like Sen. Ted Kennedy and John Kerry and numerous other frauds. Siler needs to be run out of the gun owner community.

    • Joe Mannix July 27, 2018, 9:27 am

      Tyler, your quote is spot on. What it shows it that this Wes Siler (never heard of him) believes that banning firearms will end gun public gun violence. Thats the crux of his (and the left’s) argument. If I believed that I’d be for abolishing the 2A myself. Siler obviously is for it (it’s part of the premise of his argument, which is EVERYONE knows it’s going to happen anyway, so let’s control HOW guns are banned). Hey, if the government makes it illegal it won’t exist, right? Just like booze during prohibition.

  • Rick M July 27, 2018, 9:01 am

    Poor chuckle head spent too much time in California. I lived there to. After I moved out it took several months for the fog to clear out of my skull so perhaps there is a chance for him still. That’s the lighter side, and its BS.

    Right now he is more dangerous than the opposition. He presents himself as one of us and a voice of reason, he is neither.

  • AL MATHIES July 27, 2018, 9:01 am

    Obviously this “individual” doesn’t know history. They want ALL our guns. Good old Hillary even said this! All regime takeovers were started by gun registration laws or other minor laws and tens of millions of people were then slaughtered to put THEIR values into effect. This guy is not only scary but should be censured. Yes, these murders are terrible and I would hate to lose our son to one of these people BUT many more children are killed by drugs, alcohol, cars, and yes, even hospitals and doctors. This is liberals trying to make this country Venezuela and we will suffer the repurcussions of idiots like this!!!

  • Carl July 27, 2018, 8:55 am

    A petulant child and a democrat. California education showing up. Gun control will be unavoidable only if we the people allow it, this guy is not one of us he is one of them. I don’t care how many ARs he bought to make his point.

  • Lou Bethel July 27, 2018, 8:51 am

    Sorry Wes, I have to politely disagree.
    I am not sure what “disinformation” you are referring to, but I submit that perhaps your information is incorrect.

    Does the industry like Dana Loesch, not in the least.
    She should push her “clenched fist of truth’ where the sun does not shine.
    Does she represent everyone’s views?

    BUT, she is articulate and a counter-balance to the far left.

    Finally, having the support or non-support of another country is not treason.
    No more so than someone like you that wants to undermine our constitutional rights.

  • Roger Topping July 27, 2018, 8:49 am

    Probably another spoiled brat lefty who happens to like to hunt (or hunts to make an image of himself as a manly-man) but has to justify himself to other lefties by denigrating the black gun 2A crowd. Typical that as soon as he can afford it, he leaves the pinko California he helped to make and moves to a still remaining free part of the country (which, of course, he will try and make pink to make himself more comfortable there).

  • Scooter July 27, 2018, 8:13 am

    Wes just compelled me to make another donation to the NRA. Thanks for the push, Wes! It’s apparent that all the liberal programming in our public schools over the last several decades has taken root, and the liberal theology is starting to spread like Kudzu…

  • triggerpull July 27, 2018, 8:11 am

    I worked for years at the headquarters for the oil industry. We routinely had the attitude of “dig your heels in and no matter what never admit fault–and never cooperate on environmental/industry regulations if you can help it.”

    Then Exxon Valdez happened. That attitude ran up a public backlash that ultimately cost Exxon billions.

    I think that’s the kind of thing Wes is talking about–and I think he has a point.

    The problem with the “over my dead body” absolute stance is that kind of inflexibility may end up exactly that way. At this very moment in my state government agents are setting up roadblocks and randomly examining vehicles, buses and even stopping and boarding boats without warrants asking for proper identification. This is happening ANYWHERE within the state.

    • Jerry Jones July 27, 2018, 9:12 am

      “The problem with the “over my dead body” absolute stance is that kind of inflexibility may end up exactly that way”……

      TELLTHAT to the Men and Women who died to provide and protect the US Constitution for us all.

  • Mike S. July 27, 2018, 7:58 am

    What a naive young man! Wes, try shedding a little blood, or a lot of blood, like so many of us have done in the name of freedom. Then come back and tell ME how you want to give away those freedoms to a bunch of domestic tyrants driven by their leftist ideologies. Hunter, shmunter! You don’t know jack about how the freedoms you enjoy were secured. I don’t belong to the NRA. I don’t hunt. And the only thing you know about those of us who are serious about retaining those hard-fought rights is what you read in the leftist press. You would do well to understand just who the enemy is. You can’t have unity with the devil. You’ll have only slavery. Wake up, youngster!

