The Second Amendment Foundation is not a Johnny Come Lately organization jumping on the gun control bandwagon. In fact, SAF is the nation’s oldest, and largest, nonprofit 501(c)(3) foundation dedicated to research, publishing, education and legal defense of gun rights. The difference between the SAF and an organization such as the NRA is that SAF does not engage in any type of direct lobbying. In fact, to retain its nonprofit status, SAF cannot engage in direct lobbying or advocate the election or defeat of any candidate for public office. However, donations are tax-deductible, but you may be surprised at the SAF’s recommendation at the end of this article.
“We are probably best known for our court cases. We currently have approximately 30 cases involving gun rights in courts across the country, including a writ of certiorari before the Supreme Court regarding carry rights,” said Allen Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation.
The case involves New York’s decision to force a citizen to show cause before being granted a license to carry. The SAF has rightly objected—as I am sure most reading now would—that a bureaucrat should not be the ultimate decision maker as to your need or right to carry for self-defense.
“We have won two major Supreme Court cases previously with McDonald and Heller. These decisions assured gun rights were extended to all 50 states through the Fourteenth Amendment and the right to keep and bear arms. The case involving New York is the third prong and seeks to define the right to bear arms not only in the home, but the right to carry outside of the home,” said Gottlieb.
Beyond developing the framework for nearly every major gun case in the court system today, SAF is deeply involved in educating gun owners and other members of the public through conferences held across the country, but most notably with its national conference on gun rights policy. The conference draws 600 to 800 individuals and organizations who discuss policy and chart the direction for the movement for the next 12-month cycle. This has been essential to building grass-roots efforts and ensuring we are all pulling in the same general direction, and sharing success and failures to prevent resources from being wasted by repeating mistakes.
“The pooling of knowledge and resources at these conferences has helped to build a movement, similar to the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s, which did not just have one national organization. It had several national organizations, state groups, local churches, and many individuals that came together to successfully push the movement forward,” said Gottlieb.
What is SAF Doing Today?
Right now. Today. Our rights are under assault on the federal, state and local levels. The national media is against us, and focuses its efforts on tragedies such as Newtown and Aurora. The media does this while completely ignoring the roughly 2,000 instances every day where a person uses a gun to defend and protect their person or property from criminal attack.
The SAF remains on the front lines making sure our side of the story is heard as well, by showing that firearms serve a good and important purpose. I cannot stress enough the importance of having a loud and national voice. Political polls and public opinion are constantly shifting—especially given the turbulent times we are experiencing; the SAF is actively working to ensure the political winds and public opinions do not shift against gun rights and gun owners.
“We do this by putting out as much information as possible through, Internet, print, TV, radio. It is critical that we do not let the other side frame the issue,” said Gottlieb.
SAF’s Call to Action
If this is where you expected to read the plea for money, I hope you are not disappointed when I tell you that Mr. Gottlieb just about advocated the opposite. I know I was surprised when I asked Mr. Gottlieb and got the following answer:
“Sure, we would love it if everyone supported the Second Amendment Foundation, but it is also important, probably more important, for people to support other groups as well. All politics are local. Therefore, supporting your local gun rights’ groups may be the most important of all. Nothing is more important than having boots on the ground,” said Gottlieb.
Essentially, he advocated support for local clubs, organizations and grass-roots efforts. And stressed the support SAF offers and gives to these efforts.
Although Mr. Gottlieb may not have come out with it, I will. The Second Amendment Foundation does need money and is more than worthy of the cost of a box of ammunition. You can join the SAF for $15—ok, much less than a box of ammunition these days, but you get the idea…
And here is a real eye-opener for you. The SAF offers a money back guarantee. If you are not happy, it offers a “No Questions Asked” refund policy! Ever heard of another nonprofit with that type of guarantee?