The month of November will likely be one for the memory books. For the last year we have been overwhelmed with political campaigns, smear tactics, WikiLeaks, and Facebook friends posting irrational commentary that made you legitimately wonder how America has survived up to this point (No, your ability to get a job after college has not been reduced because Trump won the election, that is all on you—work for it).

Amidst all of this chaos in the pre and post election world, a soft launch of the president-elect’s Second Amendment Coalition was barely recognized. You heard that correctly; President-elect Trump formed a coalition with the sole purpose of advising him on matters pertaining to our gun rights. Leading the coalition is Donald J. Trump, Jr. and Chris Cox of the NRA, in addition to 62 co-chairs. Some of these names you may recognize as industry names, like Doug Koenig, Craig Morgan, and 6-time Olympic medal winner Kim Rhode. Other names hail from the political side, the firearms manufacturing world, and then…there’s my name.

How I was ever selected to be on a presidential team of subject matter experts is far beyond me, but to say that I am honored is the understatement of the century. The only reason I have yet to conjure up is my connection to the every-day world and regular civilians—allow me to explain what I mean by that. I am not an Olympic shooter. I am not a world champion. I am not a member of Congress. I am not a firearms manufacturer. I am simply a poor college student who has a passion for getting women involved in shooting, and who takes personal protection and defense very seriously. I may not be a subject matter expert in the same way that these elite names are, but I feel that I can offer the perspective of an average civilian who shoots for hobby and pleasure, an average woman who carries for defense, and an average college student who walks the halls of a gun-free campus (although KSU will allow concealed carry beginning in July 2017).

So, what matters are potentially and hopefully on the to-do list for the Second Amendment Coalition? The first priority on everyone’s wish list is national reciprocity. If you are a legal concealed carry holder, you’re aware of how frustrating it is to leave behind your firearm when you know you will be crossing into a state that doesn’t recognize your license. In other words, your means of defense are limited to state borders. Let’s change that, shall we?

A matter that I would personally enjoy to see discussed further is the removal of current restrictions placed on active-duty service members when in uniform and/or on federal military installations (and civilians on federal installations for that matter). No one can say with 100% certainty that the effects of the Chattanooga shooting would not have been reduced had one of the Marines been carrying. This “what if” scenario applies to all of the shootings that have occurred on military installations. Why render service members helpless? If the golden standard is applied and a service member is deemed fit to carry, I fail to see what the problem is.


An issue that is gaining more traction is the removal of suppressors from regulation under the National Firearms Act. Although they are already possible to obtain in 41 states, the measures to acquire one are beyond absurd considering that they are protective accessories and not in any way harmful. Suppressors effectively reduce noise and protect the hearing of both the shooter and those in “close” proximity. With that, they are highly advantageous to shooters teaching kids, as safeguarding the hearing of youth should be a priority.

These are only three of the many possible issues that are sure to be discussed over the next four years. I am undoubtedly the lowest on the totem pole, and deservedly so, but I am not void of opinions and ideas. The other co-chairs are likely to have just as many, and it will be a joint effort to prioritize and ensure the ball keeps rolling. Four years will pass quickly and it is paramount that we act while we have a Republican-controlled Congress.

I would love to hear your comments on what you consider a second amendment priority.


Theresa Vail is a member of the Kansas Army National Guard, President-Elect Trump’s 2nd Amendment Advisory Coalition, Miss Kansas 2013, and current Host of NRA All Access. 

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  1. Please Over turn New Jersey’s Draconian No CCW laws and Get rid of the Dam Anti gun Democrats
    Loretta Weinberg And Stephen Sweeney!

  2. First thing I would suggest is take suppressors off the any regulation, stop the background checks and the crazy $200 tax state. Second suggestion, allow gun manufactures to produce automatic weapons for law abiding citizens that pass a background check. The Founding Fathers wanted (recommended) that citizens have the right to any weapon that any standing army had in it arsenal, as they feared what a central government might become and what it would do to it’s citizens.

  3. Theresa ,
    Congratulations on your appointment to the presidential coalition . AIM HIGH on all your goals , If you come up short, you’ll still be on target to improve our rights . Your voice will be heard.

    Thank you ?

  4. Congratulations from Junction City
    No expansion of checks for private “gun show ” sales Those with :mental conditions ” Should only be those who are under medical care After all. who hasn,t been called “nuts: at some time Waiting periods should not be allowed Training before purchase ? your kidding Who trains criminals ?
    Bless you for all you do
    thanks ed

  5. I agree with your priority issues, Go forward and we will all be proud of the work you will do.
    YOU ROCK!!!!

  6. While I appreciate your service to this country it might be best if you declined this offer. Politics is a game often fraught with landmines. Perhaps you should consider a full time career in the army.

  7. I think all 51 states should be concealed carried!

  8. My thoughts are mixed about national reciprocity. I feel that power lies with the states and Federal government should stay out of it. But on the flip side I would love for states like California to be forced to honor my right to bear arms. Please consider the repercussions of giving the Fed more power over our rights, even if it helps our cause in the short run.

  9. I am an FFL who lives on the border of three different states. I can sell long guns (rifles and shotguns) to customers in my State of residence as well as any State from my business premises. However, I cannot sell a handgun directly except to residents of my own State. This is an absurd restriction based on the assumption that handguns are more deadly than rifles and require a more restrictive control. In order to sell a handgun to a resident of another State, one mile away in my case, I have to ship it to another FFL in their State of residence.

    This is a ridiculous restriction that has no basis in fact. There are NO studies that indicate that handguns should be treated with greater scrutiny due to their increased lethality.

  10. Jayson Wilkins : Very good article. Theresa Vail an Excellent choice.

  11. Ma’am, Thank you for your service. You sound spot-on with regard to goals, at least for me.

  12. Great just what we need . hope you get all your ideas passed we need them all.

  13. Please let Theresa know I would like to see the “no new machine gun” law go away also.

  14. Keep up the good work Congratulations New York need some Laws changed

  15. Away from the policy side, there should also be a concerted effort to proper information making its way to the public. The amount of misconceptions and utter ignorance of the realities of guns in our society is very depressing. I’m a professional researcher with access to libraries of information and the experience to mine them. It takes me about 30 minutes to take seemingly legitimate studies about the evils of gun ownership and find critical flaws in their statistics/conclusions/etc. But that average American doesn’t have my background or access to primary materials. I’m not saying I know how to fix it, but I think that the more the general public understood about firearms the more support the 2A would have. I’d say leave it to the NRA, but their branding is directed toward those already gun-inclined. My 2 cents for what it’s worth.

  16. Not reciprocity ,we need Diplomatic Carry. Read about it. way better.

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