Gov. Greg Abbott just couldn't contain his joy at learning that the National Rifle Association has announced plans to relocate to Texas.
Why, Texas "safeguards the Second Amendment," the governor proclaimed after the bankruptcy-bound gun rights group made its announcement.
Hold on, governor. The NRA's decision to relocate to some still-undisclosed Texas location doesn't have a damn thing to do with the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It has everything to do with allegations that the NRA's top echelon has mismanaged donors' money, spending it on lavish vacations and other perks that have no relation to the company's corporate message.
Pardon the pun, but Gov. Abbott has missed the mark badly by throwing out the welcome mat to an organization that has been accused by New York prosecutors of being crooked to the core.
As Politico reports: The announcement came months after New York’s attorney general sued the organization over claims that top executives illegally diverted tens of millions of dollars for lavish personal trips, no-show contracts for associates and other questionable expenditures.
Suppose the New York AG's investigation proves that the NRA is guilty of what's been alleged. Is that the kind of company that Gov. Abbott wants doing business in Texas? Really ... governor?
Don't misunderstand me on this point. I consider the NRA to be populated by demagogues at its highest level. These individuals have bullied politicians for decades into keeping their hands off any legislative remedies to the gun violence plague that continues to kill innocent Americans. The NRA contends that anything -- any law at all -- would usurp the Second Amendment's guarantee that Americans should be able to "keep and bear arms."
School shootings, church massacres, carnage in movie theaters and shopping malls have done nothing to move the needle toward some sort of sensible remedies to preventing this kind of gun violence. The NRA has stood firmly to anything that would stem the violence.
I, too, support the Second Amendment. I also believe it can be preserved while Congress can enact laws that make it impossible for lunatics to acquire firearms.
As for the NRA's decision to bring its alleged corruption to Texas, well ... no thanks.
John Kanelis, former editorial page editor for the Amarillo Globe-News and the Beaumont Enterprise, is also a former blogger for Panhandle PBS in Amarillo. He is now retired, but still writing. Kanelis can be contacted via Twitter @jkanelis, on Facebook, or his blog, www.highplainsblogger.com. Kanelis' blog for KETR, "Piece of Mind," presents his views, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of KETR, its staff, or its members.
Kanelis lives in Princeton with his wife, Kathy.