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Susan isn’t her real name and she isn’t your typical gun owner. She was born into a Republican, Christian, but also very anti-gun, family 35 years ago and spent much of her early adulthood in small, conservative towns. She identifies herself as Lesbian, African-American and vegetarian, which made life in small towns a bit stressful. She now lives in a large city where tolerance and acceptance are the norm . . .

As we talk, she mentions that her job involves interviewing people. Some sort of social work apparently, but I don’t inquire further to protect her privacy. Many of the people she meets at work, as well as the folks in her personal life, have a very negative view of guns and gun owners. “There is definitely some prejudice. We have taught people to be terrified of the very idea of a gun, so they tend to have a very illogical, emotional response to guns.” That’s why she keeps her gun ownership quiet.

Due to her upbringing, Susan had a deep seated fear of guns, too, but concern for her own safety eventually prompted her to consider gun ownership. “The majority of women I know have been sexually assaulted,” she states calmly. “I think that right there is enough for women to want to become comfortable with firearms and even arm themselves.”

Being a minority in multiple ways made me think more about protection issues, but I was still hesitant to get a gun for a long time. When I lived out in the woods, I was surrounded by people with guns and thought it might be smart to stop being afraid of them. So that was what prompted me to want to learn to fire a gun, just to remove that sense of terror… and it worked, it definitely worked.”

About five years ago, her partner’s father taught her to shoot a pistol on his rural property and gave her the nine-shot .22 rimfire H&R 929 revolver she uses now for home defense. She also has three pellet guns in .177 caliber.

Susan owns an old house in a less affluent, high crime, section of the city. She could tell the home had been broken into at least once when she first inspected it. She rents rooms to three women and she sounds frustrated by their lack of simple security sense like keeping doors locked and not inviting untrustworthy people into the house. One woman had a male visitor who walked in on another tenant uninvited, causing considerable consternation. Susan reported this to the police but was informed that they could do nothing until the man actually stole something or hurt someone.

Politically, Susan describes herself as Libertarian, but can’t recall ever voting for a Libertarian candidate. She usually just votes for whoever seems like the best candidate. “I feel that the two party system… isn’t working,” she says. “I’m not a member of the NRA, I have a little hesitancy joining large organizations… which are influenced by corporate money.” She has not looked into GOA or SAF.

What does she think of the current push for more gun control? “I think that it’s very reactionary… I understand the concerns around shootings, those are serious issues, but at the same time I don’t think that trying to get rid of guns is ultimately the answer. I think we have the right to bear arms as a form of protection, also from any government that may come along and decide to mistreat their citizens. It gives me pause whenever the government wants to reduce access to guns, because they are not reducing their own access.”

Susan found the local Pink Pistols chapter by searching online for gays and guns. She went shooting with them once and when her 40 year old H&R revolver stopped working, a Pink Pistols member repaired it for free. She’d like to have something with more stopping power. “I’d love to have a 9 millimeter, but there is the economic reality of purchasing one. And the cost of ammo is astronomical.” She speculates that the current ammunition shortage might be a deliberate way of keeping “economically challenged” people from owning guns.

What would she like to say to readers of TTAG? “People who own guns are not necessarily who you’d expect. They can have very liberal views, they can be vegetarian or vegan and they may not be part of the gun culture.”

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    • +1.
      Respect for overcoming your fear, Susan, and
      Kudos to you for “coming out” …as a gun owner.

      I would guess there are other “non-traditional” gun owners and others who are considering same, who might feel personally validated by your common sense approach and example.

      Welcome to all.

  1. There’s two lessons here: First, that someone who identifies with three (at least) typically left-leaning minorities or groups still understands the RKBA. Second, if you eliminate those narrowing classifiers (lesbian, African American, vegetarian), and just make it “a random non-gender-specific person,” her comments could probably come from about 75% of the people in this country.

    • In my experience, minorities regardless of the fallacy of left/right politics tend toward personal liberties regardless of the party they vote. B/L/G/TG, even more usual to find they very much like being able to defend themselves. Makes sense, really.

      Entirely agreed on your second point! I’ve met so many people who own, for example, a handgun and a rifle or shotgun with the simple reason being self defense.

      • And you know what? IT’S NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS, so mind your own, if you’ve got any.

        • You mind your business if you’ve got any. I’ll comment as I choose. Go to your mommy and whine.

        • But what’s it matter really. Say she voted for him. Maybe she was bamboozled. Maybe not. That shouldn’t be of anyone’s concern @ Aharon

    • I know some gun owners that did… They didnt know him (mostly people not from Illinois) and truly believed him when he said he wasnt going to take your guns away.

      You dont get votes in Ohio talking about gun bans.

      • As I can tell from my email replies, Sherrod Brown would still very much support a gun ban. I’ll be trying my best to get rid of him as soon as I can by replacing him with a Senator who respects my rights.

