Does the NRA know there are gun owners who aren't chest-beating hard-right conservatives? Seemingly not, because they've done a good job of scaring those people away.
Case in point: Sarah Palin's keynote address at this year's annual meeting.
Her speech was a collection of cliched slogans delivered in a way to best work the crowd, but little of it had anything to do with the 2nd Amendment. Instead, she used the podium as an opportunity to bash various White House policies, bemoan the lack of prayer in schools, and demean "clownish little 'Kumbaya'-humming fairy-tale-inhaling liberals."
Just when the crowd was fawning over her, she delivered the coup de grace, saying "if I was in charge, they would know waterboarding is how we baptize terrorists. [07:15]"
What the ☠☠☠☠? No, really, what the ☠☠☠☠? Who cleared this? I'm sure it sounded witty when she rehearsed it for the Local Tea Party 118 in the dressing room, but it just gives our opponents ammunition to mock us.
This is an embarrassment. This is why potential supporters, some of whom have money and influence, shy away from us. Where was Colion Noir? Tom Selleck? Emily Miller? Nope, the board seems to have preferred someone who rants about "intolerant, anti-freedom leftist liberals."
This is how we insulate ourselves and alienate allies, and it has to stop.