Reader Aaron writes:
I figured maybe you could use some perspective from an ever-so-rare gay conservative such as myself. I’ve been following and actively wanting to get more and more engaged with the whole gun control and pro-gun debate in a much greater capacity, but at the same time there are instances where I just can’t come to terms with the Left-Right of it all. I’ve owned firearms all my life.. And really, that’s only because I’ve had a distinct interest in classic arms. That interest evolved into handguns, and eventually competitive shooting and all that good, fun stuff that most sporting chaps enjoy. This whole time though, being openly gay has never been an issue til right after Newtown . . .
Suddenly, all my gay friends were ranting and raving about gun control and saying I’m not gay enough for supporting and owning firearms and that I should be setting the example for the rest of the country and be a perfect example of a ‘reformed’ gay man. I’ve never even heard of that. ‘Reformed’ gay man. It’s rather absurd to think that, despite being with my partner for roughly 7 years (with some time in between), that I’m not gay enough for the rest of the community as a whole because I have a very large interest in firearms and support my gun rights and my right to self defense.
I see the Constitution for what it is, and while there are some pieces of it that I don’t agree with, I understand that it all boils down to a moral issue that has nothing to do with the Constitution. I suppose being interested in the history of the world and proud to be an American, despite being part of a very disliked subculture has really affected my view on everything. And while I wish others would be more accepting of my homosexual side, it has never really been an issue with most people I’ve known.
Regardless, what I’m getting to is this: in my community, we are largely regarded as leftists who only vote Democrat. Admittedly, I have too. I wanted to be recognized and have my partnership recognized as legitimate. I wanted my partner to be able to share my bank account with me or be at my side if I am injured and in the hospital.
I wanted to be an equal person, yet at the same time I didn’t want to be very vocal about it. I didn’t want to be somehow elevated above the rest of the country for being gay, somehow being the ‘better’ and more ‘tolerant’ individual that the mainstream media has portrayed. And this is what bothers me about being a gay firearm owner.
I’m beginning to be elevated above the rest of gun owners because I am gay and refuse to toe the standard party line. More and more people are coming out of the woodwork, asking me if I’m going against my own party simply because I support the 2A, and accusing me of holding my guns more closely than I do my partner. This has lead me to believe that, as with all issues, this is simply becoming part of being gay, not just a gun owner.
It’s becoming more and more polarizing to boot. That somehow my opinion of gun control matters more than, say, Joe Whiteguy’s, because of my sexual orientation. And that because I speak out and against gun control that I’m somehow, ‘not gay enough.’ Ultimately, this leads me to believe in one thing.. The thing that I’ve been pondering for a long time, after getting all of my reactions from both sides of the playing field.
Are gays somehow the key to turning public opinion where guns are concerned? I’ve been curious about this for a long time. At my job, there are a number of people who have come to me, asking (despite there being five other employees who are gun owners) if they can go shooting with me. To teach them how to handle a firearm, whether it’s a handgun or a rifle. I always agree, and I’ve gotten plenty of my co-workers and even one very hoplophobic person to trust me and pick up my CZ 75 and have a go at it. At the end of the day they were having a blast with my AR15 and all my other “evil” firearms.
Despite all of this, I began to realise they were coming to me to teach them about firearms and help them get over their fear simply because I’m gay. I always ask, “Why didn’t you ask suchandsuch? He has firearms too.” And I always get the answer, “Well, I don’t know. You’re nicer and I trust you alot more with firearms than him.” To which I ask, “Oh, it’s because I’m gay, isn’t it?” with a little smirk and a playful laugh. And I always get the same answer, “Well, you seem more responsible because you’re gay.” That always floors me. Every time. It seems to me it always was about being gay, and never about the guns.
So, with all that said, is it in the pro-gun community’s interests to really start supporting the LGBT side? To prop them up and use their position to promote our side further? Is that something the NRA would see as acceptable? Would it even be acceptable to the gun community as a whole? I don’t know the answers, but I thought I’d share this with you as you guys seem to be reasonable. And you’re also my favorite gun-blog thingy. Figured I could give you guys my feelings on it, really.