Skip to comments.Why I gave up my guns (NY bred metrosexual loses his nerve, throws in the towel on gun ownership)
Posted on 01/12/2013 2:06:42 PM PST by DogByte6RER
(1918 Bolshevik Poster by Alexander Apsit reads "Citizens, hand over your weapons!")
Why I gave up my guns
A former firearm enthusiast explains his personal epiphany
Late one night in the spring of 2008, I was jolted awake by the sound of yet another a burglar trying to break into my Atlanta home. Wed already had a series of scary close calls, but this time I was ready: I had staged my shotgun and a box of shells in a broom closet right by the back door, next to the umbrellas.
While my girlfriend called the police, I ran into the kitchen and looked out the window just in time to see a human form rush to hide in the shadows behind my car. I grabbed the gun and fumbled for the ammunition in the half-light, spilling most on the ground, but finally found one cartridge I was able to slide into the chamber.
I worked the action furiously, once, twice, and again, realizing dimly as I did that in doing so I was actually ejecting the shells, unspent, and basically unloading the weapon. But the unmistakable sound of the pump carried to the backyard, and, in a flash, the prowler was gone a blur of raggedy jeans and tattered flannel sliding across the hood of my car and vaulting over the picket fence into the night.
I couldnt make out his face or tell if he was armed. The next moment I was in the bathroom, vomiting hot puke all over the floor and toilet, water from the bowl splashing my face and eyes. Later, my girlfriend told me I had made her feel safe, protected. I just felt ill.
Im a New Yorker born-and-bred, and unlike the just under half of all Americans who keep guns in their homes, I didnt grow up with firearms. But when I moved first out West, and then to the South, I got into guns big-time. Ive owned a dozen guns over the years, including a Bushmaster AR-15, and have fired scores more. Ive put in countless hours at the range, in the woods, and at gun shows.
Ive made good friends on the range, love shooting skeet, and appreciate how integrally guns figure into the rural professions and outdoor pastimes of many Americans. I understand, also, why so many Americans dont just like their guns but love them. From the robust kick of firing a revolver to the emphatic, mechanical bursts of shouldering an assault rifle on full auto, I have come to know the rhythm of guns, have felt the addictive thrill of their multi-sensory intensity.
But on that night in 2008, I learned something else. I learned how guns relate to fear, and not just the fear my gun inspired in the would-be-burglar. Owning guns had given me a sense of security, but all that was a fantasy that imploded in a few terrifying seconds.
Sure, I had frightened away an intruder, defended my castle. But I could have just as easily been killed by him or accidentally shot myself or my partner. Hundreds of hours of range time didnt mean anything in the confusion of the moment.
The ease with which I had bought my guns, fired them recreationally, and even stoically contemplated the possibility of defending me and mine with lethal force suddenly seemed foolish.
In fact, it was almost as if my very closeness to guns had blinded me to the real possibility that they might lead me to actually killing another human being.
Whether we like it or not, in todays America, we are all close to guns. In a nation with nearly 300 million privately owned firearms, it would be hard not be. But just because we are saturated with weapons does not make our relationship with them mature or reality-based.
Instead, just the opposite is the case: The American vision of gun ownership is dominated by fantasy, and the public discourse around guns is frequently hijacked by a kind of fantasy logic.
Only in fantasy does keeping a gun in the home make you safer; the statistical reality is just the opposite. Only in fantasy is the possibility of even minimal gun regulation a threat to take away all the guns. And only in fantasy can arming teachers and abolishing gun-free zones be seen as a reasonable response to gun violence for only in fantasy does throwing more of a problem at a problem equal a solution.
After Newtown, the predictable chorus of if-only-I-had-been-there-with-my-gun included an Oregon state representative, Dennis Richardson, who wrote to some of his constituents that, If I had been a teacher or the principal at the Sandy Hook Elementary School and if the school district did not preclude me from having access to a firearm . . . most of the murdered children would still be alive, and the gunman would still be dead, and not by suicide.
Perhaps. Or perhaps the good representative would have been shot dead without having a chance to draw his weapon. Or perhaps he would have been gunned down by confused first responders. Or perhaps Richardson would have taken the best aim he could while under stress, missed, and killed a child or two himself.
If trained NYPD cops can only manage to take down a single gunman by wounding nine bystanders in the process, as recently happened outside the Empire State Building, it seems unlikely to expect much better from the 63-year-old Richardson.
