Can we have a frank discussion here?

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Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Chuck » Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:20 am

Is interest waning on gun rights in this state?
Has OFCC somehow pi**ed you off?
Have I perhaps, being the newest board member, gotten on your wrong side?

Membership is down, ticket sales to the PITP are down, even though OFCC is active as ever in both the courts and in the legislature.
I see many longtime forumites here who used to have Site Supporter or Patron badges under their name who do so no longer, people that I respect.
How can we win you back?

Talk to me / us
Ain't activism fun?

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And because I can not do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can do.
What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of GOD, I will do."
- Edward Everett Hale (descendant of Nathan Hale)
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby djthomas » Sun Jul 23, 2017 10:43 am

Well, since cross posting is against the rules, I'll restate by reference everything I said in December (scroll down to the last post of the thread) to not a single response from anybody in a position to give a damn.

There's other things too, but I can't find the energy to thoughtfully bring them up. The time for that was seven months ago but nobody was interested in a conversation then, so what's different now other than the fact that the finances are a bit light?

There's a saying in the business world that I think very much applies here too: Perception is reality. Notwithstanding all the stuff going on behind the scenes, ask yourself what is the perception? Because if members, potential/former members, and the public perceive OFCC a certain way then all of the other stuff does not matter. Falling back on the "we're all volunteers" mantra to excuse perceived shortcomings in communication, executive involvement, or whatever only works to an extent because at the end of the day perception is reality.

In case my December comments weren't clear here's my perception: OFCC is the pet project of a few people who are barely involved anymore and efforts to help the organization grow and evolve by anybody not in the good old boys' club are structurally and systemically discouraged (exhibit A: the bylaws).

Good luck.
Last edited by djthomas on Sun Jul 23, 2017 11:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby jeep45238 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 11:17 am

Life is hectic and money is tight. Priorities are elsewhere in my personal life.

Can't speak for others, but I will say that when politics (internal or external) become a priority, I'm usually done. Might be until politics bypasses and focus goes back to the mission, might be permanent depending on the situation.

My biggest gripe with Ohio gun issues is this damn divide between OFCC and BFA. Bury the hatchet and work together is my advice - and if that's happened, it sure doesn't appear that way.

Perception is reality.
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby sodbuster95 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:34 pm

Well, since you asked...

Speaking only for myself, I have maintained my Patron status since the inception of the tiered memberships principally as I see limited options for my actual participation in the organization. I try to remain active in the forums, but I admit even that has waned over time.

I recognize that there are some limited volunteer opportunities (such as representing at gun shows, etc) but my occupation and other obligations simply don't afford me the ability to expend my time engaging in this type of volunteerism. I haven't attended a PITP as the location makes such attendance somewhat prohibitive for me - again - given the time involved. Ultimately, the demands of my current practice and other volunteer programs I participate in make my time my principal asset. I must exercise diligence in determining how best to expend that asset. A day at a gun show handing out pamphlets, sorting incoming mail, or performing other logistical support roles may well be worthwhile activities, but they are not ones that are well suited to my circumstances.

Perhaps others, like me, view this organization as meritorious and worthy of attention, but simply don't see a productive way to participate. I don't suggest, however, that I have a solution to that issue. And so, for now, I will simply maintain my annual Patron membership, drop by here when I can, and wait to see if there's something more I might do down the line.
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Chuck » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:06 pm

jeep45238 wrote:My biggest gripe with Ohio gun issues is this damn divide between OFCC and BFA. Bury the hatchet and work together is my advice -



Sometimes that just isn't possible, believe me, we've tried.
I've tried personally. It goes deeper than any petty personal differences. There are major philosophical differences between them and us.

Mostly, they prefer the NRA's approach of one size fits all for Ohio gun rights. A few years back they lobbied extensively to remove the Ohio legislature's ability to determine who can and who cannot own a gun in Ohio and leave it entirely to the US congress, enabling thousands of fifth degree felons to own guns legally. Their disdain for our efforts was obvious when OFCC was trying to stop that stupid hidden compartment bill, and they didn't think we needed an exception for a compartment for hiding a gun. And rumor has it that they've agreed to reducing the notification penalty instead of repealing it.

