Damn Right I'm A Hoplophile
Massachusetts has some of the most draconian gun laws of any state in the country. This is largely due to the fascistic influence of Senator Edward "Ted" Kennedy. This bloated, alcoholic demagogue is responsible for banning almost everything fun, from fireworks to tattoos, to nunchucks, to most edged weapons and even paintball guns. Massachusetts is often jokingly referred to as "The Peoples' Democratic Republic Of Massachusetts" and when I relocated to Rhode Island in 1992 I was refreshed to see that RI had very fair, sound, and well enforced gun laws. Sadly, there is currently a movement in RI to try and adopt the same type of gun laws that people like John Kerry, Ted Kennedy, Adolf Hitler and Mao Tse Tung would approve of. This includes registration of ALL guns (currently RI only makes you register handguns), the banning of high capacity magazines, limiting you to one gun purchase a month, and the ever popular, ineffective, and ghastly unconstitutional assault weapons ban.
Since I was knee high to a grasshopper I've been around firearms. It wasn't uncommon for me to go to my grandfather's house and see one of his hunting rifles or shotguns being taken apart and cleaned on the kitchen table. By the time I was a wee lad of ten I was shooting with my father on a regular basis. Being that my grandfather grew up during the depression and my father grew up dirt poor I was taught how to be self sufficient at a very young age. Being self sufficient meant learning how to survive in the wilderness, how to make a fire with just about anything, and most importantly it included the safe handling and storage of firearms.
Even though I'm a native of New England, my family members on both sides were quite similar to the rednecks, hicks, and crackers of the Appalachians and the deep south. This used to be something that I was ashamed of, but as I've gotten older I have gradually grown to accept and even celebrate my white trash roots. For as trashy as my relatives were they could survive almost any hardship and make a day's worth of fun for us kids using only ordinary household items. You can have your expensive yuppie lifestyle if you want it. I'd never trade my cheap, trashy lifestyle for anything.
Despite my hick confession, there is definitely a misconception about gun owners that doesn't apply to me at all. You see, the anti gun lobby would like the public to believe that all gun owners are racist, paranoid, bible- thumping republican psychos who have nothing better to do than kill defenseless animals and act like tough guys because we're "packing". That is simply not the case. If the truth be told, guns actually prevent more violence than they cause. As author Dr. John Lott Jr. states "a woman without a gun is 2.5 times more likely to be injured than one with a weapon. A man brandishing a gun is 1.4 times less likely to get hurt than an unarmed man."
Gun ownership in the US is currently at an all time high, and right to carry states have increased to 38 from 10 in the past decade. As stated on an NRA support site, "Violent crime has declined while many "gun control" laws have been eliminated or made less restrictive. Many states have eliminated prohibitory or restrictive carry laws, in favor of Right-to-Carry laws. The federal Brady Act`s waiting period on handgun sales ended in 1998, in favor of the NRA-supported National Instant Check, and some states thereafter eliminated waiting periods, purchase permit requirements, or other laws delaying gun sales. The federal "assault weapon" ban expired in 2004. All states now have hunter protection laws, 46 have range protection laws, 46 prohibit local jurisdictions from imposing gun laws more restrictive than state law, 44 protect the right to arms in their constitutions, and 33 prohibit frivolous lawsuits against the firearm industry." One only has to look at the statistics to realize that excessive gun restrictions really have no impact on crimes committed by criminals who use firearms.
In the spring of 1994 I purchased my first firearm. Because I was used to Massachusetts' extremely restrictive gun laws, I assumed that I'd have to be fingerprinted and have the gun registered. After speaking with the Attorney General's office I was pleased to find out that no such laws existed here in the Ocean State. Soon after I purchased the rifle I bought an additional $200 worth of accessories and ammunition. I was now ready to rock 'n' roll.
At the time there were a few acres of undeveloped land in northern RI where you could fire your guns with reckless abandon, so my girlfriend and I decided to christen my new toy one afternoon. I was immediately impressed by how accurate the rifle was, and how little recoil I felt. My girlfriend (who was a little squeamish about firing the gun at first) was also impressed by how much fun the gun was to shoot, and she quickly got the hang of the rifle. The bottles, cans, and various curios that we were shooting at didn't stand a chance against our awesome firepower!
After about 90 minutes of shooting we returned home and fell into the sack almost immediately. In our post coital embrace, my sweetie whispered "Maybe we should go shooting more often" as we both dozed off with huge smiles on our faces. Unfortunately, this woman would later on reveal herself to be Satan's concubine, but at the time her statement was strangely poetic. It was at this point that I decided that anyone tyrannical enough to try and deprive me of these magical moments could only be one thing; my mortal enemy.
You see, a primeval transformation tends to occur in people when they use firearms, and with myself I'm often five times happier and fifty times hornier after I've blown off a few rounds at the range. As my friend Forrest said on the ride home the last time we went shooting "Jeez Aaron, you haven't talked about how much you hate everybody this entire ride home." Amen to that. Recreational shooting makes me happy, and I happen to be a law abiding citizen. Is there anything wrong with that? I implore all gun control supporters to rethink their position on guns, especially if they've never fired one. How can you rally against something you know nothing about?
It is my opinion that if you're against guns, you're against freedom. Period. Civilian firearm ownership is what truly sets America apart from other less progressive nations in this world, and is truly the REAL "homeland security". As the wise old maxims states; "Know guns, Know peace and safety. No guns, no peace nor safety."