      • 2 minutes of Internet research when he first came on the scene showed me he never supported guns or gun ownership. His votes were pretty clear on what he would be like as president. I heard him say he wasn’t coming after our guns. I also saw him thinking the word ‘yet’ at the end of that sentence.

      • Greetings from the future!

        I am Guznulb–that is my Muslim Slave name.

        Many of us had to take on Muslim Slave names after Great Leader Obama took away all of our guns in 2015 and then was elected King of The World in 2016.

        Unfortunately, our kids will grow up in a world where people are forced to be vegetarian, exercise, and live healthy lifestyles.

        Due to growing up this way our kids all became very slender–which as everyone knows makes them catch the gay.

        The world is every horrible thing we believed back then! After the federal goverment took over Texas and made everyone move to their closest Walmart–places that white people liked went out of business!

        Gone are Whole Foods, Chipolte, and Trader Joe’s.

        Here in the future the only way that we can get around is on artisan made tricycles. The problem is that you never know if the person trying to sell a tricycle really has one or is just being ironic.

        Oh yeah–we thought we had reached peak beard–we had not. Today the ironic beard has become even fuller because of people washing their beard in artisan asparagus-water and rubbing free-range avocado into their beard every night.

        Oh in some good news–LA actually fell off into the ocean finally. I mean not all of it, just rleverything west of the 5. Chino Hills is seeing mass migration as all of the people who used to live in Pacific Palisades now are displacing people of color and vying their homes for $300 a square foot.

    • It’s none of your business who she voted for. The point is, she understands, accepts, and embraces the RKBA. Isn’t that enough?

      • No, it’s not enough. You can’t lay claim to being in favor of gun rights while at the same time voting for people who want to take those rights away. That’s just plain insane.

        • To be fair, Ralph, it does seem like many people FULLY believed Obama’s statements that he would never come after guns or gun control and that it just wasn’t on his agenda. Remember the NRA was roundly derided for saying otherwise in the months leading up to His second election.

          Additionally, she may be pro-gun-rights but is likely not a single-issue voter. Maybe Obama wasn’t there for her on gun rights but she still felt like he was much better for her when weighing any number of other issues. She could have come up with 9 reasons to vote for him and 1 not to, and 1 reason to vote Romney and 9 not to. Who knows. Anyway… yeah… voting Obama didn’t necessarily mean somebody didn’t believe in gun rights.

          For the record, HELL NO I didn’t vote for him haha ;)… BUT… if I voted Romney, for instance, that most definitely is not proof that I agree with every one of his stances… just that he’s closer to where I am than the other guy was.

        • Ralph, do you know for a fact who she voted for? And can you tell us why it’s any of your beeswax?

          Be honest with us and yourself, and just flat say you don’t like her. I like honesty. I like honest people. BE ONE.

        • Ralph,

          I’m with you. How many articles did TTAG put forth that this administration would be anti-gun? How many comments did Ralph, RF, myself, and others make the BHO absolutely would restrict your access to hardware?

          I don’t dislike this women based upon her sexual orientation, food choices, or race. I simply question her pro-gun narrative if she votes for anti-gun pols. That’s pretty simple. I’m going to go out on a limb and say Ralph feels the same way.

        • I know some very conservative gay people who voted for Obama, just because he’s better on gay rights. Maybe if Republicans practiced what they preach about “freedom,” they’d have a shot at getting their votes.

        • BeninMA – I have to say I’m skeptical that you know an conservatives in your state.

        • Ralph, I’m so glad that you haven’t been brainwashed by the modern religious cults of political correctness and radical feminism.

        • If her vote is indistinguishable from the vote of a wingnut, WTF do I care if she has a gun?

        • Burke, I’m very pro-gay. I’m just even more anti-stupid, so you and I will never get along.

        • What a trite observation. Obama and the Democrats spent most of the two years before the election emphasizing how “nobody is coming for your guns”. It was a constant refrain.

          It’s easy to be a single issue voter if the candidates you’re voting for also happen to agree with 90% of everything else you believe in. It’s a lot harder when that single issue is the only point of agreement, and voting for that candidate means your other interests lose out.

        • You can totally lay such claim, if you had to vote that way because the only other option on the table would take a great many other rights away that you deeply care about.

        • MothaLova — Yes, conservatives do exist in MA! Although the conservative gay people I know are probably closer to what most people would consider libertarians.

          • Right, and libertarians have only about 50% overlap with conservatives because they support the Leftist social agenda. So you may know lots of libertarians, but I’m guessing you’ve met precious few conservatives.

        • MothaLova: You’d be wrong. Trust me, there are hardcore conservatives in MA, they just happen to have no political relevance whatsoever.

          • And these “hardcore conservatives” love same-sex marriage, and so much that they’re willing to vote for Obama in contravention of everything else they supposedly believe? Either you’re not talking to conservatives, or you’re misrepresenting their views. (And the death penalty is not generally considered a social issue. Try abortion, contraception, marriage, and other family matters.)