I think that we are more responsive to our members, as evidenced by HB 142 and other bills, burden of proof, etc.
We are truly grassroots.
They take more of a corporate attitude, where the higher ups decide what action they're doing. They don't care if the little guy wants what they want, they have a marketing department that tells the masses what they should want instead.

Gun rights is a means to make money for them
Not for us

Still though, we try
We support every BFA bill out there at the present time, as written
Ain't activism fun?

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And because I can not do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can do.
What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of GOD, I will do."
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Chuck » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:15 pm

djthomas wrote:Well, since cross posting is against the rules, I'll restate by reference everything I said in December (scroll down to the last post of the thread) to not a single response from anybody in a position to give a damn.

There's other things too, but I can't find the energy to thoughtfully bring them up. The time for that was seven months ago but nobody was interested in a conversation then, so what's different now other than the fact that the finances are a bit light?

There's a saying in the business world that I think very much applies here too: Perception is reality. Notwithstanding all the stuff going on behind the scenes, ask yourself what is the perception? Because if members, potential/former members, and the public perceive OFCC a certain way then all of the other stuff does not matter. Falling back on the "we're all volunteers" mantra to excuse perceived shortcomings in communication, executive involvement, or whatever only works to an extent because at the end of the day perception is reality.

In case my December comments weren't clear here's my perception: OFCC is the pet project of a few people who are barely involved anymore and efforts to help the organization grow and evolve by anybody not in the good old boys' club are structurally and systemically discouraged (exhibit A: the bylaws).

Good luck.


And I'm sorry for not responding to that post back then, but I really had no response to it.
The issues you bring up are things I can't control, can't fix, so I try to spend my time on something I can do.
Right now it's the PITP until the legislature starts back up.

If you want more information about what's happening behind the scenes, meaning with legislation or lawsuits, we can probably work something out.
I worry about it appearing that I am the only one doing anything, so I perhaps don't communicate on here as often as I should

Your last paragraph is exactly what I have to deal with behind the scenes that I won't talk about. But I will say that we are trying to make it work too.
That Director Emeritus thing? That could be good for us
Ain't activism fun?

"Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company. " - George Washington

"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something.
And because I can not do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can do.
What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of GOD, I will do."
- Edward Everett Hale (descendant of Nathan Hale)
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Chuck » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:57 pm

sodbuster95 wrote:Well, since you asked...

Speaking only for myself, I have maintained my Patron status since the inception of the tiered memberships principally as I see limited options for my actual participation in the organization. I try to remain active in the forums, but I admit even that has waned over time.

I recognize that there are some limited volunteer opportunities (such as representing at gun shows, etc) but my occupation and other obligations simply don't afford me the ability to expend my time engaging in this type of volunteerism. I haven't attended a PITP as the location makes such attendance somewhat prohibitive for me - again - given the time involved. Ultimately, the demands of my current practice and other volunteer programs I participate in make my time my principal asset. I must exercise diligence in determining how best to expend that asset. A day at a gun show handing out pamphlets, sorting incoming mail, or performing other logistical support roles may well be worthwhile activities, but they are not ones that are well suited to my circumstances.

Perhaps others, like me, view this organization as meritorious and worthy of attention, but simply don't see a productive way to participate. I don't suggest, however, that I have a solution to that issue. And so, for now, I will simply maintain my annual Patron membership, drop by here when I can, and wait to see if there's something more I might do down the line.


Thank you for your support, sodbuster,

Our bread and butter members, Site Supporters and Patrons, pay the bills for our webhosting, etc
And you guys are very important to us.
Thus,,, this thread
Ain't activism fun?

"Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company. " - George Washington

"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something.
And because I can not do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can do.
What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of GOD, I will do."
- Edward Everett Hale (descendant of Nathan Hale)
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby XDSC9G30 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:13 pm

I guess I will make my fourth post of the 2017 calendar year on this. As you can see by my post count and frequency I have slowed my participation on the forum dramatically. I have also been one of those who have in the past been a "Site Supporter" or whatever else it was called and stopped contributing monetarily. I will give some of the reasons, most of which DJthomas, Sodbuster and Jeep have already brought up. You asked for a frank discussion so I will keep it there. Hopefully what I am about to type is not too harsh of a critique.

This site/forum has appeared to simply become a dumping ground for the "Good 'ole boys" so to speak. Simply scrolling through and looking at how certain members speak to new members as well as some more veteran members is ridiculous. How do you expect to honestly increase membership/dues when the "Good 'ole boys" are pretty much allowed to treat others however they please(which is generally like crap). I don't want to call anyone out by name but we all know who those individuals are.

Keeping along the same lines as the Good ole boys, there are now bylaws, boards etc that simply reiterate who that group is. This is essentially becoming everything you say you do not like about BFA. Such structures echo a much more corporate style environment than you are portraying here. There is no need for that type of structure in a "grass roots" organization as you put it. This creates a political type feel, which I don't involve in my hobbies- see my lack of recent involvement on the forums.

Things meant to bring together the group for enjoyment, socializing etc are too constant and stagnant. As Sodbuster said it is very hard to find time for those of us living in NW, SW, SE, NE Ohio to visit central Ohio on one particular day for PITP. A simple idea would be to move the event yearly to allow easier access for other parts of the State. However, this would require more effort from whoever plans this. Maybe instead of creating bylaws the time could've been spent here.

OFCC has become so much less visible throughout the state as a result of the above outlined items among others. That same lack of exposure is not exactly aiding in bringing in new members. All of these items revolve around each other and without more positive exposure and a more inviting/active forum presence by members there won't be any useful growth. Without that useful growth this group has simply become something for the board/higher up members to stroke their egos by saying they helped found, build, plan etc. the organization and its events.

That is about everything I can come up with in 2 minutes of thinking on the topic. Sorry if this isn't exactly what people want to hear but you asked for a frank discussion.
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Mustang380gal » Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:29 pm

As a moderator, I try to keep discussions on topic and civil, and that includes conversations between long-term users and new users.

I understand that you do not want to call anyone out on the open forum, and I appreciate that. I would appreciate examples of people treating people badly in private, please. I cannot see every single post, and there are only a few of us that moderate. If you see such behavior again, please hit the report button, and shoot me a PM. I get emails alerting me to those, and I can try to take care of any unwanted behavior promptly.

Also, I am not sure exactly what your complaint about organizational structure is about. If we are incorporated by the state as an organization, and we are, the state requires bylaws, certain offices, and specific ways of doing things. If we want to continue to be law-abiding people, that means we follow Ohio laws about how organizations are run. In fact, the Party in the Park is our annual meeting that is required by the state. We can decide it is in the park, but we have to have a yearly meeting.

As far as the BFA, that is a case of "it takes two."

I was at an event several years ago, and met a former forumite from here who left to participate on BFA's forum. I recognized the forum name, and introduced myself. Immediately, he went into why BFA is the better organization, how they were the ones wronged when the split happened, and that they were completely innocent in their actions. Everything was thrown completely on OFCC.

I have gone to BFA's website before, on occasion. The amount of OFCC-bashing was absolutely astounding.

We can really want to reconcile. But it takes two. Based on the conversation that I had, and the posts that were not challenged by moderators there, I am lead to believe that they don't want to reconcile.

That being said, I don't understand why the fact that there are 2 Ohio groups with similar but slightly different missions bothers people. No one seems to think that GOA should join up with NRA, or that either organization should go away. As a matter of fact, there are at least 2 other Ohio groups that are on FB, if I remember right. Why is no one worried that OFCC join up with them?
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby zeko » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:41 pm

Concerning the PITP, is it presently known who is scheduled to speak in the afternoon? If so, posting the information (perhaps as an update to the notice on the home page) might help boost attendance a bit.

