THE NFATCA EXPO AND TRADE SHOW
By John Brown
There have been many times over the last year where many of you might feel like the NFATCA has gone silent in its work with the industry. We can tell you, my friends, nothing can be any further from the truth. Our efforts have become nothing less than surgical in nature, being careful to pick our battles and not to get mired in the details of a single incident that could derail the big picture. Not only has this administration affected the quality of the work of the government but it has also effected how all of us go about doing what we do on a daily basis. Funding for our organization has diminished much like what has happened to our economy. Costs have gone up and the normal resources that you and I depend on financially have virtually dried up. Not unlike the rest of all of our lives we are learning to do more with less. Sounds familiar, right? What this administration has done to our economy alone is savage and in many cases the government is not suffering like the commercial industry. When did you last hear of a government worker getting laid off?
So we trudge forward and we work to find the right issues where we can make a difference in how we serve the industry. Whether it is working an issue that ATF has run amuck with in Illinois or helping industry members in Washington State, our presence is more powerful today than ever. But, we all must realize that, once again, we have to find better ways to do more with less. We encourage each of you to take the time and initiative to learn how to use the SAW website so you can check in on all of the initiatives that are underway to support the industry. This coming Knob Creek will yield a lot of results with our initiatives and will tell the story of how we are working harder now than ever.
Operationally speaking, the past year has been challenging. There were times when we thought that the FAIR trade group and the NFATCA would merge and become one. That didn’t happen as we both have different ideas about progress. We have worked closely with NSSF in the past but this year saw more of a break in that relationship. As usual, the support for NFA ownership can and has caused a riff in our relationships. So we go back to our roots of almost nine years ago and support NFA efforts nationwide. We work with our resources at ATF and we work with NFATCA members and non-members making certain that we support any run at infringing on NFA rights. In other words we have your back at every angle.
Depending on the outcome of this election, we are anticipating more and more push back on NFA rights and our support will continue to increase for our membership despite diminishing resources. It is a distinct pleasure to know that behind our efforts are the energy of enthusiasm of one of the finest teams I have ever had the pleasure of leading. The NFATCA board and our Executive Director, Jeff Folloder, have been at my side since the inception of our efforts. This year we will announce the retirement of some of our board and the new election of replacement members. Rest assured we are, and always have been, at the forefront of any NFA legislation. This year saw the support for the NFATCA even step up to the congressional level with routine correspondence with Congressmen and Senators that have a common interest in supporting our agenda. Along with this move we have also enlisted the support both financially and from a leadership of one of the largest gun organizations in the world. Wishing to remain anonymous but supporting us at every step, that single organization is providing financial support and navigation for the NFATCA that was previously absent. It is nice to have someone act as your GPS system when the going gets tough or navigation in troubled waters poses a threat!
As a result of all of this support, the NFATCA will sponsor its first major public event in 2013. This event, the first annual NFATCA Trade Show will model the NRA convention and will be used as a support mechanism to bring powerful guest speakers and vendors in our community to a central locations for an event that will include a show, speakers, and a demonstration of NFA technology for all of those that want this type of event for the NFA community. Watch carefully for event details or announcements at the major gun shows, including the 2013 SHOT Show. Our purpose with this event will be the unveiling of one of the most powerful interests in the gun community in the entire firearms industry. It will be exciting, interesting and fun for all interested in the NFA hobby. Sponsors from all facets of the industry, from suppressor manufacturers to the most exciting new products in short barreled rifles, shotguns and any other weapon NFA manufacturers will be present. Some of the larger NFA dealers will also be invited to show their wares. This will be the Expo / NFA show that you will not want to miss.
We call this “Moving up to the next level,” but with the changing tides in the NFA industry we know of no other way to generate enthusiasm, and support for one of the fastest growing hobbies in this great country of ours. We have always espoused that “United We Stand, Divided We Fall,” and that common hardship will allow the NFATCA to begin to bring the entire industry together in an event that will provide knowledge, and experience for any NFA enthusiast. Once again, check the SAW website (www.smallarmsoftheworld.com) for details on how we move forward.
The NFATCA is stronger today than ever before and our goal is to continue to bring the finest support available to the industry and sport of NFA collectors nationwide. Keep your eyes peeled and your reading glasses ready as we prepare what promises to be one of the finest shows ever presented for the NFA enthusiast. Guest speakers will come from nationally known supporters of the NFA community to political interests that will spark the hearts and minds of everyone.
If you are interested in helping with this event simply let us know on our web site at www.nfatca.org, our chat forums at www.nfatcaforums.org or email us with your ideas. Better yet, come join our ranks and help all of us move this to the next level today.
|This article first appeared in Small Arms Review V16N4 (December 2012)|