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Word from our Affiliates

Last month, I sent a letter to Network Affiliated Instructors and Affiliated Gun Shop members from whom we hadn’t seen booklet orders recently.

While the responses to my letter are still coming in, the mail this week has kept me really busy. I’ve mailed out thousands of copies of the Network’s 24-page booklet, What Every Gun Owner Needs to Know about Self-Defense Law through our local Post Office this week alone. I think the Postmaster is starting to cringe when I come in each afternoon.

I’ve enjoyed the little notes our affiliates have been writing on their response forms. Many admitted that they had planned to ask for more Network booklets but forgot. One gentleman wrote, “Great minds think alike! I was just about to reorder.” Another said, “Our gun department is very active despite the ammo and firearm shortages. Looking forward to some more booklets to give our customers and members of gun clubs we belong to.” Another wrote a nice explanation of the new Illinois CCW license requirements due to be put into effect in January of 2014. “I believe next year your services could very well be needed in Illinois,” he concluded. “I will hand out your booklets to all my customers–gladly.” A gun shop affiliated member from Ohio wrote, “I primarily pass out the booklets when I teach my CCW classes. I strongly urge my students to join, as it will help us all. I will be more aggressive in talking to my regular customers at the shop, also. Thank you for your continued support.”

Several jotted in complaints that they had requested booklets, but did not receive the shipments. Since we do not charge for the booklets or even for shipping them, we keep costs manageable by using the Post Office’s Media Mail rate. Though it reduces the cost of shipping these educational booklets, Media Mail does not have any provision for returns of undeliverable shipments. If for any reason your Post Office is unable to deliver a box of booklets, we at the Network will not be notified.

Unless we hear from you, we will not know that you did not receive the booklets you requested.

I understand that you are frustrated when you don’t get the materials you requested; I’m not too happy about the wasted booklets and postage, either. Please, though, instead of just writing us off, let us know you didn’t get the booklets you need to fulfill your part of the affiliated membership arrangement. We may need a different address or at least to verify the one we used for the missing shipment, but we will ship you another box, because we want you to have the booklets to introduce your clients to the Network.

Now back to the letters I sent to affiliated members last month. Unfortunately, some are coming back unopened and bearing the dreaded yellow “Return to Sender–Unable to Forward” sticker. Either they’ve gone out of business, moved to a new location, or fallen prey to some other misfortune. I’ve been able to locate some, but not all, through email. Then again, sometimes even the email bounces back as undeliverable. Sadly, a few of my letters have come back marked “Deceased,” or bearing a short note that the affiliate had departed this earth. That is always sad to hear, though I appreciate the effort of the family member who takes the time to notify me.

Holding true to the Network’s name and concept of armed citizens networking together for the benefit of all members, I am very pleased with the renewed interest in building Network membership shown by these affiliated instructors and affiliated members from gun shops all across the nation. Thank you to each who took the time to respond.

Network affiliates, if you still have my letter and the blue response envelope sitting unanswered on your desk, please take a moment to respond and let us know if you wish to continue your affiliation with the Network. I appreciate your continued participation, as do other Network members. We’re all in this together.

[End of October 2013 eJournal.
Please return next month for our November edition.]