        • As for my libertarian gay friends, they don’t totally embrace the “liberal social agenda” — they’ll support the death penalty, for example. Not everyone falls in lockstep with one political group or another.

    • Seconded.

      At the risk of sounding insensitive (guilty as charged), I have little respect for someone who values their RKBA and will not vote accordingly. At the very least, she could have said that she voted for the current administration and regrets that decision. Sure, she can be a non-typical gun owner. Well, whoopty-do. If she lacks the conviction to vote accordingly, then I am not impressed.

      • Why is it so terrible to vote based on more than one issue? Also, let’s not forget that many Republicans have done terrible things to our freedoms, too. *cough*Patriot Act*cough*

        • Your vote is your right, but if your vote is indistinguishable from that of the gun grabbers, then I don’t consider that person to be a gun rights advocate. The voting habits of this nation is one of our greatest threats to the 2A.

          You are right that Republicans have sold out the 2A cause, but a vote for this administration is simply not a vote for gun rights. And I will oppose a Republican, Independent, or Democrat who campaigns against the 2A.

          For what it’s worth, I welcome Susan and her perspective. I just don’t welcome votes which infringe upon my freedom. Gay marriage and abortion will continue apace whether I vote for them or not. Civil unions in most states have the same rights as marriages anyways. And if she is a vegan, that leaves more filet mignon for me.

        • Or that, as a governor, Romney wasn’t exactly avidly pro-gun?
          Or that, for the duration of his first term, Obama did jackshit to attack the 2nd amendment (some of the others weren’t so lucky).

          • In his first term, Obama appointed two Justices to the Supreme Court who would like to gut the Second Amendment. I’d say he’s always done quite a lot to destroy gun rights.

    • So what?

      A lot of us outside Illinois had no idea how he’d turn out.

      I voted for him myself in ’08, for a couple reasons. I figured the first non-white president would set a useful precedent, that he actually had a chance and was better than the opposition.

      I couldn’t see giving the number two slot to a piece of number two who “thought” that Africa is a country, who couldn’t name the three countries in North America (us, us on decaf and the taco place) or recall for the camera anything salient about any of the first ten Ammendments. One ancient heartbeat (in a guy running for W’s third term, no less) missed, and POOF! Bad things. Very bad things.

      A lot of us are about multiple issues, sir, and few of us saw ths level of anti-rights continuing, let alone being extended.

      Anyway, it is what it is. He ain’t all bad, and it looks like his anti-2A agenda, while wrongheaded and dangerous, is also DOA.


      • it looks like his anti-2A agenda, while wrongheaded and dangerous, is also DOA.

        Not a chance. His anti-constitution campaign continues apace.

        • While I do agree that he’s still trying to subvert our rights (and trying my patience) in a number of ways, I believe that that portion of his agenda will fail utterly.

          That’s what I meant by DOA, at least in the 2A arena.

          Now, just so we don’t get Preadator drones with S.B.G. detectors over U.S. soil – likely another part of the Plan for a Better State, i.e. Plan B.S.

  2. I like this series of articles. Susan, welcome aboard. Hopefully you eventually feel comfortable enough for a 38 special revolver vs the 22lr.

  3. Welcome Susan! Just a suggestion, if you’re mainly focused on home defense, a shotgun would be a cheaper alternative to a 9mm, and the ammo is easier to find.

    • If she goes the shotgun route, make sure to follow all of Joe “Double Barrel” Biden’s advice:
      (1) Get a double barrel shotgun.
      (Maximize recoil and minimize ammunition capacity).
      (2) Stand out on your porch and fire lots of warning shots into the air.
      (Highly illegal everywhere in the U.S.)
      (3) Shoot through your door without actually identifying your target.
      (Illegal, unethical, and highly unsafe.)

      Disclaimer: for anyone who did not detect what I hoped was obvious sarcasm above, Biden’s advice sucks and will either get you dead or in prison.

      • A Remington 870 (assuming you aren’t pissed about them staying in Ilion), Ithaca 37 or Mossberg 500 loaded up with #4 shot wouldn’t be bad advice at all if Susan’s sole goal is defending the homestead. Even one of the cheaper Chinese clones like a Pardner Pump is fine. 20 gauge will do if the recoil of a 12 is a bit intimidating.

        My weirdo bolt-action Marlin 55 of all things was better than a side by side. I don’t care what Crazy Uncle Joe says, save that sh!t for birds and clays.

      • Well, where I live it’s perfectly legal to step outside and let off with just about anything.

  4. Welcome Susan. I look forward to the day when there’s no such thing as a “typical gun owner”, rights are rights and everyone should excercise them.

    • I couldn’t agree more with every single word here. Glad to have you Susan, and any of your friends, and anyone else, too.

