While I was digging through my wallet the other day, my husband commented that it looked a bit full. He teased me about having cash that he didn’t know about, but I showed him that the bulk of my wallet was actually made up of industry-related cards — various Second Amendment affiliations, press IDs, instructor credentials, concealed carry permits and gun-range memberships. It’s literally a 3-inch stack of cards! Everything from my United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) Elite membership and National Rifle Association (NRA) Patron Life membership to my International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) credentials and a punch card for The Range of Richfield is stuffed in there. There are also media affiliations such as Southeastern Outdoor Press Association (SEOPA), The Association of Great Lakes Outdoor Writers (AGLOW) and The Women’s Outdoor Media Association (WOMA) along with organizations such as BamaCarry, The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) and Gun Owners of America (GOA).
Why all the cards? Why all the memberships and organizations? Because I believe in what I do … and I realize that it takes more than just me and my set of skills to support and defend our right to keep and bear arms and to train and educate responsibly armed Americans. Thus, I want to be in the know. I want to offer as much support to others who are fighting this same fight. I want to help make an impact and make a difference. With anti-gun organizations spreading and making efforts to launch grassroots movements, we can’t just sit back and watch (or complain about it on social media). The Second Amendment is under attack, and since I know I can’t possibly get involved in every meeting, class, campaign, march, petition or event, I trust that I can use some of my time, energy and financial support to help make sure SOMEONE from our side does make it — and has the opportunity to show the true face of responsible gun ownership.
If you are serious about firearms ownership and the concealed carry lifestyle, your wallet should be full of similar cards. So put your name on that list. Get your USCCA Self-Defense SHIELD protection (shameless plug). Join 2A organizations! All of them! OK, maybe whittle them down to what you can afford, whether local, national or both. Most memberships cost between $15-$60 a year. You may have to give up a few dinners out to cover the cost. And, yes, you may have to suffer through a barrage of emails and direct mailers, but that’s not much of a sacrifice when it comes to protecting such a precious right.
I could take all of the industry-related cards out of my wallet and store them somewhere else. But the bottom line is: I am proud of each and every one of them. I think it’s a great reminder that even if we aren’t working in the firearms industry, even if we don’t shoot guns for a living, even if we don’t regularly visit representatives in Washington D.C., it’s important to support the organizations that support the Second Amendment because they, ultimately, support us.