  • JGinNJ July 27, 2018, 7:57 am

    Most countries have “gun control” and what it translates to is that the wealthy and powerful, the military and police, and the criminals have guns. Not the average person. We should promote the rights of individuals to keep and bear arms as a value that should be adopted in all countries.

  • JGinNJ July 27, 2018, 7:52 am

    The NRA, in its monthly publication, highlights news of situations in which a private gun was used for defense. I think the feature is great. I also think it would be great if each month (or as frequently as it arose) news about accidents involving guns was featured.

    • Dr Motown July 27, 2018, 7:58 am

      No such thing as “accidents;” they’re personal negligence. We already know from the CDC data that such incidents are around 800/year, so what else would you like to know? The vast majority of those are due to folks not checking the chamber, so, unless there’s some other unusual cause of the negligence, I can’t see where this would be of any value

  • mULESKINNER July 27, 2018, 7:26 am

    WRONG!…The way to change the NRA is to JOIN and vote the current board of directors OUT and put real 2A advocates in and then have them replace the current executive management out…

    Without the NRA’s deep pockets the liberals will run over our rights like a steam roller..What he is advocating will ultimately bring about confiscation and potentially a civil war…

    You don’t really think patriotic American gun owners are just going to let the government take our freedom away do you? The 2nd amendment is the glue that keeps the rest of our rights together…without a way to tell the government NO we will end up SERFS instead of CITIZENS…

  • Mike Ross July 27, 2018, 7:11 am

    “Dana Loesch’s thinly veiled calls for violence…” What the heck is he talking about? There have been no calls for violence, that’s an absurd Lefty anti-gun accusation. Then there’s “The well being of our children is much more important than how many rounds we get to carry in a magazine.” But he also said, “I believe that the second amendment was written to enable the individual to defend himself against a tyrannical government, foreign invasion, and from smaller threats, and do not support bans on any type of weapon or feature for that reason.” Then he repeats an accusation against Ted Nugent. Do we know who’s right in that story, Ted or the newspaper? This guy calls himself a patriot but sounds like a pro gun-control, hate America type.

    • Dr Motown July 27, 2018, 8:00 am

      Wes is a lefty who happens to periodically shoot guns….I’m sure he supports single-payer healthcare, income redistribution, and everything else the Sandersnistas want

    • WVinMN July 27, 2018, 8:19 am

      He’s either a paid Soros bot or one of the Never Trumpers that can’t get over his butt hurt. Think Bill Krystal over at the Weekly Standard, John McCain, Jeff Flake, etc.

  • John A Tallant July 27, 2018, 7:01 am

    Your naive belief that we can reach a “reasonable” compromise with the gun control nuts is foolish. Their goal is to make gun ownership so difficult, and dangerous, see the poor sap who tried to comply with California’s new ban this year and ended up jailed and charged with multiple felonies; that the number of gun owners shrinks so low they can do as they wish, like the California you sound pleased to have left, like NJ, where a man was jailed and charged with a felony for having an empty shotgun shell. The gun control nuts will send forth young attractive spokespersons to flatter your reasonable positions. Next election cycle those “reasonable” spokesmen will cast you aside, explaining that your “reasonable” positions just didn’t work darn it so we need to enact more “comprehensively reasonable” positions, repeat election after election until everywhere is California. What reasonable control would have stopped Sandy Hook, that was his mother’s gun; Parkland, when government at every level failed to do its job; Las Vegas, when he was a successful businessman with no crimminal record?When politicans say something MUST be done, grab your wallet and your Bill of Rights because they are coming for one or the other.

  • HDW July 27, 2018, 6:42 am

    I started to post a long, detailed rebuttal to Mr. Silar’s but really it could all be summed up thus….I cannot and will not support ANY actions than give the government more power to deprive me of my rights. Love them or hate them, the NRA is still the leading organization defending the Second Amendment. I find the fact we even need them more distressing.

  • Chris Cardino July 27, 2018, 6:33 am

    First off, saying there is no hunting without public lands is a lie. I’m 43 and have hunted since I was a small child. I’ve hunted public land twice in my life, neither trip was productive and one trip I ended up getting shot. I hunt every year on leased timber company land and fill my freezer just fine without stepping foot on public property.
    Secondly, if you want to scrutinize the NRA fine. If you want to see them make changes in the way they handle things great. You have to be involved to be heard. Walking away from the organization does’nt get you heard, it makes you part of the opposition. Sure there are certain things about the NRA that I disapprove of but my 2A rights outweigh those. As long as the NRA is fighting to maintain the 2nd then they have my support.