  5. “The majority of women I know have been sexually assaulted”

    Really? The majority? Perhaps in high crime areas that may or not be true. BTW, define assault. It’s not a leer. Otherwise, no the majority of women in America have not been ‘victims’ of sexual assault or rape. Remember when the claim was that one in three then one in four college women are victimized sexually? That claim by the SGI aka The Sexual Grievance Industry has been thoroughly debunked numerous times. The numbers of women on campus that have been sexually attacked or raped is more like about one in two thousand. University women are very safe on campus with the men on campus. However, men are not so safe unfortunately because of the newest rules making it too easy to convict men with false rape allegations.

    This is an insightful piece by the Wall Street Journal (google it):
    Judith Grossman: A Mother, a Feminist, Aghast
    Unsubstantiated accusations against my son by a former girlfriend landed him before a nightmarish college tribunal.

    When you’re done with that, go visit the ‘Community of the Wrongly Accused’ founded by a defense attorney. It covers the national epidemic of false rape allegations. Men and boys are essentially guilty until proven innocent with today’s bias against males and the standards for innocence getting further emasculated all the time.

    • Not gonna get into the politics side of this, cause I don’t actually know this person.

      Aharon, she said she was a social worker. That means she would be working with people in bad places doing bad things.

      • utdmatt,

        She said the majority of women she knows in her life not distinguishing between her clients and others in her life. If she meant her clients then she should have stated it. Beyond that, there is a social norm to flock around a woman who cries rape to assume she is being 1) honest and 2) objective about her claim. many women’s minds are capable of coming to rationalize and believe as true their own imaginations and lies.

        • Why are you so hostile? It doesn’t sound unlikely that she could perhaps, possibly, somehow know a pretty large amount of people that have been sexually assaulted. There’s no need to jump down her throat for saying that.

        • >> She said the majority of women she knows in her life not distinguishing between her clients and others in her life. If she meant her clients then she should have stated it.

          Why should she have? Her clients are definitely women that she “knows in her life”, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if they actually make a majority. So her statement is perfectly accurate as given. If you choose to aggressively misinterpret it, it’s your own problem – and one not really different from pseudo-feminists who get offended at “non-gender-neutral” language or somesuch BS.

        • “There’s no need to jump down her throat for saying that.”

          Wrong Jason. There is the need.

        • int19h,

          Can you be an more absurd with your reasoning? Referring to people one knows in life is understood as a reference to personal not professional relations. I am objectively interpreting. You are behaving, assuming you are male, like a white-knight or mangina in trying to defend her absurd statement about rape.

          It would have been a more correct statement (though not necessarily a factual one) for her to state that most of her clients claim to have been raped. Whether they were or not is another matter.

        • Lighten up Aharon. You claim to be rational, so heres some blunt feedback.

          You are off-topic and while I support your 1A rights, and honor your intentions, as its obvious you are passionate about false rape and feminism,

          the simple fact is you are bordering on becoming a troll by hijacking threads on what appears to be a personal issue, repeatedly.

    • There was a time when false rape allegations were extremely rare, almost unheard of. Sad to say, that’s no longer the case.

      • It makes me very glad that I have constant video recording going on in my patrol car. It’s already made a BS accusation go away.

        • I’m glad that you have the video recorder in your car too. I’ve seen videos of women being interviewed in police stations making a false rape allegation (FRA) against an officer only to be later shown the video proving she lied. Prosecutors almost never prosecute or judges never punish a woman/girl for making a FRA unless it it against a police officer. Society doesn’t care how FRA can devastate men and destroy our lives.

          • Heck, half the country cheers them on, true or false! (Anyone remember Anita Hill? There are a lot more Anitas out there – millions of ’em.)

      • FRA’s are used by many women just as false allegations of sexual harassment in the business world are used to destroy or severely harm men’s careers.

    • Yep, thanks. I guarantee that’s a distortion of truth. CLUE: If you want us on your side, don’t lie. Don’t dissemble. Don’t twist the truth.

      I have no doubt Susan believes it’s so, but it hinges on her notion of what constitutes “sexual assault”. A rude comment may be an affront. It may be disturbing the peace. It may even be verbal assault. That’s probably what she’s referring to. WHO HASN’T been verbally assaulted? I wish I had a sawski for every time I’ve been verbally assaulted. But that’s not sexual assault, i.e., RAPE.

    • Sadly, I don’t think her claim that the majority of women she knows have been sexually assaulted is that outlandish. The majority of women I know have either been victim or at least been a target of sexual abuse/assault. I don’t think it’s a definition issue either. If you are threatened or assaulted physically or verbally because someone is thinking with their genitals (male or female flavor) then that’s sexual assault.


      • The price of sexual “liberation.” When anything goes, well, anything goes. And women will have more to worry about than men, too, in just about every way.

