“Funny things start going through your head when you and your five-year-old daughter are suddenly surrounded by a dozen people wielding high-powered weaponry,” houstonpress.com blogger Jef Rouner writes. A dozen? I count four. Anyway, “Mostly, you know, expletives and panic, but also an agonizing moment of loss where you are suddenly trying to distill decades of complicated gun nuttery to a child that is still convinced Doctor Who is real.” A [presumably] unsuspecting Mr. Rouner had driven his daughter into the midst of the Open Carry Texas Brazoria County Monthly Education Walk. And they survived! A much-relieved Rouner had this to say about that . . .
“It’s not a parade, Heart,” I told my daughter, my hands gripping the steering wheel hard while vision of accidental gun shot wounds from my wife’s nursing textbooks played out in my head. “It’s a demonstration. A protest. A gathering of people to express a political opinion.” . . .
“What for?” she asked.
“They think that we need guns everywhere,” I said. “Lots and lots of guns.” I have never discussed firearms with her. There are none in my house. I have a rich tradition of alcoholism and suicide on both sides of my family and I suck at hiding things. There is simply no scenario where my home is safer with a gun in it.
“Why?” she asked.
“Because they think it will make them safer,” I replied. From behind me I heard her take a deep breath.
“No it’s not!” she yelled. “They’re going to do something stupid and die! They’re going to kill people. Look at that boy! Even their children are going to kill people! Who does that? Come on!”
Indoctrination much? Of course, Mr. Rouner reckons out of the mouth of babes – his babe – come civilian disarmament pearls. The swine. Or as we say in Texas, the feral hog (no intimation of pest control intended).
Despite living in Texas my whole life this was my first encounter with open carry activists, and while I freely admit they did nothing at all to me or anyone else I saw the sheer reckless bravado that comes from the movement never ceases to amaze me. The disregard for any kind of misinterpretation of their acts that could lead to something truly horrible happening is very real and apparently of minor importance to these people. I’m glad that a kindergartener (who by the way has already gone through school lockdown drills in case of an active shooter) can see that walking around armed is asking for trouble.
I mean, it’s not like some of these people don’t snap and do great harm sometimes.
And I do not now, nor will I ever, understand why the Second Amendment should mean that I have to drive my family through essentially a militia on a Sunday afternoon in a safe neighborhood simply so a few Texans can live-action roleplay with live ammo. The kid is right. It’s just stupid.
The kid is wrong. An open carry demo is an effective way to educate Americans about their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. A real gun carried by a real American – who does so peacefully and respectfully – beats a pro-gun rant any day.
Mr. Rouner missed a teachable moment; he could have explained the importance of the Second Amendment to his child. Then again, he doesn’t understand the importance of the Second Amendment. If only he’d parked his car, stepped out and discussed his [mis]apprehensions with the open carry demonstrators. Unfortunately, Rouner lacked he courage of his convictions. Literally.