    • Dr Motown July 27, 2018, 7:55 am

      Well put. Siler appears to have a personal axe to grind here, and is willing to throw the rest of us under the bus. He reminds me of the so-called “Republicans” who would’ve turned SCOTUS over to HilBil just because they had some personal vendetta against Trump.

    • Wes Siler July 27, 2018, 8:23 am

      Here’s an article I wrote about the creation of our Wildlife Refuge system, something NRA-backed anti-American politicians voted to destroy in 2015 (they were unsuccessful):

      You may find deer on private land this fall, but they didn’t spend their lives standing in that exact spot, waiting on you to shoot them. Our animal populations rely on our public lands system to survive. I’m sorry you’ve had bad experienced hunting on public land, but if you’re prepared to burn a little more shoe leather, I think you’ll find them very productive.

      • fwilson July 27, 2018, 9:31 am

        I have to disagree. I live next to a federal wildlife refuge and state game and fish land. Most of the wildlife comes from the farm land and private land. The federal and state land does have the wildlife but not even close to the farm land. Also the mismanagement of funds is sad. The waste of materiel at tax payer expense is terrible. For example cutting a piece of barbed wire from a new roll and throwing the rest. I have seen their waste first hand and know several people who worked for them in the summer. The people who are permanent are the save the earth conservationists but tell the workers to leave vehicles run so they get their budget for the next year. These are only a couple of examples but I have experienced enough to know the refuge is a waste of money and the wildlife would be around without them. Anything the government gets involved in with good intensions usually ends up doing the opposite.

      • Michael July 27, 2018, 9:48 am

        That’s a damn lie. I live in SE Ok where there is very little Public Land and our deer populations continue to improve every year. I have 2 vehicle Auto Claims this year alone to prove it. I am 70. I remember how it was. You had to hunt hard to even see a deer. I have children older than you, pup. I am also a Marine Nam Vet. Don’t tell me about how much you know. Tell me after you have lived it. Until then, maybe you should shut up, listen, and learn from your elders. We did.

  • Greg July 27, 2018, 6:33 am

    It is hard to understand how the NRA is spreading hate. I am not in the we need to do something crowd. REstrictions on type of weapons or magazine capacity is not the answer. I have been an NRA member since 1069 and will be a member.

    • WVinMN July 27, 2018, 8:15 am

      The guys a paid Soros bot! Spreading hate?!? You mean like the campaign calling the NRA a terrorist organization? Complete with billboards and Democrat Socialists labeling all NRA members Nazis (that’s so upside down)?That type of ACTUAL HATE?

  • Mark Trombetta July 27, 2018, 6:31 am

    An interesting, yet shallow analysis. “Gun control” is not inevitable, unless cowards prevail. The word “hate” is the keyword of the liberal. Wes seems to be a liberal ideologue and not hard to identify. For every “Wes” there are thousands of people who understand what he doesn’t want to understand.Start with the First Amendment if you want to curb rights. Let’s see how far you get.

  • Matt July 27, 2018, 6:20 am

    Without the NRA we wouldn’t have concealed carry, Constitutional carry, semi-auto rifles or pistols, standard capacity magazines, or many other types of firearms and accessories. This jackass and others who think like him should not be encouraged by websites such as this one. These “hunters” are part of the problem, not the solution. They are no different than the limousine liberals in Hollywood who make a fortune in movies full of gun violence, and then demand that we give up our guns, while they freely move about with armed security. These “dedicated hunters” have what they want, but gun owners who choose to pursue other types of shooting activities can go to Hell. These people are true hypocrites. If I see this “writer” on this site again, I will hit the unsubsribe button asap.

    • Tom July 27, 2018, 7:44 am

      Matt hit this perfectly, if your not part of the solution, you are part of the problem. Wes, please go back to CA. And live in your echo chamber.

  • Joe July 27, 2018, 6:15 am

    You should have stuck to outdoor writing. And before you waste my time I did not read your bullshit nor will I read your articles. On second thought maybe you can write your bullshit on toilet paper ( septic system compatible ), that way your writings can go where they belong coated with leftover shit of course.

