So many people freak out when you talk about guns and for good reason. The death toll continues to climb. The NRA is holding us hostage when it comes to weapons and our second amendment rights and guess what? It's one of the things that's help get us into the current sad state of affairs that we're in. We need strong and no nonsense gun rights legislation and we need it NOW. I don't know about you but I've had enough. It's a disgusting state of affairs.
But first a story.
The first time I ever touched a gun was in the company of a woman named Dolly Temple who actually reminds me quite a lot of the women shown above. She was a tough Southern woman who was married to a very wealthy Dr. She was a whole lot like Granny from the Beverly Hillbillies and I loved her. She was a duck hunter and she took me out shooting with her one day. My mother was appalled.
I wasn't into killing animals then and I'm still not. I had respect for her though because I never saw her kill anything that she didn't eat and use all of. She was a good hunter.
However, 29 years ago my life changed. We lived out on our farm and one night we awoke to our basement door being bashed down. This was before the age of cell phones and our shotgun was downstairs. The dog didn't bark and suddenly there were very loud footsteps tramping through the house and rummaging through my kitchen. I'm a cook so I've got big knives. I was terrified. My son Alex, just a baby then was asleep in his crib.
Jim stood upstairs with a crystal decanter in his hands ready to break to use as a weapon. I was on the land line with the police, this was before cell phones and 911.
Talk about 10 minutes of agony.
When the police finally showed up it turned out that it was our barn boy who had gotten totally drunk, taken a quaalude and blacked out. It also turned out that we were lucky. He had a record in 5 counties and plenty of warrants out for his arrest.
Shortly after that I learned to shoot. One of my closest friends who was head of East Cleveland homicide taught me how even though I was unbelievably reluctant. I still remember the day. He and I guy who was an ex Vietnam vet took me up back to our pasture and they set up a target. Then they put out more firepower than I'd ever seen in one place. Before I even shot one of them I got all the rules. I went through about 6 guns that day, learning about each one of them. They wouldn't let Jim watch, but he came up later and I still remember Rick saying.."Ok Jim...watch this!" and then I'd aim and hit the target. I won't lie. I felt immediately safer knowing that I could protect myself if I'd needed to. I learned to shoot well. I learned gun safety and I have never been afraid of guns since then.
For the record. I think assault weapons are awful. I cannot think of one instance that I'd ever want to shoot one. No one needs one. I shot lots of handguns that day and I hated the semi-automatics. They were too easy, hence all of the issues that we're having right now. I'll never forget what Big Al told me. He said that if you couldn't handle the problem with 6 bullets, than you shouldn't ever dream of picking up a gun and I still think that he was right. I don't know anyone with the exception of a military man or woman that I'd trust with a huge assault rifle or even a semi automatic handgun. They've had the training to know when and how to use one. The civilian population is buying them for emotional reasons and conspiracy theories. No wonder we're all feeling a bit skittish. They are purely a symptom of testosterone poisoning and out of control toxic masculinity as far as I'm concerned.
What upsets me a lot right now about this assault rifle fueled environment is that the good liberal gun owners have had to go underground. We've given away our right to even talk about the second amendment which is why it's been claimed by a bunch of guys and gals openly carrying around their guns as if they were phallic extensions. I know that I haven't spoken up because I've been so horrified by the violence and if I even mention that I enjoy shooting, I get looked at and spoken to as if I were the anti-christ. I get the ..."I don't approve of guns" or "I would never have a gun" . Fine...don't, but stop demeaning those of us who feel differently. We've given away our right to talk about the second amendment with any real power because the liberal gun rights activists are not speaking up. Perhaps we're the reason that they can so easily paint our candidates as wanting to take away their guns.
No more. This liberal is out of the closet. I enjoy shooting and I'm very glad that I know how to. I'm also a peace loving rock and roll hippy. The two are not mutually exclusive.
Be Visible. Take a stand. No more senseless gun deaths.
I love this photograph. Don't know where it comes from but I so appreciate it.