The NRA: Going armed with intent?

On the off chance that you haven’t read my previous post, please take a couple of minutes to do that. At the end of it I said I’d share my thoughts on the intent of one of the videos linked to that post.

My thoughts, as promised:

The video, like a number of others from the National Rifle Association, was crafted to support more than one objective. The intent isn’t to support the safe, responsible use of firearms, as I remember the NRA doing when I learned about those things as a Boy Scout in the 1960s.

No, today’s NRA wants people to be afraid of each other, so it uses frightening imagery and scare words, often in the form of lies, to engender fear and hate.

Why? The other reasons are pretty clear from this and other NRA messaging:

The NRA does this because its leadership, supported by what we must infer is a large percentage of its membership, believes in white supremacy.

The NRA does what it does to maintain and increase its membership.

The NRA does what it does so that people will buy more and more guns and ammunition.

The NRA’s intent is to maintain and increase its own clout and to keep the American people buying guns and ammo from the association’s corporate backers.

This is all revealed more grotesquely in a newer NRA video that I will not even share here. It is that vile. In one sense, what the NRA does is akin to going armed with intent. That’s a felony in some places.

There’s no doubt that writing with intent and passion can be effective. Depending on the intent, such content can be destructive and even deadly.

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Writing with intent: YouTube, NRA

The other day I wrote these words about writing with intent. The very next day I found a couple of vivid examples of that.

In this one, from YouTube, the intent is crystal clear:

Let’s launch your video marketing campaign

You know exactly what to expect, and you can decide if you want to watch a how-to video about launching a video marketing campaign. Well done.

The intent in this other example is less clear, but see if you can identify at least one of its multiple objectives.

Freedom’s Safest Place | Your Choice

Let me know in a comment what you think the NRA’s intent is with that video. I’ll share my own thoughts on it sometime soon.

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Creating content vs. writing with intent

Creating content is a fuzzy, buzzy phrase that means writing and editing stuff.

backlit keyboardThat stuff might take any number of forms, including news, entertainment, commentary, analysis, scientific papers, technical instructions, training, even clickbait.

Some stuff is still delivered on paper, with ink. Much is delivered digitally in some form: text, video, audio or some combination of those.

Creating content is so easy that we’re awash in the stuff. Just look around.

The more rare good content is different, and the best of that is created with intent.

Creating content with intent is akin to what I call writing with intent. Writing with intent — with a solid grasp of your purpose for writing and disseminating your work — inevitably improves the end result.

Whether your purpose is to inform, instruct, train, sell products, sway votes, incite a riot, make people laugh, or just get clicks, be able to state that purpose clearly before you write a word.

You can’t meet an objective if you can’t articulate it.

Adore the flag? If only we were all adorable

William Tecumseh Sherman may have asked Coloradans to “love, cherish and adore the flag” in 1889, as Cecily N. Zander wrote here in the Denver Post, but asking us to do the same in 2017 seems a bit much. We love and cherish our families, redundant as that may be. People adore their deities. Others seek adoration for themselves.

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Jnn13, US Flag Backlit, CC BY-SA 3.0

Adore the flag? I respect the flag as a symbol of our highest ideals, but despise that same flag when my fellow citizens brandish it like a weapon and spew hate for others while purporting to be patriots.

The flag represents all Americans, and I’m afraid we are not all adorable.

The Trump metaphor for attack on the U.S. Constitution

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The video of Donald Trump’s attack on CNN is a visual metaphor for his own vicious assault on freedom of the press. He swore to preserve, protect and defend the U.S. Constitution but clearly does not respect the rights it guarantees us.
He does not respect you or anyone else.
He clearly is unfit to be president of the United States of America.
 
I’ve seen many comments on the video from his supporters, cheering the image of the “president” taking down the media. Some think it is funny. There is nothing funny about it. It is a serious threat and an incitement to violence against American citizens.
 
Speak out against this.