I was fortunate enough to be recently featured in several pieces written by a wonderful woman (Aimee Whetstine) and featured, along with several other amazing women, on her blog everday epistle. The topic? Women and guns.
It’s been an amazing experience, having the opportunity to not only have my voice heard on such an amazing platform, but the chance to hear the thoughts and opinions of so many others – especially on a topic that women usually get a back seat on.
I thought it would be a good idea for me to explain my reason for not only owning a gun, but for using it as well.
I commented on Aimee’s BlogHer post that it is NOT the gun itself that gives me a feeling of empowerment. It is the fact that I know how to use the gun, and use it properly, that leaves me feeling more protected and enabled.
Sleeping with a gun under my pillow would do nothing to alleviate my fears of not being protected, if I did not know what to do with it. Likewise, if I were to carry a taser in my purse, yet know nothing about how it works.
The power from a weapon doesn’t just come from the weapon itself…it comes from the peace of mind and knowledge that you gain from owning it. The same is true that the danger of a weapon does not come from the weapon itself…it comes from the person wielding it, their intentions and their ability to use it.
Recently, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved a ban on assault rifles. Although I do not own a single assault rifle, I can’t help but feel a little dismayed and saddened by the votes cast. Eliminating weapons will not magically fix the problem, because the problem does not relate to the weapon used.
As long as we keep throwing bandaids at the true problem, the bandaids will continue to fall off.
The Second Amendment promises the right to bear arms. It says nothing about picking and choosing weapons only deemed “safe” by some outside source. And it also gives you the right to have bare arms…meaning that if you have no desire to own a gun, or to learn how to use one, that is your right as well.
Perhaps we need to start remembering that we need to respect others’ rights…as well as our own.
Val, thank you for sharing your story and photos with me as I explored the topic of women and guns. The current national debate needs to consider the many stories like yours from women (and men) who lawfully exercise the Second Amendment. If we do not respect one anothers’ Constitutional rights, we are lost indeed.