It goes without saying. Not all gun owners are right-leaning, Trump-voting, old fat white guys. Take, for example, Sarah Cade, the subject of a profile today in the Minnesota Star Tribune.
Cade is young, biracial and passionately liberal. She’s also become a self-described gun nut and a staunch defender of gun ownership.
But she wants to be nice about it.
“I have a talent for disagreeing with people without being a jerk about it,” she said. “I don’t like hostility in any of my interactions. I’m very nonconfrontational.”
Which helps. Gun rights supporters have had just about enough of being called racist, Nazis with blood on their hands who value their firearms more than children’s lives.
In many ways, she defies the stereotype of a Second Amendment crusader.
She has empathy for people who are scared by AR-15 rifles, one of which she owns.
“I get why people are afraid of them. Like, I understand that. I get that it’s scary for people to think that other people have the capacity to cause harm,” she said.
And she understands just how negatively gun owners are often viewed. “There’s a perception that gun owners don’t care,” she said, “and that could not be farther from the truth.”
But Cade believes that ideas about gun control should be judged on their merits, not where they fall along political lines. She hopes to persuade, not just win arguments. And she doesn’t lecture opponents about the origins of the Second Amendment or wrangle over whether semi-automatic weapons should be called assault rifles.
“It’s not an assault rifle until you assault someone with it,” she said, adding, “I don’t approve of anyone being mean about it, or rude, because that doesn’t help anyone.”
And while you may not always realize it — it’s too easy to think you’re always dealing with like-minded people here in a pro-gun bubble — there are lots of other left-leaning gun owners like Cade out there. Plenty of whom read TTAG. Check out our ‘I am a gun owner’ photo collection from a few years ago if you doubt that.
With well over 100 million people who own firearms in this country, it only makes sense that, despite their depiction in the media, gun owners actually come in all shapes, colors, sizes and political predilections. And that’s a very good thing for everyone who values the right to keep and bear arms. The more of us there are on every point along the political spectrum, the safer our gun rights.