  • Nick Cags July 27, 2018, 5:42 am


    You are entitled to your opinion. But when you bring up someone getting “laughed at on Facebook” you degrade this entire discussion.

    If you studied abroad this is fine. Correct the man and move on to the next question. No need for denigrating a topic that is near and dear to many of us.

  • A Austin July 25, 2018, 6:54 pm

    You cannot compromise a right! All uou are doing is handing the leftist loonies your freedom on bite at a time! NO MORE COMPROMISE! If they want our guns make them come and take them so we know who the traitors are and know who to fight!

  • Jim Hovater July 25, 2018, 4:31 pm

    I’m a teacher, former LEO, and hunter. I’ve been an NRA member since 1982. The NRA isn’t the problem. Liberalism is.

  • Mike V July 25, 2018, 3:47 pm

    Mr. Siler, besides distancing from the NRA, what are the specific policies you would advocate for or against?

    • Wes Siler July 26, 2018, 1:42 pm

      Here’s my original article on the subject:

      Any organization that claims to support hunters must also support protecting our public lands. Hunting and public lands are one and the same.

      We also need an organization that makes an effective and powerful message about why guns belong in our modern world, and how they can exist in that world safely. All the NRA does these days is sow fear and division to reap profit. They are doing all their members (except the Russians) a disservice by doing that.

      • Mike V July 27, 2018, 12:38 am

        Let me clarify, what do you specifically advocate for or against as it relates to the second amendment? I feel you have not fleshed this out.

        I understand your opinion on the NRA specifically as it relates solely to hunting and disagree with your conclusions in part.

        Those are not near as important as the role the NRA has in the defense of the second anendment. And while I support the NRA, I don’t agree with how they do, and what they do 100% of the time.

        But what would you replace it with, and besides prioritizing public land use and not being as closely aligned with corporate or political interests, what would your ideal organizations identity be and what policies would it favor as it relates to the second amendment?


        • Wesley Siler July 27, 2018, 7:24 am

          What does the NRA have to do with 2A? It’s a corporate lobby group that promotes far right ideologies of fear and hate, and uses guns as an identity totem to convince you to believe it’s lies.

          • Dr Motown July 27, 2018, 8:03 am

            Ok, Wes, leave the NRA if you want. But, are you supporting other gun-rights groups, like the 2AF and GOA? Or are just interested in your own public-land niche issue and willing to throw the rest of us under the bus? I suspect you’re a leftist that just happens to enjoy hunting and occasional recreational shooting

          • Pete July 27, 2018, 9:33 am

            The NRA instills far right ideologies and hate? Care to give some examples? I think the only thing they ‘hate’ are politicians and so-called know it alls that support gun control.

            While the NRA is far from the ideal organization to support our gun rights, your portrayal of it is absurd and borderline deranged.

          • TedK July 27, 2018, 12:46 pm

            The NRA is an organization with over six million members!

            The NRAILA is a lobbying arm separate from the NRA. This is the corporate lobbying arm of the NRA and they adhere to all of the laws and regulations required of lobbying organizations.

            You keep insisting there is fear and hate, where there is none. Provide examples of fear and hate?

            The NRA has supported hunters and shooters from irresponsible or abusive laws. Yet, you claim these are lies?
            The NRA has proactively supported and helped protect the 2nd Amendment for many decades; especially where citizens and civilians are involved.

            Every level of government introduces gun control legislation every year at the behest of hoplophobes. Bloomberg, Soros, Steyer all throw millions of dollars at banning guns every year.
            Banning guns is the ultimate desire of gun controllers.
            Since the 1930s, gun control has been pervasive and extensive.

            Every gun law is a burden upon law abiding citizens, not criminals. None of the gun laws have been found useful for preventing misuse of firearms! Not one!
            Recent liberal administrations utterly fail at applying gun control laws! Habitual criminals get arrested using firearms facing felony charges and get offered misdemeanor sentences, quickly putting criminals back on the streets.

            Every aspect of criminal gun use is viewable in the FBI databases for crime statistics. Easily found online. They are the only official database and tracked individually; unlike Bloomburg’s estimates that include military and suicides.

            All of the lies on this page are yours.

