The National Rifle Association (NRA) is an organization that promotes gun ownership. It was originally founded in 1871 to advance rifle marksmanship. But today it is the most important advocacy group endorsing the approval of firearms.

The NRA has had to face growing disapproval as more and more people are killed by gunfire in the U.S.—27,153 so far this year. But serious confrontation with the group began several years ago. Following an 18-month investigation, on August 6, 2020, New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a civil lawsuit against the NRA, alleging fraud, financial misconduct, and misuse of charitable funds. The suit calls for the dissolution of the NRA as being “fraught with fraud and abuse.” On the same date, Attorney General for the District of Columbia, Karl Racine, filed a lawsuit against the NRA for misusing charitable funds.

On January 15, 2021, the NRA announced that it and one of its subsidiaries had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Its long-time CEO and EVP Wayne LaPierre’s excessive compensation and exorbitant spending of NRA funds on himself and his wife, such as extremely expensive suits, chartered jet flights, and a traveling “glam squad” for his wife, became a subject of testimony during the proceedings.

The NRA worsened its national image by holding its annual convention in May 2022, in Houston, Texas, a mere 300 miles from Uvalde and only days after a gunman killed nineteen children and two teachers there. It continues to maintain that “guns are not the problem.” The problem, it declares, is mental illness. That position ignores the overwhelming evidence that the ratio between number of guns owned and the number of people killed by guns is the same throughout the world: the more guns in the hands of citizens, the more citizens killed. With 120.5 civilian-owned firearms per 100 people—we have more guns that people—the United States has the highest rate of civilian gun ownership and the highest number of gun deaths in the world.

In short, the NRA continues to champion gun ownership in the face of irrefutable evidence that the reason that the U.S. has more gun deaths than any other modern democracy is that we own 20 percent more guns than we have people.

It’s time to put the NRA out of business. What’s stopping us?

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