Each month, as I reflect on pressing topics to include in column, I look forward to highlighting positives, such as growing diversification in the demographics of our industry, or on the great initiatives that NASGW is bringing to help all channels in our industry unite to strengthen our independency on outside forces that serve nothing but the politicians who seek to shut us down. Sadly though, sometimes I need to address topics that we hate to hear about, like the tragic attack in Uvalde, TX. The polarizing debate on gun control is already happening in the news, while families who lost a child are struggling in ways I can’t imagine. Surviving classmates will undoubtedly carry this vision in their minds for the rest of their lives. No one should have to endure such atrocities in this country.
We know so little and probably don’t do enough to try and understand the mental health issues that plague the minds of these troubled individuals that commit these senseless acts. But people capable of carrying out atrocities like this are the ones that shed a horrible light on the firearms industry. Our industry does a great job of educating the public on firearm safety but does little to address mental health as it relates to firearms ownership. Certain organizations, such as Walk The Talk America (WTTA), are helping to educate mental health professionals about gun culture so they can, in turn, understand how to do a better job of recognizing and treating these people so we can help prevent tragic occurrences.
I would encourage everyone in our industry to look into WTTA and see if there is anything you can do to support this initiative. Or perhaps feel that same spark that fueled the idea for WTTA and find new ways to address and help those that are suffering. But at the very least, have open-minded conversations about mental health issues in this country and offer ideas to help bring attention and support to those that need it most. In the end, if we do a better job of communicating issues and offering positive solutions, we’ll help prevent some of these tragedies and bring a more positive light to the idea and right of gun ownership.
Learn more about Walk The Talk America.
On the positive side, as NASGW’s SCOPE platform continues to expand, it’s been exciting and beneficial to see the reporting capabilities grow. The insight provided in the 2022 Q1 report has been quite impactful. Especially when sales have slowed, reviewing and digesting the level of analysis was great for me, my sales team, and my buyers. I’m looking forward to seeing how the data and trends change in Q2. If you haven’t downloaded the full Q1 SCOPE Report yet, I highly encourage you to check it out.
Beyond the reporting capabilities, SCOPE has continued to impress me. An idea brought to the NASGW Board of Directors by Kenyon has grown into a platform that includes distributor sales and inventory, retail sales, and a product data standard platform that will simplify managing products across the industry. I shouldn’t be surprised; however, NASGW and its distributor members are perfectly positioned to compile and aggregate this data and information as a benefit to the industry. Distribution is the hub that drives the industry, and this platform is a way for our association to take a leadership role, our duty. Our mission is to change the way our industry does business through data. The potential for SCOPE is endless, and there are some big plans in the works, but we need your support, your feedback, and your participation to help SCOPE reach its full potential. A big step in that direction is getting SCOPE in the hands of as many members as possible, a goal that is really on the forefront as NASGW heads into 2023; stay tuned.
It certainly is an exciting time to be the Chairman at NASGW. As our association looks to the future of the shooting sports industry and our role, there are big things in the works. The following year will be pivotal as NASGW takes steps toward that future.
Until next time,