          • C.Aldridge July 27, 2018, 2:07 pm

            I have NEVER heard any commercial, article, ad, or story from the NRA that promotes violence or hate. I have heard a lot from the main stream media, anti-gun groups, liberals, dumbocrat representatives, etc. promoting hate and violence. Gun laws do nothing but restrict the rights of LAW-ABIDING citizens only. they do NOTHING to stop criminals and the mentally deranged. I am a retired peace officer in California (which, hopefully, I can leave some day) and know about ALL the BS gun laws here. I would say Wes is not what he portrays. Sure he left California, but he took ALL his California LIBERAL ideas with him. I agree with the person who said he was a LIBERAL that likes to hunt and target practice. He needs to keep his mouth shut because he knows NOTHING about the NRA or what it does.

      • WVinMN July 27, 2018, 8:12 am

        First off, a Russian citizen legally in the US is not barred from donating money to the NRA or any other American civil rights group! And that’s what the woman in question posed as to the NRA. And, you out yourself as a Marxist moron with the “it be TREASON” talk! I really don’t think you or your pals in the establishment media/DNC understand the definition of that word. For instance, selling off 20% of our Uranium holdings to “Da Rusn’z” while El Presidente was assuring then Russian President Medvedev that he’ll be more “flexible” following the election also doesn’t rise to an act of treason. But, it’s probably illegal as all get out…if a Republican committed the crime that is. Right Wes?

  • Blue Dog July 25, 2018, 2:32 pm

    This is a reasonable man making reasonable arguments. The GunsAmerica blog, to their credit, is occasionally a venue for such open discussion and often their writers offer reasoned counterarguments against these reasonable arguments.

    Sadly, those who comment in these articles feel like this should not be a forum for such discussion, shunning any opinions that differ too much from their own. Reasoned men can have reasoned disagreements and Mr. Siler makes some wonderful points about our need as a community to participate in discussions regarding firearms legislation rather than the community as a whole being victimized by such legislation.

    These are the kinds of discussions that are healthy to have. Challenge yourself to be ready to answer such challenges without just calling the person making them names. But that really that sort of buffoonery is all the internet is for, particularly the comments sections.

    • Tim July 27, 2018, 6:32 am

      OK……Show me the reasonable person on the other side……..hello……Hello…..HELLO!…..must of been cut off.

    • Dr Motown July 27, 2018, 8:07 am

      The NRA, and other groups, is actively involved in “discussions regarding firearms legislation.” The problem is that the “other side” has no desire to “discuss” facts….it wants one thing only, and that’s an eventual total ban on private arms ownership. So, tell us, wise Master: how do you expect to engage the “other side” that wants to cut your proverbial head off???

    • Mike S. July 27, 2018, 8:19 am

      Buffoonery? Coming from you, that’s pretty rich!

    • Pat T August 1, 2018, 6:14 pm

      Sadly, those who comment in these articles feel like this should not be a forum for such discussion

      Nonsense. Siler made a dozen easily debunked flat earth claims. and he says he owns two AR-15 yet assiduously makes sure he is only photographed with break actions and bolt actions.

      he is talking about corporations without mentioning that the gun control lobby — which outspends NRA 20:1 — gets 95% of its funding from EIGHT billionaires, while NRA gets 85% of its funding from rank and file members? The gun control lobby can take foreign funds but the NRA finds foreign funds were channeled, and returns them immediately, yet the NRA is “foreign ” but the gun ban lobby is not?

      As far as your name calling with “buffoonery” the only buffoonery is siler. Are you or he denying the huge CORPORATE spending by the gun control lobby? Are you denying what happened with Heller, just ten years ago, in which EVERY national gun control group supported TOTAL bans meaning even a background checked person was BANNED from even owning a REVOLVER at home?

      Siler works for corporate mega media, EVERY outlet he works for is aligned with corporate donations to the Democrats.. Outdoor mag, his principle publisher is owned by a major democrat contributor. conde Naste, his other major employer/publisher, has had dozens of articles advocating total bans as has the Gawker group which he also writers for.

  • JB July 25, 2018, 10:38 am

    Anytime I hear or read a statement about “common sense gun control” I know I’m dealing with a fool. When we have a legal system that actually prosecutes offenders and a media that stops glorifying and sensationalizing these people for ratings, then we can start talking about “common sense gun control.” Why in the hell does anyone think that more laws and requirements will fix a problem that already has a multitude of unenforced laws and requirements?

    Most of these shootings could have been stopped except for hamstrung police departments and mega-phoned social justice warriors fueling the racial/cultural divide.

