Saturday, June 14, 2014

Up in arms

***This post has been sitting in my draft folder for well over a year. It covers a controversial topic and controversy isn't something I want to get into on this blog. However, after opening it up today and rereading, I am going to post it. I think that this was written shortly after the re-election of our current president and probably around the time of some heated gun control debate. I am not really sure of what the point the point of this was post was supposed to be. Obviously, in some way, I support gun control, education and usage.***

I try to stay out of political conversations and debates. Frankly, I just don't care what your political opinion or affiliation is. We are friends, let's leave it there. Unless of course we are on the same side of the topic. Right? Politics is the main reason why I don't like spending time on Facebook.

Anyway, there is a lot of talk over gun control right now and I feel that either way everyone is damned. If no one addresses it, then shame for not addressing it. If it is, then shame for it not being right, the right time or whatever.

My thoughts? I don't understand why people are up in arms about it. Get it? Up in arms? Arms? Anyway, in July of 2011, the hubs and I took a gun safety class. We took this class with the intent of learning how to use a gun for self protection, should anyone ever break into our home, and to buy one gun for this reason.

When we walked into the class, the first thing you do it pick up a prosthetic gun. For lack of better word, I called it prosthetic, because it wasn't real. It was rubbery or something. The instructors take note of how you pick it up and what you do with it. I am pretty sure that in addition to picking it up with my finger on the trigger, I probably pointed it right at myself or the hubs. That is what I see in movies: Put your finger on the trigger. Long story short, we spent all day learning gun safety, how to operate it, we learned how to use pepper spray, legalities of both and then went to the range to shoot.

My palms were sweaty, my arms were shaking but I did it. I pulled the trigger on a gun. I instantly felt empowered, strong and protected. I was still shaking, but the adrenaline rush I got from it was not something I expected to feel. People "like me" don't shoot guns. Whatever that is supposed to mean ...  I'm not a redneck? I don't know. I was just very resistant to the idea of guns.

We agreed upon and bought one. The hubs would occasionally take me to the shooting range for practice. What good is a gun if I don't know how to use it? And slowly, something started to change. I started to enjoy it.                        

Longer story short, we ended up buying more than just that one. And it has become more of a hobby rather than a form of protection. But you know what? It is done safely, we pay attention to what we are doing when we are doing it and it is all about following gun safety rules. Simple as that.

Here is my point: I don't remember being able to play with paints, markers and glue sticks in school if everyone couldn't use them properly and for their intended purposes. Think about it: bottled glue is not meant to be spread in a thin layer on your hand and peeled off once dry. We all did it, but got in trouble for it. Markers weren't meant for writing on the desks and when we didn't follow the rules, these items were taken away from us. So ... what should be done since we all (as Americans) can't seem to follow the rule with guns?

Would outlawing them and making us give them back solve things? Probably not. Are there people out there who use assault rifles for recreation? Yes, there are. Would I have had a different stance on gun control before taking that class? Yes, I would have.

So I will end this here: I hope that you all keep your minds and your hearts open.

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