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New Year's Resolutions for the NRA

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We will stop referring to ourselves as a "civil rights" organization that defends "human rights." It is a sacrilege to people actually killed or harmed by civil and human rights abuses.

We will acknowledge that our membership of 4 million is dwarfed in both size and sympathy by 6.2 million teachers, 76.6 million students and 18 million healthcare workers in the US living with our depraved gun policies.

We will stop our Black Hand, horse-head-in-the-bed bully tactics against lawmakers. Congress has figured out we are all hat and no horse and lawmakers now fear the gunmen our policies arm more than us, starting with Jared Loughner who shot Congresswoman Gabby Giffords.

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We will admit we have made background checks a joke. Mass shooters Seung-Hui Cho (Virginia Tech), Stephen Phillip Kazmierczak (Northern Illinois University), Sulejman Talovic (Trolley Square mall), Vincent J. Dortch (Philadelphia Naval Shipyard), Jiverly Voong (Binghamton), Richard Poplawski, (Pittsburgh police killer), Bruce Pardo (Santa Claus killer), Latina Williams (Louisiana Technical College) and Jennifer Sanmarco (Goleta postal facility) sailed through background checks. So did James Holmes who shot 70 in an Aurora movie theater.

We declare that the "gun show loophole" is actually gigantic and that such private sales amount to 40 percent of US guns sales. Yes, almost half.

We regret our obstruction of "one firearm a month" laws to stop straw buyers. Thanks to our obstruction, convicted felon William Spengler, who killed his own grandmother, waltzed into a Gander Mountain in Henrietta, NY and chose the murder weapons with which he killed fire fighters on Christmas Eve. A straw buyer was at his side.

We will stop blaming gun crime on "failure to enforce existing laws" and confess that it is our lobbying that has blocked sharing and computerizing of national firearm sales data so crimes cannot be solved. We also block weapon microstamping, further making sure the "bad guys'" never get caught.

We admit that arming bad guys through such loose laws and then blaming them for the need for more firearms is like killing your parents and crying you are an orphan.

We will see the contradiction in being proud safe gun owners while asking authorities to protect our identities. We realize our belief that criminals will target homes because they believe the homes have no firearms or because they believe the homes do have firearms sounds paranoid and invalidates our core belief that firearms keep homes safe.

We will stop pretending our fear to go anywhere unarmed is somehow a public service and we are the real law enforcers. None of our George Zimmerman-style, self-proclaimed deputies stopped Jared Lee Loughner in Tucson despite Arizona's many conceal carriers. We'll take a hard look at all the people-including elderly and 80 pound women-who get to work everyday without a firearm and ask ourselves if, maybe, our problem is us.

We will stop whipping up "preppers" and citizen army extremists into stockpiling bigger arsenals because jack booted government agents are about to storm their homes and disarm them. Though we love the melodrama of being "victims," the 2008 Supreme Court decision District of Columbia v. Heller means that will never happen. Never. And if we are victims, we're the best armed victims in the history of the world.

We will stop our compulsive firearms talk about clips, magazines and how a semiautomatic weapon shouldn't be considered an assault weapon. Though the blather is designed to reveal how ignorant the public is about firearms, even as it tries legislate them, the truth is we get buzzed just talking about weapons.

Finally, we will retire our shopworn "guns don't kill people, people kill people" slogan and our mantra that gun laws won't stop the bad guys and mentally disturbed people. Mentally ill people are everywhere, like a man in China who attacked over 20 school children on the same day as the Sandy Hook massacre. Because he had a knife and not a rapid fire weapon, the children did not die and 40 parents in China still have their loved ones. Unlike in Newtown.

Martha Rosenberg is a columnist and cartoonist, who writes about public health Read more stories by Martha Rosenberg.

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