America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 36

C O V E R

S T O R Y

would tax income.) These people
think the state must control these
things as much as possible. None of
the empirical evidence proving that
lawful gun ownership reduces crime
can change their mission to control
citizens' lives.
Money earned and used honestly,
of course, is the pulse of the American
dream. Money spent to deceive, however,
must be exposed-and it can be,
thanks to our First Amendment rights.
THE NEW ANTI-GUN MONEY

One of journalism's oldest mantras
is "Follow the money." I once wanted
to understand how anti-hunting
initiatives were being funded
since there is no large, grassroots

promote "public health." Some of
those millions will fund studies on
"gun violence." Given the Harvard
faculty's mostly one-sided position on
this issue, many worry this research
will be contrived to support further
restrictions on the right to bear arms.
With the gun issue, however,
the foundations are not the biggest
players. Today there is another subset
of big spenders-people like Michael
Bloomberg and Bill Gates-who are
blinded by ideology and willing to
use their deep pockets to curb your
freedom. And they're willing to lie
(or maybe be duped into lying) to
achieve their goals.
Former New York City Mayor
Michael Bloomberg is at the head

TODAY THERE IS
ANOTHER SUBSET OF BIG
SPENDERS-PEOPLE LIKE
MICHAEL BLOOMBERG AND
BILL GATES-WHO ARE
BLINDED BY IDEOLOGY AND
WILLING TO USE THEIR
DEEP POCKETS TO CURB
YOUR FREEDOM.
membership group raising money
from small membership fees to pay for
anti-hunting initiatives. It turned out
that a lot of the money was coming
from big foundations, such as The
Pew Charitable Trusts. After following
the money further, I learned that
the fortunes behind many of the big
foundations were largely earned by
leaders of industry in the 19th and
early 20th centuries. Pew, for example,
was endowed by the four heirs of the
Sun Oil Company.
Some of these foundations spend a
lot of money. In 2014, The Morningside
Foundation, for example, gave Harvard
University $350 million-the largest
donation in Harvard's history-to


America's

1

st

Freedom

|

December 

of the anti-gun money movement.
He committed $350 million to
Johns Hopkins University. The total
commitment-the largest ever to that
university-lifted Bloomberg's lifetime
giving to Johns Hopkins beyond
$1 billion. Some portion of these funds
will be used on gun-related issues.
Given his politics, it is extremely
hard to believe the research will be
open-minded. (Both Harvard and
Johns Hopkins declined to comment
on precisely how much of these funds
will be used to study guns in America.)
WHERE THE ANTI-GUN MONEY
IS GOING There are currently two

anti-gun groups getting most of

the attention nationally. The first is
Bloomberg's Everytown for Gun Safety.
The other is former congresswoman
Gabrielle Giffords' group Americans
for Responsible Solutions. Neither
group has a grassroots membership
paying annual dues. Both rely in part
on donations from wealthy individuals
and organizations to pay for their
"research" and political ads.
The memberships that Everytown
and Giffords' group claim are basically
unsubstantiated numbers of people
who typed their email addresses
into one of these groups' websites.
They don't have millions of people
paying annual dues. They don't offer
real benefits and services to their
"members." They are gun-control
groups pretending to be grassroots
movements while funneling mega-bucks
through their organizations toward gun
control causes.
For its lobbying and public outreach,
Bloomberg's gun control group spent
$750,000 as of July 28, 2014, according
to the Center for Responsive Politics
(crp). Everytown also hires lobbying
firms. (crp uses the records made
public by the Senate Office of Public
Records to show who is giving
to politicians, nonprofits and others.)
From Jan. 1 to July 28, 2014,
Everytown paid The Raben Group
$100,000. The Raben Group is a
Washington, d.c.,-based public
relations and lobbying firm that says
it "brings together a diverse collection
of professionals with deep roots in
law and progressive public policy."
Everytown also pays The ob-c Group
and The jbh Group for lobbying,
according to crp. (My media requests
to the avenues I was able to dig up to
contact Everytown were not answered.)
Bloomberg himself reportedly
seeded Everytown with $50 million in
2014. According to crp, by the end of
August Giffords' group received nearly
$17.5 million in 2014. The group had
spent nearly $8.5 million as of Aug. 31.
One of the things Giffords'
group spent money on were ads in
Arizona accusing then Republican
congressional candidate Martha



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of America's First Freedom - December 2014

America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 1
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 2
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 3
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 4
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 5
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 6
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 7
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 8
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 9
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 10
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 11
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 12
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 13
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 14
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 15
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America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 18
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 19
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America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 21
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America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 23
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America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 25
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 26
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 27
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 28
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 29
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 30
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 31
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America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 33
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 34
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 35
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 36
America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 37
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America's First Freedom - December 2014 - 78
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