Well, who didn't see this one coming?
Everyone remember a few months ago when the GOP killed a bill that would have required background checks for those wanting to purchase a gun, because the National Rifle Association (NRA) warned it MIGHT lead to a gun owners database?
Their worst fears have come to fruition! The database exists!! And who built it? The NRA did, of course.
Oh wait... The database existed even as they were trying to kill the bipartisan legislation, overwhelmingly backed by the public, which would have actually made the creation of a national registry a felony?
According to Buzzfeed:
It is housed in the Virginia offices of the NRA itself. The country's largest privately held database of current, former, and prospective gun owners is one of the powerful lobby's secret weapons, expanding its influence well beyond its estimated 3 million members and bolstering its political supremacy.
That database has been built through years of acquiring gun permit registration lists from state and county offices, gathering names of new owners from the thousands of gun-safety classes taught by NRA-certified instructors and by buying lists of attendees of gun shows, subscribers to gun magazines and more(...)
The result: a Big Data powerhouse that deploys the same high-tech tactics all year round that the vaunted Obama campaign used to win two presidential elections.
Of course, these types of databases are common for lobbyist groups, but wasn't it the NRA who said such a database of gun owners was a direct threat to our national freedoms, American norms and our second amendment right? It that was one of their main talking points just a few short months ago.
The NRA won't say how many names and what other personal information is in its database, but former NRA lobbyist Richard Feldman estimates they keep tabs on "tens of millions of people." [...]
Some data-collection efforts are commonplace in politics these days, such as buying information from data brokers on magazine subscriptions and the like.
But several observers said the NRA's methods reflect a sophistication and ingenuity that is largely unrivaled outside of major national presidential campaigns. While the organization took great umbrage in December when a newspaper published the names and addresses of gun owners in two New York counties, the group for years has been gathering similar information via the same public records as a matter of course.
So gun owners, suddenly feel like your privacy is being threatened, because you have pro-gun organizations calling you inquiring about donating to their cause or you are receiving mailers asking about your gun ownership? No need to wonder how they found out you own a gun.