    Parkland parents and the politicians they voted into office are responsible for those children’s deaths. The policy of hiding violent and repeat offenders in their school system in order to get more government funding provides a perfect cocoon for evil and unstable personalities to metamorphose into school shooters. It was not only allowed, but encouraged for these people to get more money through government aid and espouse the safety of their community.

    The parents in California who voted for sanctuary politicians are responsible for their daughter’s death. Common sense gun control indeed. An immigrant (multi-felon) steals a gun from a federal officer, shoots into a crowd, kills a girl, and then gets exonerated. The parents then join the anti-gun movement. What?!?!

    Good points were brought up in this interview, though. Hunters, call the NRA. Call your congressman. Protect hunting lands. But…if you want the 2A to stand then you better donate to the NRA.

    And grenades would be fun as hell to throw at washers and refridgerators out in a field. I love watching things go boom, and I suppose if I could get some and take them out to a field and go all “Office Space” on my work printer then I would put them in the trunk of my car.

    No offense, Wes, but I’m not about to take your advice.

    • Dr Motown July 27, 2018, 8:10 am

      “Common sense gun control” is usually a leftofascist who just happens to like hunting or occasional recreational shooting. I bet ole’ Wes is very comfortable with ObamaCare, Dodd-Frank, forced Social Security, elimination of private schools, and a host of other Bernie Sanders platform issues…

  • Doug Cole July 25, 2018, 9:08 am

    I wonder if Wes Siler, British citizen, ever heard of Jeff Zumbo or Dick Metcalf? Their careers as outdoor gun writers were torched for such talk. They might as well be non-people in the gun world, and each contributed far more to gun writing than this idiot ever read about. May the same shunning Zumbo and Metcalf received happen to Mr. Siler. I am also extremely disappointed in Guns America giving a forum to this idiot..

    • Wes Siler July 25, 2018, 11:00 am

      Hey Doug,

      I hope getting laughed at on Facebook wasn’t too upsetting, but I’m guessing that’s why you blocked me after you left those comments.

      I was born in Georgia, but had the opportunity to spend a few years in the UK when my dad was stationed there by the DOD. I attended DODDS schools, then had the opportunity to attend University in London. I’d recommend that anyone who gets the chance to spend a few years abroad takes it. Learning about other experiences and perspectives can really enrich your life, and change your perspective.

      If I need any further credentials as a bona fide American, here’s a little family history:


      • Occam August 1, 2018, 7:53 pm

        Wes, I have no doubt your are a “bona fide American.” I’m glad you have been to the UK (I did grad at LSE) because you can see firearms laws went increments to virtual total bans, and where as you know in the UK, as part of the same logic of reducing rights, they also have less equivalent First, Fourth and fifth amendment rights as well. As a writer for press outlets with international l footprints you probably know that like “venue shopping” in the US, if you can get a libel or defamation suit heard in the UK that is the preference since reporters have MUCH less protection. the UK is also a surveillance state without par.

        As a hunter I am sure you also know that the UK weapons culture is: weapons and hunting for elites, and not for the commons, a complete inversion of US sensibilities of starting point of firearms rights and hunting for everyone.

        But from your writing it is also clear your either you don’t know much or are intentionally misrepresenting (I prefer to believe the former) about US firearms law, the history and efficacy of it, the relative funding of NRA vs gun control/ban groups the gun control lobby function, and why the NRA has had to take strong stands.

        You have a broad audience yet you are not using that to correct the scores of complete falsehoods red herrings, strawman arguments one sees in your Democrat National Committee contributor owned Outside, nor Conde Naste or Gawker corporate conglomerates whihc are clearly advocating/supporting more gun control and bans as corporate/editorial policy.

        NRA has 58% approvals among all Americans, it has about six million members, which means it is larger than any membership based civil rights/liberties organization in the US. yet you treat this profoundly mainstream supported organization as if it is marginal. That is not supported by the facts or data.

        What is the size and funding sources of ACLU, NAACP, or Human Rights Campaign? They don’t even aggregate in paid membership size to a fraction of NRA, and they all get massive higher proportions of “corporate” funding. In fact NO civil liberties group gets a lower proportion of its funding from corporate donors than NRA. none.

        More to the point, the point the gun control l/ban lobby now is collecting and spending about $250 million per year — virtually all of it corporate or fat cat highly partisan donors. That lobby profoundly outspends the NRA.

