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The Names Project AIDS Memorial Quilt has been raising awareness for over twenty years. It's been bringing home the impact of the absence of those who've been lost and memorializing the people and the effects it's had on their loved ones since 1987. On the day of the Clackamas shooting Omir the Storyteller had a brilliant idea.

Follow me over the jump and let's kick around some ideas to short circuit the NRA's best laid plans.

Gun violence in America is at an unacceptable level and has been increasing for way too damned long. We all know that the NRA has acted as a gatekeeper and agitator to prevent any effective response to the growing problem. They have created a very effective choke point by basically holding a gun to the heads of legislators who dared to even bring up the subject of gun control. Or the subject of any reforms or regulation having to do with guns at all. It's never 'the right time', to address the problem. They pretend and try to convince Americans that that the majority of the country agrees with them even though polling shows that most people think there should be reasonable restrictions and regulation of firearms. So let's cut the NRA out of the equation. Viral videos, social media and crowd sourcing have become viable methods of transferring memes to the larger population, why don't we combine them and create a sort of collateral circulation that circumvents the choke point?

What if someone started a movement to memorialize and personalize all those who've been victims of gun violence? The dead, the maimed, the innocent bystanders. Men, women, children, black, white, green, everyone. Not just a list or a petition, but a place where loved ones can post pictures, stories and videos of those who've been caught in the crossfire for everyone to see.

I don't have the technical expertise to pull something like that off, but there are an awful lot of smart, talented people here who could brainstorm something, or a bunch of somethings, and provide a place for everyone affected to share their stories and their loved ones.  And for others to offer support.

I would first propose that we come up with a name for the project, maybe The Victims of Gun Violence Memorial? VGV is simple and easy to remember, but I'm sure we can come up with something.

How 'bout it folks, lets make the NRA irrelevant!

Originally posted to FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 04:58 PM PST.

Also republished by Shut Down the NRA.

Poll

Is enough enough?

5%3 votes
18%10 votes
3%2 votes
1%1 votes
57%31 votes
9%5 votes
1%1 votes

| 54 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tips for making the NRA irrelevant. n/t (17+ / 0-)

    Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

    by FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 04:54:42 PM PST

  •  Good Idea! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl, phonegery

    Pursue it.  A single drop of water appears as nothing until it is joined with a billion others in a mighty ocean.

    Dawn is breaking everywhere Light a candle, curse the glare We will get by. We will survive.

    by MikeBoyScout on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:19:58 PM PST

  •  You had me at the Title. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl, jan4insight, phonegery

    Whatever the outcome of such an initiative, it is clear that little will happen until we get the NRA out of the way.

    I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
    but I fear we will remain Democrats.

    by twigg on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:22:37 PM PST

  •  With apologies (0+ / 0-)
    We all know that the NRA has acted as a gatekeeper and agitator to prevent any effective response to the growing problem. They have created a very effective choke point by basically holding a gun to the heads of legislators who dared to even bring up the subject of gun control. Or the subject of any reforms or regulation having to do with guns at all. It's never 'the right time', to address the problem.
    We all know that the RKBA has acted as a gatekeeper and agitator to prevent any effective response to the growing problem. They have created a very effective choke point by ganging up on Dkos users  who dared to even bring up the subject of gun control. Or the subject of any reforms or regulation having to do with guns at all. It's never 'the right time', to address the problem.
    I have changed little but enough to make a point - we need to put our own house in order. We need to shut down the defacto NRA chapter that operates here. Some of the RKBA (though not all) try to put a strategic distance between themselves and the NRA yet they use tried and tested NRA tactics.

    Anyway, pro NRA or not, the RKBA certainly walks and quacks in a similar manner.

    •  Respectfully, I don't believe this is relevant to (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wilderness voice

      the point of the diary. I'm suggesting a way for all Americans, or people everywhere, for that matter, to memorialize and personalize their lost loved ones. I'm proposing something for everyone to agree on, I have no interest in promoting divisiveness, within the site or elsewhere, on this subject.

      Thank you for taking the time to comment

      Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

      by FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:45:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Join the NRA (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl

    Become a dues paying member.

    Anyone can join, and your vote counts as much as any other member.

    If there is a majority of members in the NRA that are not "typical", there is a chance for change.

    From the NRA’s membership page –

    “The most important benefit of NRA membership, however, is the defense of your Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. NRA-ILA tracks the issues and alerts members about legislation involving firearms and hunting at the federal, state and local levels of government. Successful legislative action begins with you — the individual member. For information regarding legislative action or to become an ILA grassroots volunteer, call 1-800-392-8683.”
    If 50.01% of the NRA membership were pro gun control....

