The sky is falling! Fire and brimstone is raining from the sky! We’ve lost the election and will have are guns taken from us! The end is nigh my friends, the end is nigh!
That’s seems to be the general attitude many gun owners are having after Tuesday’s election. Why are gun owners screaming about the end of gun rights? Because a Republican isn’t in the Oval Office and to many gun owners Republicans equal gun owners while Democrats equal gun grabbers. This attitude is pervasive throughout the gun community and, as Shelley Rae at Gun Nuts Media points out, it shouldn’t be this way:
This should not be a liberal versus conservative conversation. But it continues to be and that, I believe, is partially our failure as a community. We continue to attack and alienate target demographics that could benefit us, especially in regards to more liberal politicians who are interested in reducing our Second Amendment rights. Politicians play to their constituents, and if a liberal politicians were to realize that all the 20-something hipsters would be upset if their 9mm Makarovs were taken away it would be a major asset to our community.
What am I really getting at here? Generation Y. My people. The ones who are participating in Occupy Wallstreet marches and getting married to people of the same sex and have a bunch of tattoos along with their PhD. I’m not suggesting you have to like everything they do or all their political ideals, in fact I’m well-known among my peers for making stuck-up comments about individual responsibility, but this isn’t about that – this is about gun ownership and the Second Amendment.
One of the shortcomings of the gun community, in my opinion, is the relatively authoritarian nature of some the most vocal members. Many of these individuals spend a great deal of time talking about individual liberty only to turn around and demand compliance with their beliefs. Anybody who has been an active participant in the gun community and isn’t a clean-cut male Christian Republican has likely found themselves embroiled in arguments with some of the vocal members of the gun culture.
To quote George Carlin:
I don’t like ass kissers, flag wavers or team players. I like people who buck the system. Individualists. I often warn people: “Somewhere along the way, someone is going to tell you, ‘There is no “I” in team.’ What you should tell them is, ‘Maybe not. But there is an “I” in independence, individuality and integrity.’” Avoid teams at all cost. Keep your circle small. Never join a group that has a name. If they say, “We’re the So-and-Sos,” take a walk. And if, somehow, you must join, if it’s unavoidable, such as a union or a trade association, go ahead and join. But don’t participate; it will be your death. And if they tell you you’re not a team player, congratulate them on being observant.
As a general rule I prefer to be around, what most people would consider, weird people. Most of these people do not comply with the beliefs of the above mentioned. They usually don’t fit into binary categories such as Democrats and Republicans or Catholics and Protestants. These people blur the lines, buck trends, and sometimes set out to be as weird as possible. When I bring these people to the range or to a gun show it’s almost inevitable that one of the above mentioned will stroll up and start some kind of argument.
For the guys reading this post let me just say that you haven’t gotten the full curmudgeon gun owner experience until you’ve brought a girl with pink hair to the range or a girl with tattoos covering one of her arms. If there’s an above mentioned anywhere on that range you can guarantee that he’ll come up and start any kind of argument possible. Do you want some more fun? Bring a girl to a gun show, start a stopwatch when you enter the door, and stop it when the first guy mentions buying her a pink gun. If you want even more entertainment take her to a table, act entirely disinterest in the wares, have her look at the firearms, then see if the attendant addresses you or her. In my experience the attendant will address you nine times out of ten.
Fortunately there many people in the gun community who aren’t the above mentioned. I’m one of them and I’m guessing you’re one of them as well (since I’m pretty sure I’ve run off the above mentioned long ago when I started posting more about anarchism). We need to become more vocal and let it be known that the above mentioned are not the only people in the community. Expanding our ranks is critical if we want to keep the community going after all of the above mentioned have died off. This means attracting everybody including Christians, Muslims, pagans, atheists, men, women, transgender, conservatives, liberals, libertarians, communists, anarchists, people with brown hair, people with pink hair, people covered in tattoos, and people haven’t modified their body. One of the most effective things the “left” has done is be very inclusive of people with different backgrounds. It’s a strategy the gun community should adopt post haste.