        In fact that lobby spends $5 million on a single entity whose only purpose is to detached affinity programs from NRA.

        so yes, the Russians dropped some money in NRA. why? The academic work looking at what the Russians have been funding in political dialogue in the EU, the US, Canada, and worldwide shows they are not going right or left — but encouraging divisiveness (ironically you enable that end goal). If the Russians think a society is moving right they fund the left, and visa versa. They want societies that might be critical of them to appear as divided as possible. They thought, like everyone, Hillary would cream Trump so they gave money here to the right. In places where the right is doing well they get caught giving money, manipulating social media, whatever they can to the left. Let’s not forget the Russians had social media influence operations in support of BLM. Does that mean BLM is an agent?

        If Trump had been leading in the polls the Russian would have been using social media campaigns to support Hillary and been giving money to organisations on the left.

        The Russians had a huge anti second amendment messaging campaign after Charleston church shooting ( ) supporting Everytown narratives on social media. Anti second amendment rallies were promoted by the Russians as well.

        So please, your your flogging of the fact that the NRA — like every large national group that fundraises from the public — had some donations from a bad source, as proof of something wrong with the NRA is just bogus. As soon as it was shown where that funding came from the NRA returned it.

        Also of the 7,800 or so state and federal legislators in the US you found a couple that the NRA supported that were concerned about state and federal extension of lands they control as “proof” of NRA being somehow systematically anti-hunter or has some “policy” to that effect? Really? That means you fell like a rube for some talking point your repeated or worse yet know it is specious logic and repeat it.

        Why don’t you tally up the $10 million to $100 million gun control/ban lobby contributors that comprise over 90% of all gun control funding? Calling NRA”corporate” is just childish on your part since the other side outspends the NRA easily, and it is the gun ban lobby that is “corporate” and the filthy rich attempting to shred the bill of rights

        I was living in DC in 2006 when I inherited my grandfather’s S&W revolver. I was 25. Like your present lack of knowledge of gun control laws demonstrates, back then I too did not know the state of gun control laws. I had clearance, could pass any background check, training from the military. there was a total ban. More to the point the gun control lobby had been trying to get and had been getting more and more gun control and bans. Wherever they got a “compromise” they then immediately went for more. Every national gun control group supported DC in Heller. Those laws and bans starting the late 70’s and the huge amount spent to expand them to more and more places, is EXACTLY why the NRA started to get robust in the 1980/90’s.

        Lastly I have yet to see you mention that Us gun murder has plummeted in the last 25 years — as guns increased. the rate is now less than half of what it was. You have a middle audience for your articles, yet you ignore the core and central metric — despite overwhelming evidence that the majority supporters of more gun control think rates of gun murder rose when they fell. Also how about mention that 90% of gun violence is criminal on criminal. Or that while murder in Australia fell about 45%, it fell over 50% in the US since their respective 1990’s, meaning Austrian mass confiscation scheme that Hillary, Obama all the gun control groups (and Conde Nast and Gawker supporedt) gun control did worse that the US rate trend.

  • Clay Martin July 25, 2018, 12:17 am

    I’m okay with everyone having a bucket of hand grenades in the trunk.

    • Pete July 27, 2018, 9:38 am

      yea buddy!

  • Bill Krell July 24, 2018, 8:00 pm

    Hate to admit it publicly but I agree. After Sandy Hook, I was hoping to see a well-reasoned defense of our 2A rights from Wayne LaPierre in that televised press conference. It quickly became apparent he was out of his depth and grasping at straws. Video game violence? Really? That’s what all that money we donated gets us? They can keep their made in China pocket knives and pens and quit harassing me 24/7 for more money. I let my membership run out and subscribed to Guns and Ammo for my magazine fix.

    • Occam August 1, 2018, 8:10 pm

      US gun murder rate fell 52% and gun murder of school age kids 5-22 years old fell nearly 60% in the past 25 years.

      Since after sandy hook the gun control lobby a did NOT suggest anything that would reduce murder of children, blaming the NRA is especially stupid. In the past ten years Europe has seen much bigger mass murders and much bigger mass murders of students. Andreas Lubitz murdered 150 people killed in France in one single incident. Anders Breivik killed 70 students in norway (with a gun that is the most commonly owned rifle in Canada and not even in their restricted list). In Nice, a guy killed 86 people and injured 400. Only one of those was even with a gun.

