NRA Recruits YouTube Gun Enthusiast for Minority Ad Campaign

The National Rifle Association has teased a video featuring Colion Noir aimed to appeal to the black community.

Gun rights supporters listen to former Republican congressional candidate Mia Love speak at a gun rights rally at the Utah State Capitol in Salt Lake City, Utah, March 2, 2013.
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The National Rifle Association is reaching out to one minority group in a new slew of ads that encourage blacks to own firearms.

The NRA is working to expand its appeal to minorities, with Internet gun enthusiast Colion Noir leading the charge.

Noir will make appearances on NRA News in upcoming months, making the case for why the black community is highly susceptible to gun violence and why they should protect themselves not with just handguns, but so-called assault weapons.

"No one wants to fight for protection, they want the government to do it. The same government who at one point hosed us down with water, attacked us with dogs and wouldn't allow us to eat at their restaurants and told us we couldn't own guns when bumbling fools with sheets on their heads were riding around burning crosses on our lawns and murdering us," says Noir in a preview ad for the NRA.

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"It is not a gun problem, it is not even a violence problem. It's a culture problem. It's a poverty problem. It's a history problem. The only person responsible for your safety is you. Cops can't always be there. Obama definitely can't be there. This isn't a black or white, Democrat or Republican issue. This is common sense, self preservation, natural rights." Noir, a self-proclaimed "urban gun enthusiast" has broad appeal online, attracting more than 7 million viewers on his YouTube channel, more than 3,000 Facebook subscribers and more than 9,000 Twitter followers. Noir has gained a wide audience addressing subjects such as the assault weapons ban to why black leaders oppose guns.

When asked about the campaign, the NAACP said the NRA is using false information to recruit vulnerable youth.

"They are convoluting the history to support the mischief to have more guns on the street," says Hilary Shelton, director of the NAACP's Washington Bureau. "The loss of African-American life is not the clan pulling the trigger. When you look at what is happening now in the African-American community, it is because of destitution and easy access to guns."

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According to research, black males are at the greatest risk of being victims of gun violence. They are 15 times more likely to be killed with a firearm than a white male, and more than twice as likely of being killed by a gun than a Hispanic male.

The Kaiser Family Foundation reported last month that more than 40 percent of blacks say they have a friend or family member who was a victim of gun violence.

Historically, black voters have been some of the greatest supporters of gun control measures, including an assault weapons ban. A Pew Poll released in January showed blacks preferred controlling gun ownership over those who prioritized gun rights by a margin of 66 percent to 24 percent.

The NRA's approach is to go after black voters who are among the most open to gun control provisions and encourage them to buy firearms as a means of protection.

"I don't want a Glock when they have an AK. I want an AK," Noir says in the new video. "'I wish I had less bullets,' said no one who's been in a gun fight. Guy telling me to get rid of my guns when I need them the most isn't my friend, isn't looking out for my best interest and doesn't speak for me or the community that I am part of. "

Repeated E-mails and calls to the NRA were not returned.

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