By Matt Manda
NSSF’s National Shooting Sports Month kicked off this month and amidst the excitement of August, NSSF President and CEO Joe Bartozzi joined Tom Gresham on Gun Talk Radio to chat about current events and what’s going on with the firearm industry trade association. It’s well worth the listen.
NSSF is ‘Insidious’
The Guardian newspaper published a story attempting to knock NSSF as “insidious.” The British tabloid only reinforced how effective and impactful NSSF’s work is on behalf of the entire firearm and ammunition industry.
“Everyone needs a good boogeyman, I guess, and they have turned their sights on us,” Bartozzi told host Tom Gresham. “They say that the NSSF ‘zealously’ and ‘single-mindedly’ helps to preserve the industry. Well yeah! That’s what we do. And let me tell you something, Tom – we’re going to get this (the article) framed. Because the firearm industry in this country generates $80 billion – that’s billion with a B – in economic activity and employs about 350,000 American jobs. Those jobs are important to me and I’m never going to apologize about being ‘zealous’ in protecting those jobs. They can say what they want but we are not slowing down.”
‘True Gun Safety’
NSSF President and CEO Joe Bartozzi joined in the excitement of National Shooting Sports Month® by exercising his marksmanship skills (and safe gun handling) at an indoor shooting range.
Gresham made certain to highlight a true irony in the conversation about who really does the hard work to promote Real Solutions® for safer communities – gun control groups or the firearm industry.
“NSSF is now – and has always been – at the forefront of gun, true gun safety education. Not the phony gun safety the gun-banners claim to be, but actually teaching people how to be safe with their guns. This is nothing new for NSSF,” Gresham reiterated.
“Absolutely. The fact that they never mention any of our real solutions – we call it our Real Solutions for Safer Communities programs – I mean Project ChildSafe® in 2024 is going to celebrate its twenty-fifth anniversary and in that time we have donated more than 40 million free safety kits including gun locks, in all 50 U.S. states and five territories,” Bartozzi reminded. “There’s also Don’t Lie for the Other Guy, which helps prevent illegal straw purchases by training retailers on how to spot these things. Operation Secure Store®… and our suicide prevention program, something I’m personally very proud of and very heavily invested in. But, you know, they never ever mention these things because, I guess, it would show us in a better light than they’re used to. We are very serious about this and we’re not slowing down.”
Four Years Running
Gresham and Bartozzi also discussed the break-neck pace of firearm sales that has continued as Americans across the country, from all backgrounds and situations, have gone to the neighborhood firearm retailer and purchased a firearm, including millions of first-time buyers. All told, it’s been 48 straight months – four years straight – of 1 million or more FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) verifications processed for the sale of a firearm. That’s a truly remarkable stretch.
“It shows that people are serious about their Second Amendment rights and there’s something going on,” Bartozzi explained. “People are discovering – or rediscovering – not only recreational shooting and hunting but this issue of self-defense. We’re hearing from retailers all across the country – training classes are jampacked. People want to get trained. They want to get educated. We’re very pleased – and proud – to see this.”
Listen to the entire Gun Talk Radio conversation between Tom Gresham and NSSF President and CEO Joe Bartozzi on these topics and more in the video above.
About The National Shooting Sports Foundation
NSSF is the trade association for the firearm industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of thousands of manufacturers, distributors, firearm retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations, and publishers nationwide. For more information, visit nssf.org