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BBC News Story on firearms/Femaile/Pres. Election

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by LaEscopeta, Sep 15, 2008.

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  1. LaEscopeta

    LaEscopeta Member

    Feb 23, 2005
    Los Estados Unidos

    Annie, get your gun

    Jon Kelly 15 Sep 08, 06:24 AM GMT

    Carol Ruh cried the first time that she held a gun. Visiting a shooting range in Arizona while on holiday with her husband, her anti-firearms views made the trip an upsetting experience.

    But after she told the staff of her discomfort, she underwent an epiphany.

    "It was one of those life-defining moments," she recalled. "The gentleman behind the counter said: 'It's not the gun that kills, it's the person behind it.' And that made a lot of sense to me.

    "If your heart is that set on doing damage, you can use a chair, a baseball bat, a pen..."

    Since that day, Carol's attitudes have changed completely. Having moved to Phoenix permanently, she now runs classes teaching other female shooters how to hone their skills and heads a group called the Arizona Women's Shooting Association. Every time she leaves the house she reaches for her handbag, her keys and her gun.

    I'm sure you've guessed why I wanted to come to their range. As soon as Sarah Palin's place on the Republican White House ticket was announced, pundits around the world picked over the apparent disparity between the Alaska governor's femininity and her handiness with a rifle.

    And here, too, the lady shooters didn't conform to the stereotype of gun enthusiasts as rabid, wild-eyed survivalists. They'd laid on sandwiches and soda for me and chatted away about their children and careers. They were nice people.

    But I admit that I'm uneasy around guns. I mentioned in my initial post how I've lived through the import of many American phenomena to my homeland - some of them good, some of them bad. The senseless killing of schoolchildren with firearms fell squarely into the latter category.

    Of course, none of the women I met at the range liked violence any more than I did. I could see that they came here for the pleasure of firing at paper targets. All the same, it seemed that guns symbolised something more to them.

    "Darling, you're in the west," laughed Carol. "This was the way of life out here. The whole genre of America was built on the west. It's part of out culture."

    I think she was right about this. Europeans have no second amendment, no folk memory of living in a frontier society.

    And the same applies to other parts of the US, too. Carol said she wouldn't vote for Barack Obama because he and running mate Joe Biden, both supporters of gun control, didn't understand why she loved shooting.

    I wanted to find out what made this culture appealing to women, though, especially after Carol's husband Pete, also a convert, told me that he believes they are better at hitting a target than men.

    "Their hand-eye co-ordination is better," he said. "They're more patient. You don't get any of the macho stuff."

    So I got talking to Andrea Barringer, 27, who was sporting a chunky Glock 9mm on her hip. She'd grown up around guns, firing her first shot at the age of five.

    "I think it's a fun pastime," she told me. "I go out shooting in the desert.

    "Plus, I'm a single woman. If I was ever in that situation..." She left the sentence hanging.

    Andrea hadn't decided to vote yet, but liked the look of Sarah Palin - a "typical American woman" to whom she could relate.

    So too could 56-year-old flight attendant Lorra Moore. She'd only been shooting for a year under Carol's instruction, but hoped that the Alaska governor's prominence would encourage more females to take up the sport.

    "I think it will really help to deflect the fears of women who don't understand guns," she said. "They don't understand that they can use them as easily as a man."

    There was still one thing I wanted to know, though. What did she have to say to those - both American and foreign - who saw massacres like Dunblane and Columbine as a priori arguments for gun control?

    "Those incidents were horrific," she said. "But the bad guys are always going to get the guns.

    "I want to preserve the right of the good guys to protect themselves."

    I nodded. This very American debate would continue long after I'd gone. I got back on the bus with the sound of pistol-fire ringing in my ears.
  2. scrat

    scrat Member

    Jan 27, 2007
    Monrovia, CA
    Nice article very nice indeed
  3. SCKimberFan

    SCKimberFan Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    South of the Mason-Dixon Line
    Perhaps even across the pond there is some hope...
  4. FieroCDSP

    FieroCDSP Member

    Nov 12, 2006
    Wooster, Ohio
    I think Sarah Palin is putting a very visible face on women and the 2A, something long past due.
  5. Rosstradamus

    Rosstradamus Member

    Apr 25, 2004
    Big D
    The broadcast version I heard on the BBC World Service last night was better. The reporter actually shot a gun.
  6. crushbup

    crushbup Member

    Mar 11, 2008
    It was mostly positive, the only things that could be construed as negative are the author's predisposition to dislike guns (to be expected) and this line:
    ... Of course, killing them with bombs as happened in the Bath School Massacre is totally acceptable, right? Heck, back then we didn't have any firearm regulations to speak of (none that I'm aware of; I believe the ones set against blacks in the antebellum south were already abolished) and people didn't use guns. It's the whole "forbidden fruit" thing in my opinion.
  7. JDoe

    JDoe Member

    Jul 12, 2008
    Y'all don't want to read the comments...it looks like one anti has been busy all day writing under different names.
  8. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

    Dec 24, 2002
    Idahohoho, the jolliest state
    [smirk] Is that legal? [/smirk]
  9. macadore

    macadore Member

    Jun 21, 2007
    San Antonio
    Keep reading. Some of us have hit back.
  10. mr.scott

    mr.scott Member

    Jun 4, 2008
    "Perhaps even across the pond there is some hope..."

    There's a video of the British protesting to get their guns back.
  11. Intrepid Dad

    Intrepid Dad Member

    Nov 28, 2006
    Colorado Springs, CO
    There is always hope. Especially when someone with a position to influence others writes positively about the right to keep and bear arms.
  12. Thylacine

    Thylacine Member

    Jun 13, 2004
    Answers like this one really boggle the mind.
    Sure sounds like that "lifelong" Republican is actually a Democrat.
  13. elrod

    elrod Member

    Dec 1, 2006
    Heart of the Heart of Dixie
    ....Or believes in the Constitution as it was written!
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