        • I’m for liberation. Liberation is freedom. A woman has the right to express whatever she wants however she wants. That’s her prerogative. If some guy can’t witness her freedom and expression of herself without controlling his own weakness of will or lack of ability to “leave people alone”, then that’s HIS problem… NOT society’s problem. If a woman’s liberty makes it harder for you to exert will over yourself, that’s on you bud, not her.

          • Television, magazines, schools and colleges, music, advertising, etc. all encourage women to behave like prostitutes and encourage men to treat them like prostitutes – there to serve our temporary pleasure – and then we’re surprised when men start acting more and more violently toward them when they don’t get their way. You can call it “liberation,” but calling it doesn’t make it so.

            50 years ago, when most men and women married and raised kids together instead of fooling around from age 20-39 (maybe having kids out of wedlock, maybe having abortions, but not so inclined to get married and take care of each other), women were much more respected, children were better protected, and these sorts of assaults, against anyone – man, woman, child, were much, much less common.

        • Complaining that “society made me sexually assault a girl” is like complaining “society made me a criminal”. Boo Hoo. How about some independent thought. How about a little spine. How about personal responsibility?

          Also, it’s a settled fact that the fairytale of the “good old days” is not at all accurate to the reality of the “good old days”.

        • People who “say that” are historians and sociologists and cultural anthropologists who use real research methods to prove their hypothesis. These methods exist because common sense is usually neither common or sensible.

          It is interesting that this book is widely regarded to be inconsistent with real research on this matter and is criticized for not citing any primary source materials on having any bibliography. More of a philosophical essay on values and morals from a particular point of view than social science. A persuasion piece rather than a proof piece.

          • Nonsense. You use “widely regarded” the way the New York Times does: as a euphemism for the opinions of Leftists. Of course the Left doesn’t like her work. That doesn’t mean she’s wrong. In fact, it’s rather likely that it means she’s right.

            I cited that book for you because you clearly haven’t read anything on the subject and it’s a good introduction (and there are plenty of citations in it).

            If you’d prefer another one, there are plenty others. Try “Adam and Eve after the Pill” by Mary Eberstadt, for instance:

            I’m getting the sense you’d just rather not know. Your choice.

            But don’t pretend to know anything about the topic, then.

        • Research is inherently conservative. No one cites her, and she cites no one. That means there is no context under which to assume she’s right, other than your opinions match hers.

          • Don – More falsehoods. You have no idea what you’re talking about. She’s very well-known and widely cited. Again, learn something about this subject, or just be quiet about it.

        • Listen dude, I’ve ran her through every journal database that my extremely large research institution has access to. She has books and articles in newspapers, no peer reviewed work at all.

          She has ZERO research publications, no research collaborations, no peer reviewed work, and no credentials in the social sciences. That’s a fact.

          I don’t know what industry you are in, but anyone can write any book or article they want on any opinion and no matter how many people “like it” it doesn’t make it true. “Peer reviewed” doesn’t mean that people simply pontificate on her writings. “Citations” doesn’t mean that people mention her work in other contexts. Peer reviews and citation means that they’ve replicated studies, validated her models, and built upon them.

          So that’s not a falsehood. Get to a library that has access research publication databases and search for yourself.

      • Also, the author has zero background or experience in either research or the social sciences. She has a M.A. in English Literature. She’s a writer who has an opinion and wrote a book about it. You agree with that opinion. That’s that.

  6. The more people that own guns the better off we are. At this point guns are so commonplace that attempting an outright ban would have the same results as attempting to ban cars.

    I don’t care about your religion or your sex life or your race. I want your support in our fight to keep our guns. After all, the constituion has that little line in it, “All men are created equal.” The 2a is the most important amendment to me, but I support the entire document.

    • I agree with you wholeheartedly jwm. The only thing that should matter on a gun forum is a person’s position on firearms. A personal position on politics or sexuality or a person’s race, ethnicity or religion should not be of import. At the end of the day-with all our peculiar differences we share time here due to our support for the 2A. On that note, I welcome Susan to TTAG.

    • Actually, that’s the DOA; the Constitution makes no such assertion, and in accepting slavery and apportionment, restricting the right to vote to landed white males (free negroes, for instance, were excluded) and who could e a citizen it rather says otherwise in its original form.

      Fortunately, that’s been fixed but arguments remain about the constitutionality of the methods used in the fixing and the effects of same.

      Anyway, yes I believe that we’re motsty born equal – there are physical and mental variances, as politically incorrect as it is to acknowledge them – but I do wish that folks born here had to take the same tests used in the naturalization process before they could vote.

      • Hey, Russ – I think you’re a bit off there about the Constitution. The Constitution doesn’t mention anything about property requirements for voting. In fact there’s not even any mention of white or black, male or female.

    • I’ll second that (in addition to my shotgun suggestion above), although if you can find a .357 you can afford, go for it. All the benefits of a .38 Special plus the .357 option.

      Where I shop .38 is more expensive than 9mm, by a few dollars a box. However, it’s also a little easier to find!

  7. There are all sorts of women that carry guns that I would never guess did. This last weekend a woman from Indiana came out here to Washington state on a visit and wanted to drive the North Cascades Loop through Winthrop. She had read about it. So we took her. She asked about the necessity of bringing a gun! I was a bit shocked and asked why she thought a gun was necessary. She said because there are grizzly bears, cougars and wolves there! She read about it. I assured her that the predators would not tear her out of the car! I told her she can be assured of not seeing ANY large animals except two or three flavors of deer. She saw all three and thought that only the whitetail were “nice” looking because they looked like her deer! She thought the blacktail and mule deer were rather “inelegant” whatever that means. They look like deer to me.

    She said that how she travels all over the Midwest by herself for her job and always carries a 9mm Ruger. She has an Indiana carry permit which she showed us. She says it means nothing in Illinois but she carries there anyway because she considers it the most dangerous place she has to visit. Her answer to the law against concealed carry was “Fvck ’em.” Believe me, this woman does not look like anyone you would guess would carry a gun.

    I had to assure her that Washington was damn safe from all predators, four and two legged and that she didn’t need her Ruger for a 400 mile scenic drive. I did throw a FN 5.7 with silencer in the trunk for fun though. She got a kick out of that.

    Seattle, where we started, is the most dangerous city and it has a murder rate similar to Vancouver, BC. Slightly higher on average but it sure isn’t Chicago. And if you compare the European populations of both cities, well some years Vancouver is higher than Seattle. A Ruger in the purse is not necessary here but it is kind of nice to see women that want to protect themselves.

    • “…A Ruger in the purse is not necessary here…”

      Until it is. As far as I know, no house in my current home town has ever burned to the ground. I still have a fire extinguisher.

      • Yeah, well she didn’t need it. I don’t think you understand the circumstances. She was with us not alone. We were going to a very remote part of the state where there are few people let alone criminals. In fact morning we drove for two hours without seeing another car or another human being. She commented on how it was like an episode from the Twilight Zone where we were the last people on earth. No, she did not need a gun. In the unlikely event a gun was needed there was one available. I like being prepared too but I don’t like being paranoid and I am absolutely certain my job entails a lot more danger than yours. I know a bit about assessing risk.

        I mentioned the incident because it was fresh in my mind from a few days ago and that it was nice to see a lady that carried a gun. I don’t need a lecture from you on how it is possible that something can happen. I know that. In fact I would say I know the situation in my state a hell of lot better than you do.

      • Yeah, well she didn’t need it. I don’t think you understand the circumstances. She was with us not alone. We were going to a very remote part of the state where there are few people let alone criminals. In fact morning we drove for two hours without seeing another car or another human being. She commented on how it was like an episode from the Twilight Zone where we were the last people on earth. No, she did not need a gun. In the unlikely event a gun was needed there was one available. I like being prepared too but I don’t like being paranoid and I am absolutely certain my job entails a lot more danger than yours. I know a bit about assessing risk.

        I mentioned the incident because it was fresh in my mind from a few days ago and that it was nice to see a lady that carried a gun. I don’t need a lecture from you on how it is possible that something can happen. I know that. In fact I would say I know the situation in my area a hell of lot better than you do.

      • Yeah, well she didn’t need it. I don’t think you understand the circumstances. She was with us not alone. We were going to a very remote part of the state where there are few people let alone criminals. In fact morning we drove for two hours without seeing another car or another human being. She commented on how it was like an episode from the Twilight Zone where we were the last people on earth. No, she did not need a gun. In the unlikely event a gun was needed there was one available. I like being prepared too but I don’t like being paranoid and I am absolutely certain my job entails a lot more danger than yours. I know a bit about assessing risk.

        I mentioned the incident because it was fresh in my mind from a few days ago and that it was nice to see a lady that carried a gun. I don’t need a lecture from you on how it is possible that something can happen. I know that. In fact I would say I know the situation in my area

  8. One of the most liberal people I have ever known — a 60 y/0 guy born and raised in Santa Cruz — is a pretty staunch gun rights guy and owns a couple himself. I mean, he’s an ex hippy, granola, environment, global warming, hates GW, is left of most Dems, is a vegetarian, drives an old VW, has been with his ‘wife’ for 35 years but they aren’t legally married, etc etc… would never give up his rifle in a million years and believes gun ownership is as much of a civil right as free speech or voting or anything else.

    …not really sure what the point of that ^^^ is, other than to corroborate the story and say, yeah, people who own guns can’t be accurately stereotyped as ‘right wing’…

    • for me, there are single vote issues that will make me vote against you. 1. Try to tell somebody else what to do with their body. 2. Try to take away any Constitutional rights.