      And heavy video games are relevant to a degree. the data show that heavy gamers have addictive personality types and also have elevated problems with impulse control . the other points NRA made were equally germane. Schools with armed personnel, be they administrators, teachers RSO or other staff compared to same demographic schools without them, have lower murder, assault, robber, rape/sexual assault rates. obama and the gun control groups attacked Lappiere on that, with gun control groups speciously comparing schools with armed presence in Compton to schools without armed presence in very low crime areas. The accurate comparison was same crime rate areas with and without armed staff. and armed staff has been proven to greatly reduce violence in that accurate comparison. The gun control nutz then went onto saying you cant stop every school shooting with armed staff. Duh! You cant stop them “all” with anything including total bans!

      Lappiere was also 100% correct on the media being a very significant contributor. the peer reviewed work shows these killers are virtually all COPYCATS. These killers consistently are shown to have both narcissism and feelings of insignificance. A deeply unsatisfied ego. The conflate fame and infamy and the media giving them HUGE amounts of coverage enables their end goal of becoming famous. When you have sympathetic air brushed coverage of them by outlets like Rolling Stone the media is fully complicit.

  • JK July 24, 2018, 7:56 pm

    Thank you for this interview. Listening to both sides is how we make good decent decisions.

    I’m a dedicated hunter who’s been in two shooter situations, one of which involved my children. It’s just time. I agree the point of 2nd is not about hunting; but I don’t agree with Siler, nor the author about megamags. Tommyguns killed less than 100 people, new production got banned, and life went on just fine. These superauto megamags killed 59 in just one sitting, injuring 500 completely innocent people, some of whom were armed and still powerless. There were dozens of good guys with guns in Las Vegas (the cops)– guess how many bad guys they took out. Zero.

    There are only two arguments for megamags: 1) I don’t want to drag my lazy ass back to the table to reload; 2) I want to kill as many people as possible. The second holds a direct threat to my children, I’m sick of it, and I will never again vote for a candidate endorsed by the NRA. Bad for my kids, bad for hunting, bad for America.

    We can do our own thinking without the NRA (who walked back support for bump stock ban, btw).

    • Mike V July 25, 2018, 6:09 pm

      Being a dedicated hunter is hardly a credential.

      There is no such thing as a megamag.

      Using the Las Vegas attack to justify your argument is a bit dubious. It is the exception to the exception to the exception of the rule.

      Free societies can’t be perfectly safe.

      Police states can, that is if you can ignore the suffocation of your liberties.

    • r dondero July 27, 2018, 6:31 am

      donate to the N R A its our only voice

    • WVinMN July 27, 2018, 8:00 am

      How much does Soros pay concern trolls nowadays? And, given the corruption of the DOJ/FBI/CIA laid bare in front of anyone willing to see, I’m stocking up on “mega mags” and bulk ammunition. Because defending oneself from that type of tyranny is EXACTLY why the founders insisted on a Bill of Rights inserted into the Constitution, including the second amendment!

    • DoctorInKS July 27, 2018, 2:04 pm

      How can you say the hi-cap magazine is a “threat” (at all!) to your or anyone’s kids?!?! So you dont hold some deranged human’s action (in using such a mag) as directly responsible? Why did you omit that elephant-in-room fact?

      So Tommy Guns were banned? Proved nothing. Kennedys assassinated by bolt rifle and .22 pistol. Wasnt Lincoln assassinated by a (primitive) handgun?

      The “gun” argument is completely misplaced, since the real answer for you, me, & our kids’ safety is how we try to screen out high risk individuals from purchase (of anything), and what our justice system does with a captured killer? Right?

    • Occam August 1, 2018, 8:13 pm

      The language in your posts indicates you don’t own any gun at all.

      by the way, odds of a non criminal being ‘involved in two shootings ” is less than one in a million. In fact non criminals in the Us are at lower danger of being murdered than Canadians, Australians or the EU average.

  • Jaque July 24, 2018, 7:48 pm

    “Wes Siler: Putting foreign money into American politics is treason, plain and simple.”

    Hey Wes. Its against the law for foreign money to go into the election funds. Did you tell Obama and Hillary that?

    And doing so is not Treason.

    With that said this Wes guy has zero credibility. He is a pajama boy. I mean a fatalist. I don’t know who the hell he is but I wouldn’t want him in my foxhole.

    • WVinMN July 29, 2018, 8:08 pm

      Yeah. That comment removed all doubt. He’s a paid Soros troll, and not a very bright one at that.

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