All of these scenarios are equally hypothetical, but that Richardson should offer macho posturing in lieu of constructive reflection speaks as much to what Gov. Cuomo has rightly termed a national madness as it does to that madness allure. If only the minimal difference between the life and death of 20 children, the only bulwark needed against tragedy, was some decrepit politician playing Dirty Harry.
I had thought Id be ready to play that role, too. I had my shotgun at the ready that spring night because there had been three break-in attempts on our house in as many months, the last in the early afternoon while my girlfriend was home. I dont think they realized she was there the car wasnt in the driveway and when they tried to kick down the door, already damaged by someone with a crowbar a couple weeks prior, she called the cops, then me.
I got there before they did and found her hiding in the bathtub, the front door in splinters around the hinges and a couple of shotgun shells lying on the porch. Presumably, whoever tried to break in had dropped the ammo while attempting to get inside.
I called my landlords to give notice and took my gun out of its case, removed the trigger lock and put it in that closet. The feeling of safety this gesture gave me was quite real.
The desire to feel secure is understandable, but our fantasies are killing us. America averages 34 gun homicides a day.
For an organization that blames Americas gun crisis on violent movies, the NRA in particular seems deeply committed to cultivating the notion that we can all be the stars of our own personal action flicks.
I got my opportunity to play hero. Not in fantasy, but in real life, the chance to flex my finger with three pounds of pressure and shoot another human being dead in my driveway because he wanted to steal my TV. Right after we moved, I sold all my guns. I never wanted to put myself in that position again.
Enough is enough. In 2008, Japan, which maintains strict gun regulations, saw 11 gun homicides; in that same year, America had over 12,000. This is the world in which we live, which we have made for ourselves, and which understandably inspires fear.
The choice before us now is either to double down on that fear and make the situation worse by arming ourselves further, or to break the chains of fantasy altogether. Blithely wielding the power to kill does not make you heroic, and it will not make you safe. We are not free if we choose to continue living in fantasy, and we are not brave if we choose to continue living in fear.
Blanchfield is a Ph.D. candidate and Woodruff Scholar in comparative literature at Emory University in Atlanta.
Wow, what a femenized weenie.
For someone who claims to have a Ph.D, he sure doesn’t seem very bright.
Generally I encourage people to own firearms. The author is a good example of someone who should not own any type of weapon.
I can guarantee that not everyone in his situation will react the same as he did. I know that for a fact.
He got frightened because he may have had to shoot someone to protect himself and his girlfriend.
I am sure had the gun been in the hands of a criminal and he was facing it the criminal would have had no such fears.
So he got rid of his guns, and now he is helpless for if the gun scared him a knife would probably make him crap his pants.This guy is a potential victim, I hope the burglars never find out where he lives, if they do they will clean him out fast.
I had the same thought, but would have expressed it differently, and had my post pulled.
This story is fiction, pure made up bovine excrement. Then the sissy boy did say he was born and raised in New York, enough said.
This story is fiction, pure made up bovine excrement. Then the sissy boy did say he was born and raised in New York, enough said.
Yup, sure thing, this clown said he spent many hours at the range.
I'm laughing at this and if any of it were true, I'd be laughing harder.
Stick to your guns—no matter what!
by Matt Bracken
If they come to take away your guns by force, they have declared war on the Constitution, and on you. At that point, war is joined, just as it was during another famous gun confiscation... raid on April 19, 1775.
If a firearm was legal in 2012, under the 2nd Amendment its still legal in 2013 and it will be legal forever, no matter what so-called “executive orders” are handed down or new “laws” are passed by a panicking Congress. Those who say otherwise are liars and traitors and oath breakers and domestic enemies.
Every survivor of every genocide says the same thing: when they come to take your guns, shoot them! Make them take them, and their system of repression will be overwhelmed, because they dont have millions of jack-booted thugs ready to do armed battles all over the country.
If you give up your arms, you are placing your entire trust in the permanent future benevolence of the U.S. government. This trust is invariably fatal: ask the American Indians about those treaties that were guaranteed forever.
History is clear, with numerous examples, of the danger of gun registration and gun control. The German gun registration laws were enacted duuring the 1920s Weimar Republic, years before Hitler came to power. German gun registration was mandated in the name of “public safety.” Note that phrase well. Im sure today’s liberal utopians would agree that they were “common sense” and “reasonable” gun control laws. Don’t we all want “public safety?”
