Laurie Aronson

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Chairwoman’s Message: The Winds of Change are Blowing

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 1/26/21 8:00 AM

I guess you could say this is a January unlike any other. We have seen much hatred spewed in our nation’s capital and politics have become messy. But there’s also much ado about a man who is a constant winner and an overachiever, and that's what the people who support him like about him. Yes, he's been caught in some lies and maybe twisted the truth a little but he's still out there proving his haters wrong time after time. Some people are just jealous of someone who is successful and has money. Throw in a beautiful foreign lingerie model at his side and they hate him even more. You may or may not have wanted him in his role, but he was there and there's nothing you can do about it. I know it’s possibly going to get more heated over the next few weeks, but like him or not, Tom Brady has turned things around in Tampa and now they are headed to the Super Bowl.

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Chairwoman’s Message: 2021 Here We Come!

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 12/29/20 11:01 AM

As has been our family's tradition for several years, our annual Chanukah celebration takes place on Christmas Day. It’s the most logical time for everyone to get together. The candle lighting takes the place of the tree lighting, and the traditional turkey is replaced with a taco bar. The beautiful buffet was filled with all of the usual fixings: taco shells, tortillas, ground meat, bell peppers, onions, cheese, lettuce and tomatoes, and three kinds of salsa (you get the idea).
Now comes the family discussion over which order to line them up on the buffet. Seven people, seven opinions. Nevertheless, it was a celebration, exactly as we had planned, and we were all grateful for the small family gathering and the opportunity to be together and exchange gifts. Let the rejoicing begin!

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Chairwoman’s Message: Happy Holidays Everyone!

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 12/1/20 11:31 AM

As the song says, “It’s the most wonderful time of year,” and I couldn’t agree more, especially in 2020. This year has been a ride of a lifetime and I don’t think any of you would disagree. This holiday season will hopefully be a celebration and a send-off to the year that was.

Each Thanksgiving, our family celebrates over a generous lunch accompanied by too many desserts and good wine. For this I am grateful. (NOTE: For the record, there were only seven of us at the table and there were no cooties spread during the consumption of our meal.) During our lunch, we each take a turn to go around the table and express what we are grateful for. I always look forward to this tradition and I’m often surprised and delighted by what is said. One key comment that was made was that it doesn’t matter what you have been given; you should work hard to earn things for yourself and don’t rely on others to do it for you. It was a lesson that everyone could appreciate.

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Chairwoman’s Message: Nearing the Finish Line

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 10/30/20 9:51 AM

November 3rd. It’s finally here. It feels a bit silly to submit my monthly column just prior to the Presidential election, but here it goes. I’m not a professional political commentator, nor do I want to predict the winner. Let’s just hope we have a clear winner right away, so we can all get on with our lives. I whispered to my friends as they headed to the polls, “Make good choices.”

I get asked this question frequently, “So what do you think will happen to gun sales if Trump wins (or if Biden wins)?” yada yada yada. My answer hasn’t changed much in the past several election cycles. My answer of “We will be fine” is not a complacent one. I know we will have challenges either way, but our industry is tough, and we have the right people on Capitol Hill (NSSF, CSF, and others) fighting for our Second Amendment and hunting/shooting rights. The fight may be more challenging at times, but we’ve been there for each other, and we fight together.

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Chairwoman’s Message: New Opportunities & New Allies

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 9/30/20 9:52 AM

There are positive signs of 2020 starting to peak around the corner if you are looking for them. First of all, it’s Fall y’all. I recently traveled back to Aspen to experience the changing of the leaves and inhale some fresh, cool mountain air. That alone was enough to re-energize the soul. Fly fishing was another. The best part was bringing my father with me as we drifted along the Roaring Fork, observing the incredible gold and red trees while catching numerous beautiful rainbow trout. Upon my return back home, even Louisiana was experiencing some cooler temps that touched the 50’s at night. Another good sign.

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Chairwoman’s Message: Onward and Upward

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 8/26/20 2:10 PM

As I write this column, those of us in Louisiana and Texas are bracing for Hurricane Laura. By the time you read this, let's hope we've all come out of it unscathed. Of course, we had a hurricane coming; it's 2020. I suppose Laura wanted to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Katrina (almost to the date). We are used to hurricane season down here and often have time to prepare. We buy lots of food, dry goods, paper goods, bottled water, and plenty of alcohol. It's the same grocery list as the COVID-19 quarantine. We've now transitioned from quarantine drinking to hurricane drinking.

But, as we transition out of the summer months and into the fall with COVID still lingering, things look a little different than they have in the past. We should all be asking ourselves, "Had we known this pandemic was coming, what could we have done differently?" Or better yet, "What can we do in the future to better prepare us for such uncertainty?"

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Chairwoman’s Message: Say It Ain't So

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 7/28/20 4:30 PM

If you’ve been in business long enough, you know that not all decisions are easy. As the COVID-19 pandemic has continued to impact every aspect of our lives, we have all been forced to make difficult decisions. On Monday, the NASGW Board of Directors voted unanimously to cancel this year’s Expo. This was a decision that none of us wanted to make, but it was the right decision. With mounting cases in the state of Texas and increased travel restrictions in numerous states, particularly in the northeast, we could not leave things to chance in hopes that cases would subside or that states would ease restrictions. We’re not blaming Texas. The biggest reason this decision had to be made was for the health and safety of our members, our colleagues, our employees, and the entire shooting sports industry.

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Chairwoman’s Message: Mid Year Check-In

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 6/26/20 2:00 PM

There’s an important lesson from current events that we should all take note of, and prepare for. 

If you’ve been paying attention to the recent protests, you’ve noticed that our freedom of speech has bubbled to the top, and it’s louder than ever before. It doesn’t really matter which issue is being debated or if you personally agree with the subject matter. People just want to be heard. The same goes with the topic of gun ownership. In the next few months, there will be many opportunities for opposers to the Second Amendment to be loud and have their voices heard. However, the same is true for supporters of the Second Amendment. Our voices WILL be heard, and I expect that others will listen, perhaps more now than ever before. They may or may not agree with us, but it is our duty to be respectful of others’ opinions. It’s in our best interest to teach good lessons of gun ownership and to clearly explain why we adhere to the second amendment. We will break through to some but not to all. Let’s remember that with respect and an open mind, others will listen.

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Chairwoman’s Message: A Light at the End of the Tunnel

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 5/27/20 10:40 AM

Here we go; we are doing this. That’s right, the recovery is underway, and we are all trying to return to “normal” slowly. Put down the bag of chips, the beer can, and the pack of Oreos. Step away from the breakfast table. It’s time to get back to your office and a “normal” routine. 

(You may define “normal” as you please.) 

Who could have predicted that we would have had nearly three months of exploring new ways to juggle our workloads, homeschooling, and practicing social distancing?

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Chairwoman’s Message: Eyeing the Recovery

Posted by Laurie Aronson on 4/29/20 2:58 PM

We have all had extraordinary experiences that we’ve learned from over the past several weeks.  We all have heart-warming and heart-breaking stories to share.  One of the most significant eye-opening realizations for me has been, “what are the needs vs the wants.”  As we begin to introduce our team back into the walls of our Baton Rouge office and warehouse, we have to ask ourselves, “What are those things that we must have that are crucial to our operations and what are those items that fall into the bucket of “well it would be nice if…?”  Don’t get me wrong.  The “wants” are quite important too; they make up our culture and they round-out our daily lives.  Just make sure the needs are met first.  Right now it boils down to masks, gloves, clean air, hand sanitizer, antibacterial soap, and the list continues.

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