March For Our Lives is supposed to be something of a gamechanger in the gun debate. After all, here’s a grassroots effort made up of kids who are demanding gun control as a way to combat school shootings. These may not all be voters, but they’re future voters that lawmakers need to at least consider as they move forward with their legislative agendas.
At least, that was the theory.
The reality, though, seems to be that March For Our Lives is nothing but a big old pile of astroturf.
The gun-control group responsible for a 2018 march on Washington, D.C., raised the vast majority of its funds from undisclosed donations over six figures, a recently released tax document shows.
The March For Our Lives Action Fund, a 501(c)(4) “social welfare” organization launched in the aftermath of the deadly 2018 shootings at Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, is bankrolled almost entirely by large donations in excess of $100,000. The group reported $17,879,150 in contributions and grants over the course of 2018, its first year of operations. Ninety-five percent of those contributions came from 36 donations between $100,000 and $3,504,717—a grand total of $16,922,331.
The group’s reliance on a small number of large donations raises questions about its ability to turn rally-goers and supporters into donors. It also provides ammunition to gun-rights activists who have long cast the gun-control movement as driven not by grassroots supporters, but by billionaire benefactors like Michael Bloomberg.
The group’s 990 tax form shows another 38 donations totaling between $5,000 and $100,000, which together accounted for an additional $876,114 of revenue. The remainder, just 0.5 percent of total receipts, came from those giving less than $5,000.
In fairness, school kids don’t usually have money to donate.
However, the fact is that this kind of fundraising is par for the course for the gun control crowd. That’s because despite what anti-gunners like to proclaim, gun control just isn’t that much of a priority for most people. They just don’t get that worked up about the issue. They might skip work or school to attend a rally, but they won’t put their money up for it because those who are interested in donating are typically looking at other causes first.
Gun control may be something many people support, but it’s not that high up on their personal hierarchies.
That means for gun control groups to function, they need big-money donors like old Mike Bloomberg and his ilk. March For Our Lives, despite claims that it’s different, really isn’t. It’s nothing but another Bloomberg-funded group that seeks to infringe upon our rights.
Not that anyone is overly surprised to learn this, of course. After all, Bloomberg tends to want to have his fingers in all the gun control pies and has enough money that people let him.
Yet the lack of ordinary donors–those who are donating less than $5,000–tells us just how little the ordinary Americans actually value their work and their message.
To be clear, I understand the polls suggest most people want more gun control. However, I’ve disputed the validity of those polls for a while now, and this is another data point that suggests those polls are meaningless.
If people want gun control that badly, why aren’t they backing gun control groups with donations?
After all, the much-vilified NRA gets a lot more in the way of donations in that particular monetary range. Make of that what you will.