Second Amendment Blues

Art Bell

A recent letter to NRA Members from Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President

Hi there, 

          Okay, so this latest mass shooting may look distressing to some of you out there and I feel your concern. But worry not, this massacre, like all the others, will fade from the hearts and minds of most Americans as quickly as the sharp retort from an AR-15 in a gymnasium during a high school basketball game. Which is to say (for those of you who are a little slow on metaphors), quickly. 

          I do want to point out to you that this may be an apt moment for our organization to redefine our mission. We’ve called ourselves the NRA (the National Rifle Association, again for the slower members in our group) for many years now. But of course, the ability to own and use rifles in any way we see fit is only a part of what we are protecting for red-blooded Americans. We’ve moved on to semi-automatic weapons of all kinds, including our beloved handguns with monster ammo clips. And look at how successful we’ve been at convincing America that these are ever so useful in “hunting,” which is one important reason we need more of them. 

          And, thanks to lobbying by some of our deafer members, we are this close to making gun silencers legal. I SAID, “THANKS TO SOME OF OUR DEAFER MEMBERS”… Just joking. With silencers legally available for purchase, ear protection will become completely unnecessary! No more innocent bystanders going temporarily deaf around gunshots. See? The NRA does have a heart!

          Now is the time to go to the next level.

          First, let me suggest that hand grenades be added to the weapons guaranteed by the constitution. A “well-armed militia” implies, I believe, the best possible arms available. Just imagine how effective a grenade would be on the hunt: why take out a single elk buck when with one well-aimed grenade you can take out the whole herd? When we start coming home from the hunt with tons of elk meat for our friends and families, I think everyone will see the wisdom in this. And (bonus!) grenades are concealable weapons which puts them in the same category as the handguns that people are able to take to work, to college, to national parks. So I hereby recommend that we add grenades to the list of protected weaponry in the US. My next letter to you will provide sufficient details for those of you wishing to know what kind, how big, where to buy, cost, etc. 

          Next, I think surface-to-air missiles would be very useful in bird hunting, especially for those really giant majestic looking birds. How great would it be to see a bald eagle blown to smithereens by a heat-seeking missile? Boom! Wait, are bald eagles still a protected species? Okay, Peregrine falcons then. Let’s be careful with this one, because, of course, if any of these SAM’s fell into the hands of those crazy guys who like to take out people (wait, aren’t people a protected species? Smiley Face!), we could put some airliners at risk. But look, as we’ve always said, if people were adequately armed, there would be fewer deaths from these things. (I’m still looking for how that argument might apply to blowing up planes even if everyone in the plane was armed to the teeth, but we have people in our organization smarter than me who are good at this. Well, nearly as smart as me.) 

          Last, I’d like to invite our members to write in with additional suggestions for growing our hunting arsenal. No bad ideas. Wait, nuclear stuff is a bad idea since this can be dangerous to the guy using the nuclear weapons and I don’t think we’re capable of providing training on them. Yet. For now, let’s leave them out. 

          While it is truly sad that some folks died in what may have been a preventable massacre, let’s look for the silver lining here, okay? No long faces, this is going to work out great for us! 


Yours in shooting big weaponry as often as possible, 


Wayne LaPierre, 

Executive Vice President

National Rifle Association 

Art Bell was born February 19, 1955 in Lakewood, NJ, where his father was an accountant and his mother a piano teacher. He grew up learning accounting and classical piano, among other things. In high school he co-founded and edited the satirical underground newspaper, THE TONGUE. His articles in THE TONGUE got him into trouble more than once.


While Art’s early passion was science, he discovered the joys of economics while a student at Swarthmore College.


After working as an Economist in Washington DC, Art received an MBA from Wharton Graduate School and pursued a career in television. He worked at CBS, HBO (where he founded Comedy Central), Comedy Central, and Court TV.


Art’s recently completed memoir is entitled,“WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE? How I Founded Comedy Central and (Almost) My Sense of Humor.” It’s about my eight years founding, creating, and building the Comedy Central cable channel. It will be available soon.


Art currently lives in Greenwich, CT with his wife, Carrie. He enjoys playing classical and jazz piano and has recently taken up jazz drumming.