    We've been spelling it wrong all these years. It's actually: PRO-GOP-ANDA

    by Patriot4peace on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:33:22 PM PST

    •  It's a good thought, but you're assuming that (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ssgbryan, phonegery

      the vested interests behind the NRA would listen to their members and not just take the dues and use them to keep lobbying anyway they please anyway.

      Not to be a downer, but it's a consideration.

      Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

      by FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:50:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Similar Strategies Helped Fighting the Vietnam War (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Patriot4peace

        I think the Join-the-NRA idea is a good one. Even if the NRA leadership doesn't want to listen to their members, being on the "inside" could give gun control advocates a new way to make their case.

        During the Vietnam War, opponents of the war bought stock in Dow Chemicals (which made napalm) and attempted to use their rights as shareholders to get the question of whether Dow should continue to make napalm debated and voted on at the annual shareholders' meeting. I forget if they actually got a vote taken, but they caused some havoc at the meeting and embarrassment for the corporation's board and executive officers. Not to mention unwelcome publicity.

        Maybe a group should organize to join the NRA; then, as members, do things like demand an audit of the membership lists to see how many members are active. (I recall reading somewhere that NRA leaders inflate their membership count by not dropping people from the roles, even when they die.) A group of members could also run an opposing pro gun control slate of officers,and demand a voice at meetings. Maybe they could even get a copy of the membership list and actually find out if all those nonvoting members are anti gun control extremists like the leadership.

        My dad & older brother were hunters back when the NRA was actually an organization for sportsmen. I think most hunters in this country understand that there is a big difference between a hunting rifle and a semi-automatic; they also understand that guns are very dangerous and should be strictly controlled in urban areas.

        Maybe it's time for gun control advocates to reach out to gun owners who would favor some gun control. We won't get laws as strict as those in Europe any time soon, if ever. But we might get some sensible regulation of gun sales and ownership. That, by itself, would be a big step.    

      •  I'm not sure (0+ / 0-)

        either of us know how the organization works, but votes are votes, in national elections and "Associations".

        I believe, in the NRA, they vote for leadership and the majority votes for a "president" or "imperial wizard" or whatever the fuck they call the head honcho over there.

        If a majority of the membership votes for an anti automatic weapons platform, suddenly the lobbying effort changes fundamentally. How many liberals would it take to gain a majority? Shouldn't be hard to count the votes once I'm a member and know the enlistment criteria.

        The rabid conservative current head of the NRA got elected to his position with (let's guess) a million votes and the slightly less conservative guy got a dozen votes, so a million plus 13 liberals need to be convinced to join the NRA and vote for Al Franken or Stephen Colbert or George Soros. (Russ Feingold would be my choice)

        The head of PETA is never going to be the head of the NRA, but perhaps there can be more liberalism injected into the leadership with a more balanced membership.

        When that happens, the rabid gun nuts will do what their intellect level has always done. They'll take their ball and go home, pissed off. Membership funding will be further to the left and then different lobbyists will be hired.

        Then we might see some of the more even keeled Republican Congress critters support an assault weapons ban, or a reduction in the quantity of ammunition one can purchase in a month, or funding for investigating those large purchases of ammo to ensure the buyer is not slipping into delirium.

        There's got to be a quarter million members right here. Did we get John Tester elected? Did we get Liz Warren elected? Did we get Jim Webb elected?

        Not by ourselves, but we have come together as a community and effected the outcome of elections. If the DKos charter is to elect more democrats, let's elect a democrat to the NRA.

        We've been spelling it wrong all these years. It's actually: PRO-GOP-ANDA

        by Patriot4peace on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 03:31:34 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  affected probably (0+ / 0-)

          I have read the difference numerous times, between (e) ffected and (a) ffected and both sound right to me in any sentence.

          We've been spelling it wrong all these years. It's actually: PRO-GOP-ANDA

          by Patriot4peace on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 03:37:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  According to a poll Maddow quoted on Friday, (0+ / 0-)

          over 70% of NRA members actually agree with and want background checks and to close the gun show loophole. If accurate, then the NRA is already taking the dues of the vast majority of members and is spending it in lobbying for an opposing agenda.

          Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

          by FarWestGirl on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 08:36:44 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  A name idea: LoveTarget (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl

    I like the idea, and I thought that the name should evoke a response.

    I came up with the name "lovetarget"    

    The idea of the name is that it memorializes people who were victims, aiming love at those who were shot down, and their loved ones.

    I do think an idea like this would be effective.   There is too much anonymity around the victims of gun violence.

    Religion gives men the strength to do what should not be done.

    by bobtmn on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:39:01 PM PST

  •  I know that photos & vids can be posted on (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mideedah

    Facebook, does anyone think that a Facebook page might be the way to go with something like this?

    Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

    by FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 05:51:53 PM PST

  •  I don't dislike your idea (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl

    but one if the RBKA posters said today what I thought was the most significant idea that I had heard.  Since only 7% of NRA members actually vote, if a bunch of crazy liberals joined their organization we might be able to force change by outvoting them and instilling leaders with more sensible gun ownership philosophies.  Probably a pie-in-the-sky idea, but it would work if the details could be worked out. .

    •  True, it is a legitimate course of action. I'm (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jan4insight

      more interested here in making a space for everyone who's been touched by gun violence to contribute and memorialize their loved ones. But the two actions are not in any way mutually exclusive. We could, and maybe should, do both, but I think a site like I'm suggesting could have a larger overall effect because all it would take was posting a pic or a comment that would stay available, no ongoing commitment of time or other resources. And anyone could visit and see the people, particularly the children and innocent bystanders who have been injured or killed.

      Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

      by FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 06:04:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  GTG, battery's about gone & chores waiting. Not (0+ / 0-)

    sure when I'll be back in town to check in, but I will.

    Thanks for taking the time to read & comment.

    Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

    by FarWestGirl on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 06:28:59 PM PST

  •  The Names Project Quilt is tangible & touchable (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl

    and when you see it, and realize it's vastness, that's when it hits you...  we made a panel for my brother in law, back in 1989 - it still moves me whenever I get to go see the Quilt.  

    A video quilt might be a start, but I don't think anybody will realize how big the problem is until they see it laid on on the lawn of the Washington mall or spread out in a convention center.  

    The Quilt's panels are 6' x 3' - about casket sized, give or take.  When you realize that there are acres and acres of AIDS victims, that the space it takes up is literally farther than the eye can see (even from the top of the Washington monument now - you used to be able to get a complete aerial shot from there back in 1989-90), when the unimaginable becomes vividly visible and touchable, when it takes days to walk it - that's when you get the impact.  

    From Wikipedia:

    Projects inspired by NAMES

    The AIDS Memorial Quilt was the first of its kind as a continually growing monument created piecemeal by thousands of individuals, and today it constitutes the largest piece of community folk art in the world.[16] It was seemingly inevitable that The Quilt be followed by a variety of memorials and awareness projects, both AIDS-related and otherwise, that have been inspired by and modeled after The AIDS Memorial Quilt and its caretaker The NAMES Project Foundation. Examples of these include:

        The K.I.A. Memorial Quilt, created to remember those U.S. Armed Forces members killed in the Iraq War.
        Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on America a number of Quilt projects were created memorializing the victims.
            September 11 Quilts Memorial Exhibition
            United In Memory
            The World Trade Center Memorial Quilt
            America's 9-11 Memorial Quilts
            The World Trade Center/Pentagon/Pennsylvania Memorial Quilt
        Many medical conditions also now have quilts, for example:
            Huntington's Disease Quilt
            Congenital Heart Disease Quilt
            Breast Cancer Quilt

        "Virtual" AIDS Memorial Quilts have also been created:
            Project Stitch "Digital Quilt"
            Second Life AIDS Memorial Quilt
            AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts Digital Quilt
            Southern AIDS Living Quilt Living Quilt
            Columbia University AIDS Memorial [1]

    The Names Project Quilt started out as posters tacked on walls - and grew into a more permanent display.  There are digital quilts now, so it might be a good start to use that - it has to be personal.  I don't know if any of these digital quilts have a Facebook page or not - I know the Names Project has one.  

    If a Facebook page was started, then maybe a website to host a digital quilt would grow from there.  Social media has its faults, but it can also work for causes - maybe start an action list - people who "like" a FB page could also be given links to write to their Congressional Reps and Senators.  Bombard the local chapter of the NRA where you live with letters and photos of victims of gun violence.  Submit ideas for control and regulations that don't violate the Constitution - with rights come responsibilities - on personal and governmental levels.  Register guns, present ID when buying ammo, ammo sellers should have to file reports about how much ammo they are selling and should flag people who seem to be stockpiling.  Extend the waiting period, do background checks nationally, not just in the state.  No more sales at gun shows - you can ORDER a gun at a show, but you wouldn't be able to plunk down the cash and just walk out with a new gun without any paperwork being processed and background checks being run.  Regulation and reform doesn't mean we want to cancel the second amendment.  

    I have no idea how to make a Facebook "page" but enough people seem to do it.  I don't know anything about web-hosting, but somebody out there knows.  Kick ideas around with your friends - ask them to kick it around with their friends - post on blogs and websites and social media things you use.  Encourage conversation with gun "nuts" - start persuading them that gun rights, with good regulations, can be a good thing for everybody.  

    "Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential." - Barack Obama

    by Ricochet67 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 06:45:36 PM PST

  •  I want government smart enough ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FarWestGirl, nominalize

    to drown the NRA in a bathtub.

    "A good president does what's possible and a great president changes what's possible." --sterno

    by sk4p on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 07:09:15 PM PST

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