Thursday, December 1, 2011

Guns Guns Guns!

   I own guns. There, I said it. I'm a gun owner.

   In some circles it's not politically correct to own guns, let alone state the fact publicly.  At one time I had someone come into my home and as soon as they learned that I was a gun owner and actually had "one of those things" in my house, they became visibly agitated - as if I were going to start taking shots at them for the fun of it. Maybe I should have, just to prove that I was one of those crazy gun nuts!

      I have been involved with guns of one sort or another since I was five or six years old; my parents bought me a BB gun for my birthday. I was in heaven!  My father taught me to shoot it. He was a Marine Corps sniper in WWII and Korea. He knew how to shoot! Over the years he taught me what I needed to know.

   We once had a problem with feral cats around our home (see: Cats, I Hate Cats). I would occasionally go outside to "take care of" a cat that had the poor judgement to stand still long enough for me to grab my .22 and make it to the back door. Afterward my wife would ask: "Did you get him?" I would just respond, "Of course" as if there was any doubt. In fact there is never any doubt. I always hit what I aim at. I'm good. Not bragging, just a fact. My Dad taught me well.

   During a visit a year or so before he passed away, we went out and shot at some ground squirrels (often called prairie dogs). They are about as large as a man's fist. Dad pointed to a spot about 50 yards away and told me he was going to shoot that squirrel right in the eye. I could barely see the little thing. It was in it's burrow and just barely peeking over the lip of the mound around it's home. Dad shot and a puff of dust rose up from his .22 striking the dirt. We walked over and he pulled the squirrel from the hole. He had done exactly what he had said he would do. Right through the eye! A few minutes later I made virtually the same shot at another squirrel. "I taught you well, grasshopper!" he said. High praise! We laughed. It was a very good day!

   When I was in the military, during basic training, one of the instructors was teaching marksmanship but doing so somewhat poorly. I made a suggestion (not very well received but he listened to what I had to say about the way he was explaining the fundamentals. He later took me aside and thanked me for my suggestion and asked me if he could use the tip I had given him.) It was something that my Dad had taught me: "Aim small, hit small - Aim big, hit nothing". Meaning: Don't aim at the target - aim at a small part of the target and you're likely to hit very close to that point. (If all of the other fundamentals are sound - this can take a lifetime and some people never get it)

   For readers who live outside the USA: I know that there are those who question us Americans and our love of guns. It's part of our heritage. Our history is rife with stories of our ancestors - the pioneers who tamed the wilderness with a rifle in one hand and a plow in the other. Stories of our "Wild West" and the "Gunfight at the OK Corral" are mostly overblown and gunfights were rare. The OK Corral gunfight happened but has mostly been romanticized through books and films.

   Our founding fathers saw the need of/for the armed citizen in order to maintain balance with our government and to make it all but impossible for a foreign army to invade our country. This was stated in the second amendment of the US Constitution - Right below the first amendment which guarantees freedom of speech and expression. The second amendment supports the first.

   In states where citizens have the right to carry concealed weapons, crime statistics all indicate a downward trend. When criminals don't know which of their intended victims are armed, they tend to look elsewhere. "An armed society is a polite society". Robert A. Heinlein

   I have firearms that I have inherited from my father and those that I have purchased for myself. Many of those that I have inherited, I don't fire. They are keepsakes - but I still have ammunition for them all, just in case... I have a handgun and a rifle that are new and unfired. Why? I just haven't gotten around to it - yet. Their day will come. Soon.

   From The Geezer: If you don't like guns, that's fine. Don't criticize and demonize those of us who do. If you ever need to be protected, call your neighbor. Statistics say that he or she will have a firearm in their home and will know how to use it.

2 comments:

  1. I think your on point with this one geezer! Do we have problems from guns being in the crook's hands? Sure but it's a trade off - we can be citizens or subjects. I choose to be a citizen!

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  2. dad helped me with my shooting and gave me a valuable tip (since I have severe essential tremor I shake a lot!), he had me deliberately move my gun in a figure 8 with the cross over on the point I want to hit. Since I am moving I don't worry about moving and I can usually hit what I'm aiming for (or at least get close enough). Dang, that man could shoot! Thank you Dad! He also taught us that it's people that misuse the the guns, not the guns. If you are responsible, no problem.
    Le Petite Crone

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