To Our Readers:
Today's post represents a departure from our typical as we begin to dive deep into a new documentary we are producing, So Flo Guns or: My New Church the NkRA? We've been working on the film since 2018 and this essay has appeared twice before in evolving forms since 2016. Please forgive us if it leans too far into the political realm but it's impossible to discuss these topics without doing so. We hope it proves useful to our collective understanding of each other. - Steve R.
Back in 2016 I wrote about the NRA as a kind of alternative church I was thinking about joining. Since then, I never have been too regular a member at the NRA church though I’m giving its new arm a fresh look.
Turns out there’s a schism going on with many of the fierier types separating into a new branch: The Neo-Know Nothing Religion of the Armed, or NkRA. How’s it different?
Just like 2016 I’ve read some thought-provoking Facebook posts from friends, family, and acquaintances recently. One even equated assault rifles to hammers as weapons used in killings (496 in 2011) and implied we need to control hammers if we are going to control assault rifles. Another said he packed a handgun in line at grocery stores, so he could protect himself and his neighbors in case a shooter attacked. Another said he’s a lion because he carries a gun while the rest of us are lambs.
Many Knickers I love (Neo-Know Nothing Republicans, an up-and-coming party of many NkRA members) take it up a notch with family posts about President Biden being a pedophile, and a friend or two explaining they might vote for Hitler today if he were running, assuming he supported policies they embrace.
Well, certainly being a lion sounds better than being a lamb, notwithstanding the Christian doctrine I’ve been following with its images of Jesus as shepherd, lamb; us as His flock, etc. These are crazy times after all, and Christianity seems a bit deficient, especially when one goes to a typical church nowadays where pews are plenty empty. Of course, being a NkRA devotee doesn’t mean you can’t still go to your old church if you feel like it. In fact, many Knickers still go to church on Easter and Christmas I’m assured.
So, I figure maybe this NkRA denomination just might be a reasonable facsimile for a church; especially since the passion it engenders seems so intense. But can it pass for a religion? Let’s see.