Snapshots

Fringe Gun Rights Advocate With Ties To White Supremacists Helped Build Up ALEC

As the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) works to distance itself from the NRA-bill it backed as a “model” adopted in dozens of states, it may be hoping that people will not continue to dig into the damage done by its long love affair with gun groups, like the gun-industry funded NRA and fringe groups with ties to white supremacists like Gun Owners of America (GOA).

GOA’s Executive Director is Larry Pratt. In the early 1980s, Pratt and the GOA were outspoken supporters of the white rulers in South Africa during apartheid, calling a press conference in 1984 to present “evidence” that allegedly tied Bishop Desmond Tutu to an effort to violently overthrow the white minority regime in the country. In 1990, Pratt wrote a book titled “Armed People Victorious” based on his study of death squads in Guatemala and the Philippines, and advocated for similar “citizen defense patrols” in the United States. The idea reportedly caught on in 1992, when Pratt addressed a three-day meeting of neo-Nazis and Christian Adherents organized by white supremacist Pete Peters. He shared the stage with a former Ku Klux Klan leader and an Aryan Nation official.

Pratt also held leadership roles in ALEC for many years. His relationship with ALEC began in 1978, when ALEC began an effort to oppose a constitutional amendment giving the District of Columbia full voting rights in Congress. When Pratt was elected to the Virginia State Legislature in 1981, he took a leadership position in ALEC. He sat on ALEC’s board even after he left the legislature, serving as its treasurer into the 1990s.

FULL ARTICLE: ThinkProgress.

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