Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Bring a Gun Control Person to the Shooting Range

Gamasutra published a wonderful op-ed by Amy Kalson about her conversion.

I have a confession to make: I have become an all-American semi-automatic owning secret gun lover. Fifteen years ago I was giving money to anti-gun groups, and now I am a gun owner with a membership to the local firing range.

How did this happen? You know what I'm about to say, but before you start throwing rocks at my head, please hear me out.

The video games made me do it.
The rest of the story indicates that it wasn't so much the interest in video games as the suprisingly positive experience she had at the range.

I loved it almost instantly. It wasn't the feeling of power or the knowledge that I was using a deadly weapon that I liked. It was the concentration and precision – the stillness it took to line up the sights, relax, and squeeze the trigger. It was much more zen and stress-relieving than I ever expected it to be. Guns demand your attention. You cannot think about anything else when you hold one in your hand. I loved the way my mind would go completely quiet while shooting. Also, the gun went boom and blew a hole in something, and that was satisfying, in the same way popping bubble wrap is.
Her experience definitely seems to support that silly pro-gun suggestion that all you have to do is take one of us to the range and we'd be convinced. One problem I see is that most of the gun control folks I know have already been to the range.

But, what do you think? Please leave a comment.


  1. I will agree that shooting guns can be fun. I've been to shooting ranges, learned rifle shooting in Boy Scouts, and have fired a semi-automatic assault rifle and pistols that belonged to a friend. It's fun to try to hit a target. And I don't have a problem with most gun enthusiasts as long as they are safe about it and are willing to support tightening gun accessibility to those who would abuse the right.

    But I don't have to be an extremist to enjoy a shooting session, or even a gun owner.

    The reason I say the article is hogwash is that no one who supports measures to reduce gun violence, especially to the point of donating, is going to suddenly turn around and call us "anti-gun". If it's true, then she never clearly understood our goals. I've said it a thousand times, but even if the gunloons refuse to believe it, GUN CONTROL ISN'T ABOUT BANNING ALL GUNS FOR ALL PEOPLE. It's not "anti-gun", and it's not about preventing people from going to the shooting range.

    Nor is it about banning "shooter" video games, though I'd say that children shouldn't be exposed to it due the glorification of violence and the desensitization that they cause to developing minds.

  2. The problem is, gun control inevitably leads to banning all guns for all people.

  3. Of course it does not.

    Look at other countries with gun restrictions across Europe; they still have gun clubs and shooting ranges and people who belong to these organizations, people who routinely and often shoot their firearms, and who hunt.

    That, TennBud, is as ill-founded, as ficitious, as your assertion that abstinence only sex ed works.

    There is clear, incontrovertable evidence your opinion is factually inaccurate.

  4. "You cannot think about anything else when you hold one in your hand."


    My neighbor recently had to put her ex-husband in a nursing facility (he's suffering from dementia and other physical problems. She asked me to do some work at his home to clean out accumulated trash and do some repairs.

    One day, while I was doing some chore or other, she asked me to look at her husband's old gun. She didn't know what it was and whether it still worked. It turns out to be an Ithaca Featherweight, Model 37, 16 ga. It's in reasonably good shape and appears to be clean other than some slight surface rust.

    I know a number of hunters and a few firearms collectors and I asked several of them what they thought of the weapon and whether they thought it might have some value. They were all extremely generous with information.

    I am hardly anti-gun, I LIKE guns, I just don't need any, nor do I need to fire any. That is not to say I never have or never will. If I was anti-gun, I would have told the lady that the gun was junk and I would have offered to render it harmless with my 12# sledge.

    Unlike Mikeb302000 I am not opposed to hunting. I don't understand others' need to shoot animals but I don't dismiss it as senseless bloodlust (not that there isn't plenty of that involved in some peoples' hunting).

    Otoh, stockpiling gunz and ammo, for home protection, while not taking sensible precautions like installing better locks, alarm systems and area lighting around the property strikes me as nonsensical if not delusional.

    I hope the young lady who wrote the article brought along a change of underwear, it sounds as if she had an gunzorgazm.

  5. No, one trip to the range will not convert everyone. Only those with an open mind.

  6. A trip to the range would probably not change your hard-core anti that has their mind made up already. At least no more than you can convince your average gun loon that a ban on a box with a spring in it is going to lower the murder rate.

