The amount of marksmen within the National Rifle Association has dropped significantly. Why are so few gun owners participating in organized events?
I have a copy of American Rifleman from June 1961. Starting on page 23 of that issue is a detailed report of Operations in 1960. With a membership of 418,000 total, the NRA in 1960 boasted 120,367 classified competitors and the Marksmanship Qualification Program had 374,112 participants. That is, roughly 29% of the membership was classified in formal competition and 90% participated in the MQP. Page 49 of that same issue details a drive for 500,000 members by using the Marksmanship Qualification Program and a push to get every NRA member involved.
Today, with a 4,300,000 members, a ten fold increase, less than 100,000 members are classified shooters (about 2%) and the Marksmanship Qualification Program isn’t even tracked despite advances in information processing and computers.
I would appreciate some insight on this. Why has this dropped so much? What plans, if any, are in place to address this drop off in participation?
Here’s a copy of that issue: