Today I was reflecting on the U.S. Appeals court conceding that the 2nd Amendment allows for the open carrying of a gun, it felt like a victory, kind of sort of like one. Well honestly more like re-affirmation of obviousness than a victory, but still it wasn’t a defeat. Or was it? The judge stated “for better or for worse, the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense.” What did he mean by for better or for worse? And what has happened to our country if this is even up for debate? It was kind of nice to see the 9th Circuit Court have to relent that one, but maybe I’m being petty. Either way, regardless of how it made me feel, where do we go from here? What’s next?
It’s always fascinating to me how people react to guns, to conversations about guns, their view of you when you find out you own a gun. There is this automatic distrust, as if your very intentions are dangerous. I think it’s that unsettling fear derived from the knowledge that someone with a gun can hurt you from a distance greater than arm’s length, not considering the amount of injuries that occurs within arm’s length versus that which occurs from further away. But regardless there is a mystical aura that surrounds the gun owner, a stigmatism that needs to shift.
Let’s consider the average Soccer Mom, she wants to drink her Vanilla Soy Frappe, drive her minivan and generally just enjoy the day. She wants life to be safe and perfect, and rightfully so, don’t you want the same? Her knowledge of guns is what she sees on tv or hears about on the news, meaning 99% of her gun knowledge is watching someone shooting someone (the other 1% is when the detective slaps his gun and badge on his commander’s desk). Isn’t it fair that she then perceives guns as dangerous? Isn’t that how indoctrination works?
So give her a gun to hold, she’ll mistrust it, herself and you. It’ll no doubt be a quick encounter with her passing it back rapidly. Now hand the same soccer mom a shiny new iPhone. And watch her eyes light up, she’ll handle it with skill and familiarity. Then ask her which one kills more people.
My intention here isn’t to stereotype Soccer Moms. Or to draw attention to the blatant misuse of cell phones in society today. It’s to remind you that comfort comes with familiarity. If someone was reminded of how many people have been hurt due to cell phone misuse every time they see one, it would have a much darker stigma around it. So reverse that trend and apply it to firearms. Go out and open carry. Go out and represent yourself as a responsible firearm owner, one that works to promote safety and security in society. We are gaining traction. So let’s continue doing the things that will change the hearts and minds of the people around us. Research your local laws of course, because oppression still exists, but if you are a firearm owner, if you have proper training, and if you’re willing to be the person who steps up in a situation that may demand action (even if you’re not), then I challenge you to wear that firearm.