Our daughter and her family moved here from out of state last year; she and I are registered to be at the PITP this year. I hope she has a good experience.

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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby carmen fovozzo » Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:31 am

MY 2 cents.

OFCC when it started was new and exciting to everyone because it helped us to get educated in how to get our CHL....learn the laws of carry, what to do and what not to do.

IT's like Anything else, the newness has worn off, most of us have been CC for years, we discusussed ammo guns holsters optics and everything else..old stuff...
I don't think that most members have vanished because of anyone or any one thing...I think we are over saturated with "gun stuff".
Speaking for myself, I hope we continue to have this forum and that it's leaders continue to do a good job as they have in the past.

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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby TSiWRX » Tue Jul 25, 2017 9:51 am

^ I agree that "Forum"-type community online participation has really declined over the course of the past 4 to 5 years. And it's not just here at OFCC, but throughout the Internet. Many of the Forum communities I belong to have noticed this trend, with members posting threads about this very observation, that as social media has taken hold, much of the "discussion" and other interactions have moved on to those platforms.

That said, I am also registered on the OFCC FB Group...and it doesn't seem like there's an uptick in participation there.
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Bombarde32 » Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:30 pm

My unfiltered thoughts:

Is it possible that interest is related to the present vs. previous Presidential administrations? When people feel backed into a corner, they may be more inclined to close ranks with like minded people on sites like this.

Look no farther than the decline in gun sales (or so I've heard) versus the huge run up post Sandy Hook etc. Just as Obama is trotted out as "best firearms salesman ever", perhaps the perceived comfort / lack of threat with the present administration has led to relative complacency?

Just my suspicions, right, wrong, or otherwise!

I still value the site and feel like there are now more genuine enthusiasts and fewer vocal conspiracy theorists.

Mark
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Aesinsp » Tue Jul 25, 2017 7:37 pm

Chuck wrote:Is interest waning on gun rights in this state?
Has OFCC somehow pi**ed you off?
Have I perhaps, being the newest board member, gotten on your wrong side?

Membership is down, ticket sales to the PITP are down, even though OFCC is active as ever in both the courts and in the legislature.
I see many longtime forumites here who used to have Site Supporter or Patron badges under their name who do so no longer, people that I respect.
How can we win you back?

Talk to me / us

Chuck,
What is your time frame of things are 'down' ?
As eluded to by another post, the change of the POTUS really brought a sigh of relief to me.. but not to the point of removing $$ support from OFCC.
I've personally not followed the BFA/OFCC difference in 'belief/conflict/goal'..
The enemy's goal is chaos and division.. United we stand - divided we fall.
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Re: Can we have a frank discussion here?

Postby Chuck » Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:53 pm

Aesinsp wrote:
Chuck wrote:Is interest waning on gun rights in this state?
Has OFCC somehow pi**ed you off?
Have I perhaps, being the newest board member, gotten on your wrong side?

Membership is down, ticket sales to the PITP are down, even though OFCC is active as ever in both the courts and in the legislature.
I see many longtime forumites here who used to have Site Supporter or Patron badges under their name who do so no longer, people that I respect.
How can we win you back?

Talk to me / us

Chuck,
What is your time frame of things are 'down' ?
As eluded to by another post, the change of the POTUS really brought a sigh of relief to me.. but not to the point of removing $$ support from OFCC.
I've personally not followed the BFA/OFCC difference in 'belief/conflict/goal'..


For example, we've barely sold twenty percent of the tickets for PITP we usually do
That's a lot of people not coming who usually do.
I know I'm not the best at promoting things like this, but still

We only had about half the people sign on for our advocacy day at the statehouse as the time before, even though we're doing more.

That's two examples from this calendar year
Ain't activism fun?

"Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company. " - George Washington

"I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something.
And because I can not do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can do.
What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of GOD, I will do."
- Edward Everett Hale (descendant of Nathan Hale)
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