Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Some Thoughts on Guns in General

Meanwhile, in transit to Lost Angeles...

On one of the morning shows this AM there was a startling piece of video that shows us as gun owners and gun users how far we still have to go to recover any kind of cultural acceptance. There was Brian Williams in New Orleans on St. Charles, talkign to the rich folk who wouldn't leave the city (I looked for this clip on MSNBC and couldn't find it). He interviews one rich guy who's staying to protect his stuff...a fairly rational response.

But they guy has...guns...a shotgun and a pistol...to "frighten" potential looters. In the spoken bridge to the next interview, with four paid security guards (unidentified, but I believe from Blackwater) guarding a high dollar neighborhood with battle rifles, pistols and enough ammo to take over Belize, Brian says, "Well, he scared us!"

Here's the conundrum...Brian felt perfectly comfortable with the armed security guards toting more firepower than most street cops ever carry, but he was frightened of the civilian with guns. Now why should that be? Let's say the four guys were from Blackwater, which is one of the E-Ticket Ride as far as security companies go. You got four guys with indeterminate training getting $200 a day — not Iraq wages, but no IEDs on the side of the road! — who are strictly there for the bucks. That's not a criticism, by the way. A bunch of my friends are down there for their daily bread.

OTOH, you've got a homeowner who only wants to protect what he's worked to earn. But because he's not a victim-in-waiting, Brian gets all shivery.

I hate to generalize from small sets, but I do believe this is emblematic of our overall problems, and it points out a huge failing on the part of the gun industry/community. Yes, we need the NRA and the otehr guys pounding up on the alledgedly legitimate miscreants confiscating guns in the Big Easy, but we also desperately need a cohesive "hearts and mind" initiative from the firearms industry — and I don't see one in sight!

If we are not able to convince the Brian Williams of the world that owning a gun, participating in the shooting sports, or even protecting one's self with a gun is not grounds for them to get the vapors, WE ARE DOOMED TO FAILURE!

As the person who ran the only successful "hearts and mind" program for the industry for five years, I am absolutely baffled why this industry hasn't launched a broader, better funded version, perhaps headed by someone not as...controversial...as myself. We need to be in constant touch with the news media...even Brian Williams! We need to be reaching out to Hollywood, to the local sports pages, to the broader communities we all live in.

And what are we doing? STILL writing lame letters to the editor about the Second Amendment and STILL funding new, improved — and largely worthless — "hunting initiatives" aimed at getting another half-dozen kids into the game fields. NSSF even changed their logo recently to one that ONLY reflects hunting...I'm surprised they didn't change their mission statement to "All Hunting All The Time!"

Even rats learn from experience!


Anonymous said...

Why not list the "names" of those we exposed to firearms(and handguns in particular) in The Media program? After all, there was no expectation of privacy as, at that time, some of the reporters wrote of their experiences.

Walt Rauch

Anonymous said...

This is exactly why I got into doing RKBA modelling. I think it's a great way to show that "average" women can learn about firearms, know how to defend themselves, and take responsiblity for protecting their famlies. No one seems threatened by pics of 120-pound me with my Evil Black Guns. I figure if I can just help acclimate folks a little, I'm doing my part. I agree with you that what we really need is a plan for weakening the cultural divide; getting rid of some of the Us vs. Them barriers.

I offer to take non-gunnies to the range for free all the time - I'll happily pay for a box of ammo if it gets me a convert. An organized movement in the gun community in that same vein would be even better.

shooter said...

I have a friend currently getting his daily bread with Blackwater in The Big Easy. He's not with the media thankfully, but protecting those fixing what is broken. I would really like to know what those guys are thinking about the homeowners doing what is necessary to protect what's theirs. I also wonder why they don't just hog-tie morons like Brian Williams and chunk him into lake Ponchartrain.

Anonymous said...

One big problem is that the main stream media has a large anti-gun bias, and goes out of their way to push that agenda; trying to show firearms in a positive manner is fighting an uphill battle.
Just my opinion...

Anonymous said...

Greetings from the UK. Our version of the NRA is almost as anti-gun as the politicians. They seem to enjoy bending over to take the punishment, selling one section of our sport (self-defence with guns has been banned for many a long year) down the river to save the minority Target Rifle Shooters. Witness their stony silence during the 1997 handgun ban.
Fight for EVERY right otherwise the politicians will erode your freedoms bit-by-bit the same as ours. Try to regain some of the lost ground.
Belatedly, our NRA are realising that they cannot do without the income from pistol shooters amd are trying to force sporting and gallery rifle shooters to join. Far too late I am afraid, I plan to emigrate, taking my life savings with me.

Unknown said...

I really like your writing style. Nice Post keep it up.

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