It's because we, as a group, don't care enough. Read this post. It's all about how well organized the opposition is. THey care. THey really, really care. We have guys posting on this forum complaining about how their rights are restricted, and they don't belong to the NRA, or even any of the duck organizations. Please, spare me. If you don't care enough to belong to organizations, you just don't care enough. You, as an individual, have little influence. You, as a member of a larger organization, can have tremendous influence. Read about what these folks have planned. Will they get their wishes during the Bush administration? THey will get some of them, because the states will pass laws. THey might even get some thru the Congress and have it tied up with other legislation that forces the President to sign it. If you think you have nothing to worry about for the next few years, or because you only have a shotgun, you are being very, very foolish. And, you're part of the problem. Please, no fantasies of how they'll never take your shotgun! That's crap, and you know it. If you don't have what it takes to fight now, you don't have what it takes to fight when the going gets tough. Now switching my soapbox to the OFF position! David New England Group Finds Value in Regionalism 2/4/2002 Nearly a year ago, a group of gun-violence-prevention activists from five New England states met for the first time in Boston to talk about issues of common interest. When the day was done, participants spoke of their hopes for continuing the regional gatherings. Best intentions often fail to materialize, of course, but the dedication of the New England group has proven to be the real thing. On Jan. 24, activists representing a dozen organizations gathered in Boston for what has become a regular quarterly meeting of the group and made plans for ever stronger coordinated activity by the group. Prominent among those new plans is for a daylong meeting of "key legislators and advocates" from each of New England's six states. At the Jan. 24 meeting, which was hosted by Join Together, representatives were asked to start thinking about whom they might invite to the meeting, to be held this spring. The purpose of that meeting will be to allow legislators and advocates to network and attend workshops designed to spread the use of good ideas on preventing gun violence and fostering discussion of new ones. Information-sharing is central to the New England group's modus operandi, and it's not necessarily restricted to state and regional issues. On Jan. 24, representatives from the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence and the Consumer Federation of America Foundation made the trip from Washington, D.C. to update the New England group on national developments. Becca Knox, Northeast Regional Director for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence United with the Million Mom March, told the group about a bill, H.R. 2037, that deserves activists' full attention because it is an attempt by the gun industry to prohibit litigation against them and because the bill, introduced by Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) already has 203 House co-sponsors. She also reported on legislative developments to regulate gun sales in the secondary market, such as gun shows. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) is on the verge of introducting a bill that would require universal criminal-background checks on all purchasers and Knox said that the Brady Campaign is supporting that effort. The Reed Bill to Close the Gun Show Loophole is also pending in the Senate, and Knox provided an overview of that measure as well. Susan Peschin, firearms project director at the Consumer Federation of America Foundation, spoke to the group about regulating guns as consumer products. Peschin pointed out that firearms are specifically exempted from regulation as consumer products by an act of Congress, making it difficult to regulate the industry effectively. She said that a bill by Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-RI) that would give regulatory power over firearms to the U.S. Treasury Department has been reintroduced. One of the advantages of vesting regulatory power in a government agency is that "when you have a regulatory agency, you don't have to legislate every little change," Peschin said. Design standards could prohibit the manufacture and sale of cheap "Saturday-night specials." Size standards might govern the production of easily concealable yet powerful "pocket rockets" that have been an industry trend. There could be recalls of reportedly defective products like the Remington 700 rifle, which has been the subject of a CBS News investigative report on deaths and injuries caused by the rifle's users who claim that it has a faulty safety. Participants talked about how their own groups might promote regulation of guns as consumer products. They also took time to talk about common problems each is facing in trying to continue the fight against gun violence. The top concern, everyone agreed, was fund-raising. They also talked about how belonging to a regional network like this one is helpful to them. Jude Pearson, executive director of Massachusetts-based Stop Handgun Violence, said she's found that the group is helpful because other members are good at recommending resources, "and all state groups need access to resources." Ron Pinciaro, a board member of the Connecticut Collaborative for Education Against Gun Violence, said that "hearing each other's problems and the approaches that different people are taking is important." Mike Gipstein, coordinator for the Great Lakes region of the Brady Center and the Million Mom March, said that he'd like to use the New England group as a model and "try to replicate it in the Great Lakes region." When the meeting concluded, members said their goodbyes to each other and began thinking ahead to the next meeting in April.