    However, for your average person that may be open to the gun control rants in the media, a trip to the range does usually convert them. The number one quote from first time shooters I have witnessed is something to the effect of "wow, that wasn't near as scary as I thought it would be".

    A trip to the range is like Round-up squirted on the anti's grass-roots. Once you remove the fear for your average hoplophobe, they stop being anti's.

  7. Me, a hoplophobe?

    FWM, you've never been to my house. Of course, I have more edged weapons than loud and noisy ones.

    Likewise, Dog Gone has a permit to carry and owns a 1911.

    Personally, I think that allowing crazies and criminals ready access to firearms is not only anti-gun, but it's anti-social as well.

    After all, it is rather well documented that terrorists use the ready availability of firearms in the us to their advantage.

    So much for "necessary to the security of a free State".

  8. But.... she is too smart....August 9, 2011 at 9:29 PM

    to own a gun....

    Likewise, Dog Gone has a permit to carry and owns a 1911.


    Post a permit or STFU.....

  9. Actually it is rather well documented that some al-Queda leader thinks you can buy anything you want at an American gunshow much like you can in a Pakistani Village.

    But it is not well documented that terrorists have ever used legally obtained firearms against us in any number.

  10. "Post a permit or STFU....."

    Yep, you guys set the precedence here. Post the state and permit # or it didn't happen.

  11. Which of us are you addressing, because more than one of hold permits.

    If it is me you are referring to, I don't need to prove anything to you so long as I satisfy my fellow admins - and I believe Laci can vouch for my credentials.

    I have in every case provided more than adequate support for my statements, far more than the rest of you do.

    I'm assuming anonymous YOU are not revealing any personally identifying information? You can't even come up with a distinctive blogging ID.

  12. Anon bloggers, hey post your info

    (or I can post your IP addresses)

    Or STFU.

    She owns a 1911.

  13. I do so have a hard time taking the mikeyw's of the world seriously when they won't even use their own blognomens to post here.

  14. Calling all hypocrites.....August 10, 2011 at 2:53 AM

    Laci The Dog said...

    Anon bloggers, hey post your info

    (or I can post your IP addresses)

    Or STFU.

    And what exactly will posting our IP addresss prove, other than you have blog admin privlidges.....

    She owns a 1911.

    And all this would prove, if she really does own a gun.... (which I don't believe in the least)

    dog gone said...

    Which of us are you addressing, because more than one of hold permits.

    so you are saying all of the admins are hypocrites, or elitiest douches or liars?

  15. All of the admins hold similar but not identical beliefs about gun violence, and the prevelence of illegal guns and the relatd dangers of illegal firearm violence.

    Owning a firearm legally, and being willing ourselves to comply with stricter regulation to own firearms legally, is not elitist, hypocritical, or dishonest.

    The problem appears to be rather your failures to apply logic and to pay attention. It tends to be a failure of those who are ideologues rather than pragmatists or reality based fact checkers.

    Disbelieve my gun ownership if it pleases you; it will simply be one more reason to laugh at you and your deficiencies.

  16. democommie, thanks for that comment above in which you elaborated a bit on your attitudes towards guns. The gun rights guys usually keep us laughing so much we don't often have a chance to get serious.

    I think the first-time experience at a gun range can be telling. The weaker and more insecure a person is the more likely they are to get into it. And it goes from there. The biggest gun lovers are the most insecure ones, deep down. With many of them you woulnd't know it by looking at them, but inside they're frightened little people.

    The one's who don't suffer from these mental inadequacies, are the ones who can own guns and not become fanatical about them, or not own guns at all.

  17. No, Mikeb302000, I am a scaredycat. I'm afraid to even shoot a gun at somebody else 'cuz they such loud BANG sounds! And if I was lucky enough to be able to hit something the size of human from less than 20' away, well, the blood and stuff-jeez, no thanks!

    I finally went out and got something appropriate for home defense.

    My elderly neighbor is, unfortunately, terminally ill with liver cancer. She offered me her "home protection" equipment, which I gladly accepted. That equipment is called, "Buddy". He's 15 pounds of neuteredmacho killing machine. He is currently napping after another night of single-pawedly keeping the home invaders, islamocommonists and jackbooted Obamacops at bay.

    Buddy's more better than a gun; he never needs to be reloaded and he'll never, EVER stop! He's a full-auto, ankle snappin' dachsmutt.