Since my state’s legislature just passed a bill to arm teachers in public schools, I’ve been thinking about gun control a lot lately (as a citizen, parent, and educator).
The political right-wing in the U.S. would have us believe that all pro-gun control liberals: a) fear guns and b) don’t understand guns.
Now, even leaving aside the thousands (or more) of veterans and current military who favor gun control, this is blatantly false. I’ll use myself as the case study in this case, since I can’t speak for the backgrounds of others.
I favor gun control and am strongly against arming teachers (or school administrators).
I have no fear of guns.
I understand them.
I’ve done target shooting before. It came easily to me. So easily that I got bored with it. Admittedly, this was with rifles and muskets, so rifled and smooth bore, not handguns (never used one, no real interest). Iron sights only, none of these fancy scopes. Roughly 100-200 feet to targets. Let’s say that were I stuck in the 18th or 19th century wilderness, I wouldn’t starve (might go hungry occasionally, but would not starve). Sure, my shooting’s probably atrophied a bit over the intervening years.
The point is, there was a time when I shot a fair bit. I understand guns and, at the time, could quickly compensate for an individual rifle’s quirks. I think they are fine in fiction, paintball, or Nerf dart form. But, I don’t like the real thing in reality. I have my reasons, and they are varied (addendum: a gun is not the only, or best, form of defense, should one need it).
I think the writers for Dean Devlin’s Leverage said it best:
Head Mook: “You said you don’t like guns.”
Eliot Spencer: “I don’t. Never said I couldn’t use ‘em.”