Then Hitler rose to power, and used the gun registration lists to first disarm the Jews, and then to force them into starving, overcrowded ghettos, and finally into mass graves and gas chambers. The Nazi genocide of the Jews was enabled by those “common sense” German gun registration lists.
Millions of Polish Jews were rounded up by German military police battallions. The German military police only needed a 1-10 ratio to their victims. A mere 100 German military police, (4-Fs in their forties, bottom of the barrel conscripts, not rabid SS), would round up and murder a town of a thousand Jews over the course of one day.
The Germans would force them to sit tightly packed together on town plazas or sporting fields under the watch of only a handful of armed guards. The Germans would then march groups of twenty or thirty at a time at gunpoint into the woods for point-blank executions. A 1-10 ratio means the military police were not worried at all about meeting resistance. The victims were all previously disarmed.
During the Armenian Genocide from 1915-23, two million Christian Turks were exterminated by being marched at gun point into burning deserts with no food or water. The Turkish gun registration laws were enacted in 1911, in the name of “public safety.” The genocide began a few years later, after the Armenians’ firearms were confiscated.
Entire divisions of Russian troops hiked home from WW1 in 1917/18, carrying their rifles and swords and other sidearms. Very early on, Lenin decreed that “public safety” required they all be turned in, under penalty of death. And so the Russian war veterans were disarmedbut not the Communist Party members. Then came the Soviet purges, the Great Terror, the Gulags, and tens of millions of disarmed Russians were murdered.
Im sorry, but I do NOT trust that our federal government wont turn as brutally tyrannical as the old USSR at some point in the future, perhaps after an economic crash or other major crisis. The Obama regime already perceives that we “Bitter Clingers” are “reactionaries” who are not only standing in the way of social progress, we are actively blocking it.
That makes us pure Evil, since their plan for a socialist utopia is pure Good. And that means they will ultimately come to feel totally justified in seeking a “final solution to the Bitter Clinger problem,” in the same way that the Turks, Soviets and Nazis did. Can anyone guarantee Americans that tyranny will never visit our shores?
If the socialists in power are scapegoating us as national villains now, what will they do when they have no reason to fear us whatsoever? Did the Turks, Soviets or Nazis treat their despised minorities better, or worse, after disarming them? Think!
And once a despots enemies (thats us) are disarmed and helpless...the temptation grows to simply do away with them. Obama mentor and ghost-autobiographer, the Weather Underground bomber Bill Ayers, stated that they would need to murder ten percent of the American population to achieve their socialist nirvana. Thirty million bitter clingers. Guess who that is?
Don’t relearn this bitter lesson the hard way. Learn from history’s many examples. As it was for the Turkish Armenians, German Jews, Russian Kulaks, Chinese, Ugandans, Guatemalens, Cambodians, Cubans, Rwandans, and on and on, historys lesson is crystal clear:
Stick to your guns—no matter what!
“And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling with terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand? After all, you knew ahead of time that those bluecaps were out at night for no good purpose. And you could be sure ahead of time that youd be cracking the skull of a cutthroat. Or what about the Black Maria sitting out there on the street with one lonely chauffeur what if it had been driven off or its tires spiked. The Organs would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and transport and, notwithstanding all of Stalins thirst, the cursed machine would have ground to a halt!”
~~Alexander SolzhenitsynSee More
Look at his story...
I grabbed the gun and fumbled for the ammunition in the half-light, spilling most on the ground, but finally found one cartridge I was able to slide into the chamber. I worked the action furiously, once, twice, and again, realizing dimly as I did that in doing so I was actually ejecting the shells, unspent, and basically unloading the weapon. But the unmistakable sound of the pump carried to the backyard, and, in a flash, the prowler was gone
He manages to load a single shell and then ejects it? He'd have to hold down the bolt release to do that. Then he says "shells" after saying he only was able to find one. Finally, he makes the claim that the bad guy was scared off by the sound of the gun being pumped. How many times have we heard that one? I think this guy is as much a gun owner as the self-cutting lesbian chick was the victim of a "hate crime".
The only part of this story I believe......when scared this genetic male puts his head in a toilet.
My thoughts, as well.
Just a propaganda piece for the readers of the NY Daily News, who will eagerly lap it up.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.