An open letter to the NRA, after *that* recruitment video

A reminder that the views expressed in this blog are my own.

Dear NRA,

You do not have to arm yourselves against me. I am honestly bewildered as to why you are afraid of me, a middle-aged, moderate-radical Episcopal priest, mother, and cat-lover.


Even though I did attend the Women’s March in my city, and one in support of refugees and immigrants, 18814176_10213171784195062_4068859492634336195_n and one to raise awareness of the horrific toll that gun violence takes on our children, our communities, our neighbors; even though I do my best to bother my elected representatives by phone, mail, email, or office visits whenever their decisions bother me; still, I am not sure why your recruitment video casts people like me as a threat, and seems so deeply to fear me. I am unarmed. I am peaceful. I am really quite harmless.

I have resisted the rhetoric of Nazi propaganda and Hitler, partly because I teach our children consistently not to call people names that are not their own; but also because, while I appreciate the lessons of history, our time is unique to us.

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Broad-brush comparisons gloss over the dangers that lie, like the devil, in the details. Details like keeping the media in the dark about important decisions, and making idle threats in hopes of cowing independent and critical action; like promoting Islamophobia as public policy, or restricting women’s access to important medical provisions.

I don’t watch award shows, so I can’t comment on that part of your recruitment video. I have, as I mentioned above, attended a couple of demonstrations. As I recall, the Women’s March, which attracted numbers dwarfing the previous day’s Inauguration celebrations, was remarkably peaceful and positive. In fact, one of the most powerful demonstrations that I have attended in the past year was completely silent: non-partisan and hope-filled, it was the opposite of fear-mongering , and the antithesis of violent. I did not notice any guns on the nuns who hosted the demonstration of the power of love over fear.


I am not sure what the “clinched fist of truth” of your subtitles looks like, but I am willing to offer, in its stead, the open hand of blessing. One of the most-spoken phrases in the Bible, one often offered by the angels, is, “Do not be afraid.” I may be no angel, but you do not need to be afraid of me.


Rosalind +

About Rosalind C Hughes

Rosalind C Hughes is a priest and author living near the shores of Lake Erie. After growing up in England and Wales, and living briefly in Singapore, she is now settled in Ohio. She serves an Episcopal church just outside Cleveland. Rosalind is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing , and Whom Shall I Fear? Urgent Questions for Christians in an Age of Violence, both from Upper Room Books. She loves the lake, misses the ocean, and is finally coming to terms with snow.
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1 Response to An open letter to the NRA, after *that* recruitment video

  1. Pingback: Friday Festival: Trip or Journey? – RevGalBlogPals

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