    • The fact that each major political party only stands for SOME individual liberties (and not always strongly for those) is increasingly frustrating. I have always scolded people for throwing away their votes by going libertarian. I’m getting it more and more.

      • Yes. I voted Libertarian in the last Pres election, because my state is not a swing state at all. I wasn’t “wasting” my vote. Therefore, I felt absolutely free to vote how I really felt, and I liked it.

      • When you get right down to it, the best way to not waste your vote is to not cast it. In today’s political realities, that’s undeniable.

  9. I know many how do you say leftists paint gun owners with a broad brush as racist old fat white guys. However that is not the reality. I am what you would call libertarian.
    I don’t think that the government should be selling (purely for revenue reasons) “marriage licenses” much less telling people who they should marry. You know we used to forbid blacks from marrying whites in this country as well and look back on that now and tell me how silly that was. Feel free to belong to a church where homosexuals are not welcome if you want but don’t show up at any military funerals.
    I also don’t think the government on any level has the right to ban abortion. And no, I’m not a fan.
    And don’t get me started on the whole marijuana prohibition, it’s the same as the alcohol prohibition only this country is too stubborn to see the havoc that it is wreaking on itself. If we could stop the drug war, violent crime would plummet across this country and in Mexico and central america.

    All that said, we need to, as a second amendment community, reach out to those who we don’t think of as typical gun owners. We need to educate people and take them to the range and face it gays, lesbians do face hate crime and women do face rape much more than is reported. Also think of those in minority communities who are good upstanding people but are powerless over the gangs. In order to bring back the gun culture of our history, we need to reach out through our organizations and individually to bring people into out world.

    • Thank you to all the folks who welcomed this woman. I am not ashamed that I am born of inner city Brooklyn and have bumper stickers for Obama and the NRA. Wake up! there are more than one issue in each election. I don’t agree with the President about 2A but I also have other beliefs. Some people just want to hate Democrats and Obama. That is silly and short sighted. We need more diversity or we will be put aside as irrelevant. Someone said earlier the good old days…..weren’t so good ……….actually for black folks, women, gays and other minorities, …..they sucked. Why can’t we just say we agree about 2a but disagree about other issues. Even in the projects of Brooklyn we could agree to disagree with class. In the words of Rev. Al Green, Lets stay together !

      • I’m a strong conservative, and I agree that we need as many gun lovers as we can get, and from all quarters.

  10. in summary… don’t make assumptions about who favors gun ownership and the 2nd Amendment rights we cherish….

  11. Hey let’s interview left handed, hermaphroditic, one legged, half mexican half chinese, deaf, midget, former gun haters too? Sound like you gave this person a social soapbox, not a gun owning soap box to stand on. Defense is a human right… all the hyphens be darned.

    I bet she voted for Obama… The horse left the stable, closing the gate won’t bring it back. She clearly prized social issues over her gun rights.

    • Do you need assistance as to how not to have to read stuff like that here anymore?

      It’s not yours. It’s not mine. It’s OURS.

  12. It’s interesting to see the evolution of a gun owner that was originally scared. We can all learn from this and she can probably teach us how to teach others that feel the same way. Welcome!
    I also find it interesting how ignorant, rude, and aggressive people can be towards others (total strangers) even in the GUN OWNERS community. The beauty of the United States, is that we have FREEDOM that people would die for, and have. We do not have to be clones of one another to appreciate that underneath, we are all human, and want the same basic things.
    We have all heard that guns make a polite society, obviously this is highly inaccurate, as guns are inanimate. PEOPLE decide to be polite, kind, loving, empathetic, etc or not.
    What do you choose?

    • Ed, your post is right on point. Why badger this woman? I welcome her to our community. We should embrace newcomers of all types as long as they are law abiding citizens. One of our goals should be to show the country that we cannot be stereo typed. Welcome Susan.

  13. I’d say back to her, go for it on your views, but if you’re armed and respect the 2A, you really should join the “gun culture”, as it’s for everyone who supports and respects the 2A.

    • There’s one point she brought up that is also relevant to the David Frum article recently; that one common “gun control” tactic is economic. From high ammo prices to high gun prices, to expensive licenses and permits … there’s a strong train of thought there that it’s the poor that need to be kept away from firearms.

      Same thing with other things deemed “bad,” for that matter. Alcohol, tobacco, pornography, prostitution, etc etc. Notice how time and again the cheapest forms of it are the ones cracked down upon? Because the elites rig the system so that they can still get what they want for what, to them, is very little pain.

      Without governmental interference (e.g. strong import restrictions, among a bunch of other things), safe and effective firearms would be a lot cheaper than they are. And from my point of view, that would be a good thing; who needs personal protection more than a poor person, who may only be able to afford to live in a higher-crime neighborhood? And note that the police are a lot more responsive to the needs of the well-off than they are to the needs of the poor.

  14. Welcome aboard, Susan, the right of effective self defense is an inalienable and universal right.

  15. Welcome Susan!

    For those carping about voting, a reminder from wiki

    On July 1, 2004, Romney signed a permanent state ban on assault weapons, saying at the signing ceremony for the new law, “Deadly assault weapons have no place in Massachusetts. These guns are not made for recreation or self-defense. They are instruments of destruction with the sole purpose of hunting down and killing people.”

    Armed intelligentsia had no real choices in last election. (and no,I didn’t vote for BHO)

    • Well put, SubZ. I didn’t vote for a presidential candidate because there was no one representing my views. (Now, if Ted Cruz or Mike Lee had been the nominee, I would have left my job to work for the campaign…)

    • MA already had a PERMANENT AWB. It was enacted in 1998, well before Romney. It had no sunset clause like the Federal AWB. The 2004 replacement was and remains far better than the 1998 AWB that it replaced.

      Know your facts. Read this from the MA Gun Owners Action League.

      • According to your link, he didn’t know what he was signing. Hence the quote from wiki. Not sure that makes it better…

  16. The notion that 2A support is “owned” by the right is a not-strictly-true notion that the anti-2A people use to 1) divide the pro 2A group and 2) force through embarrassment and ridicule the non-right wing pro 2A people into the closet regarding their 2A support. Where the anti-2A people win the most ground is through #2. We should therefore consider candidly the notion that “if you are pro 2A you are my friend” on this issue, in this fight, and give anyone that satisfies that criteria our help and support.

  17. My 2 cents worth on people being dems and gun owners. The dems used to be, in my youth, pretty solid supporters of 2a. If enough people like Susan get active in the dem party maybe they can be the party that’s supportive of the 2a again. Maybe. I’m willing to take that chance. It’s better than giving the dems completely over to the bidens and urkels.

    I was a staunch repub, but now I’m an independent. The most important issue for me is my guns. I will vote for any pro 2a pol regardless of party.

  18. Thank you, TTAG, for this series, which is valuable in showing the breadth of gun ownership and fighting against the stereotypes of gun owners, which are used against us.

  19. “She now lives in a large city where tolerance and acceptance are the norm . . .”

    I’ve lived in Chicago, Phoenix, San Francisco (15+ years), and Portland. By far the least tolerant place that I’ve ever lived was San Francisco unless of course you are female, not straight, an illegal alien, far-left, a minority, homeless, and probably a few more exceptions.

    • Well, your mileage might vary – but she does qualify under some of those [ed] exemptions.

  20. “People who own guns are not necessarily who you’d expect. They can have very liberal views, they can be vegetarian or vegan and they may not be part of the gun culture.”
    Yes well when these people vote a byproduct seems to be more gun control. Susan may personally hold special views on guns but that’s not the norm amongst the liberal crowd.

    • But it should be the norm. Leftists believe that various “minority groups” are always under threat of attack. In that case, shouldn’t Leftists be the most zealous advocates for gun ownership?

      • Leftists WERE the most zealous advocates for gun ownership. They WERE all about everyone owning a firearm, learning how to use it, and then using it to gain power in the federal government for leftists. That was the 60’s.

        Now that those very same people are in charge they don’t want anyone to have access to a firearm for the same reasons they advocated their use in the first place. They recognize them as a potential threat to their power.

        • Yes, that’s true of a handful of leaders and groups – Malcolm X, the Weather Underground, the Black Panthers – but most on the Left were pushing for massive gun control. Hence the Gun Control Act of 1968, signed by LBJ, and lots of anti-gun legislation in many, many states.

  21. I’d like to thank ‘Susan’ for doing the interview.

    There are some interesting comments after the interview.
    Some are uncalled for, but we all have the right to freedom of speech – – so far.
    I am someone who lives on the other side of the coin.
    I try to give the community in general the impression that I am a right wing kind of person. White middle class male, open gun supporter, avid shooter and all that sort of thing. Behind the scene, I am bisexual, cross dressing, middle of the road voting registered democrat (No, I didn’t vote for Mr. Obama.)

    As a member of Pink pistols, it is nice to hear from some of my brothers and sisters who are more open about their life styles, and I support them whole heartedly.

  22. Good article that shows that gun ownership isn’t limited to demographics.

    The comments, however, tell a tale of how the gun rights community marginalizes itself and loses battles. It loses by alienating those who might believe in gun rights, but also believe in social programs. It alienates pro-choice people who would otherwise like to be a part of the gun community by bringing dead babies into every debate. It loses moderate democrats who would like to push their candidates towards pro-2nd views because anyone who votes dem must be useless.

    The anti-gunners have a losing argument, backed by made up ‘facts’ and poor logic. Why, then, are we still having to fight these battles? Because of those who want to make a litmus test for who gets to be part of the gun movement. Because of those who demand an adherence to ALL of their values in order to be allowed to be a gun rights proponent.

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