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Colorado has plenty of guns, millions of gun owners and not a lot of gun laws. So what up with Their article Why Own a Gun? Colorado gun owners speak out seems like a non-problem in search of an already implemented solution. To his credit, writer Monte Whaley knows he’s dealing with a straw man. “Granted, whether someone owns a gun doesn’t matter to most people most of the time.” And then . . .  Columbine! Aurora! And yet gun sales surge! “Who are these people?” Whaley wonders. “Anarchists? John Wayne wannabes? The unhinged? That’s something The Post wanted to find out when it asked on Facebook: ‘Why do you own a gun?'” Ah. Facebook . . .

The resulting article is best described as NRA lite. It reads like a collection of “I Am the NRA” profiles that touch on every possible reason to own a firearm save defending your illegal drug territory from gang-banging N words. Some of the gun owners’ comments are slightly tilted to the left, a couple are anti pro-gun, but there’s nothing in the piece to scare the horses. For example . . .

[Gary] Reed enjoys the elegance of guns and how they feel in his hands. He participates in — and often wins — Cowboy Action Shooting contests around the country.

He believes most gun owners represent the down-to-earth values of middle America.

Reed, an Army veteran, sees himself as a member of the well-armed militia described in the U.S. Constitution.

“I am ready, willing and able to come to the defense of my country, my state and my community should that ever become necessary,” he said.

But Reed also has little use for most gun-rights groups, many of which gave up talking to the media and putting out a positive message about gun owners.

Reed also wants to take the mystique out guns.

“People need to be taught how to handle guns and take away the Hollywood image of owning a gun,” he said.

Interestingly, Monte Whaley forgets to include a link to the Facebook question for jobbing journos who want to see if there are any unhinged minds amongst respondents. (What are the odds?) Sorry. There was only so much I could take of the post’s MySpace Facebook page.

So I guess we’ll call this a victory for gun rights: an article that presents Colorado gun owners in a flattering light. Part of the normalization process which defends and extends our Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms.

But I can’t help wonder which barbarians Whaley left outside the gate. And how the gun owners selected for the article feel about gun control in general and President Obama’s call for a renewed assault weapons ban in particular. Not as antagonistic as one might hope, methinks.

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  1. Inevitably they start the story off with a good dose of Fuddism. How annoying.

    I like Ms. Whitney, though. She’s like me. I woke up after taking several criminal justice courses and being told by a few professors that you SHOULD own a gun for self-protection.

    ‘Whitney says there is no guarantee she and her weapon could prevent a Virginia Tech-style attack on the CU campus.

    “But I think we should all be given a fighting chance,” she said.’


    Then I came upon this: “Fenner has three weapons registered in her name and uses them for protection, mostly against predators at her horse farm in Elbert County.”

    Do they really have gun registration in Colorado or is this another case of the media being obtuse?

      • The myth persists everywhere. Too many cop shows where the detectives bust into a house where they don’t have a warrant, see a gun, then ask if they have a permit, and if so, if its registered. I think “Registered in her name” means things along the lines of “she bought them” to gun owners, and makes it sound like she just got them as a gift to non gun owners.

        I was looking at an AR-15 at Wal-mart (Christmas shopping for dad with my mom, told her what I wanted *crosses fingers*) and the guy behind the counter was like “You have to get it registered in his name if you get it for him” and I was just like “Okaaay then… Wal-mart is ammo only from now on” and the guy got flustered and I got a candy bar on the way out. Yay for candy!

        • Well, the problem in the media is that almost all cop shows take place in NYC or LA, where they DO have such violations of the Second Amendment. This is all most people ever see, so they assume it’s true for the whole country.

    • Am I required to register my weapon in the State of Colorado?

      The State of Colorado prohibits gun registration. CRS 29-11.7-102

    • I was asked this just today by a escapee from back east. Besides the federal 4473 form, there is no gun registration in Colorado.

    • Many people all across the country assume guns need to be registered, or you need a license to buy them, or a note from your parents to own one.

  2. I think we would be well served by a regular series of articles like the one written about here. Sure, there will be some crazies, but that’s fine. Post them along with the rest, simply to show that they’re in the extreme minority. As stated here, steps toward normalization are nothing but good.

    • Not one was shown with a “scary looking assault weapon.” Fudd guns are not under attack yet and a lot people don’t care about hunting or pest control as much as they covered it. Also of note is that everyone depicted in the article is white as the driven snow.

      • So, in other words, it’s pretty much ideal coverage if you’re looking for support for the trend towards normalizing gun ownership and usage. Minus the Caucasian bias in the respondent pool, this sure sounds like a win to me.

        • The guns that were featured in the article have always been “normal” out there. Gun banners are always saying they won’t take away ‘grandpappy’s shotgun’.

          Also the only person adamant about self-defense, the most important reason to own a gun, was the college girl. The rest was just fuddish stuff.

  3. “Reed also has little use for most gun-rights groups, many of which gave up talking to the media and putting out a positive message about gun owners”

    — Poor bitter journalist is upset that most gun right groups don’t bother with the biased agenda-driven mass media. How and when does the mass media, which still could do if it choose, put out a positive message about gun owners? Does the mass media ‘need’ to speak with the gun right groups to write a positive story?

    Bottom line: the big mass media’s are losing readers/viewers with some of them going bankrupt, and gun ownership is spreading among the American people.

    • Your bottom line is dead on. Most newspapers are becoming irrelevant because almost all news can be found online from another source for not charge. I do pay for some news that’s relevant to my profession, but that’s only because it’s much harder to find online – news stories about the country / world as a whole are everywhere.

      I think the media is getting scared that more and more young people are getting into shooting. Their primary anti-gun base is the baby boomers who were teens / 20-somethings up during the whole “GUNS ARE SCARY!!!” era of the 60’s and 70’s. Now that they’re getting older and less relevant, the media and politicians are losing their stronghold of anti-gun fear.

      • We baby boomers are getting older, that’s true. But less relevant? As a nation we’re getting older and the graybeards make up one large chunk of voting power. And us old farts tend to actually vote at a higher rate than other groups.

        I’ve talked to way too many twenty somethings that have never voted and don’t see it as necessary.

  4. Gun ownership is the only activity where the product being bought, guns, has such a low rate of misuse among legal gun owners but is still rabidly preached against by politicians and supposed “journalist.” Kinda baffling, ain’t it.

  5. President Obama’s call for a renewed assault weapons ban in particular

    That’s a flat-out exaggeration, bordering on a lie.

    When a President calls for legislation to be passed, it’s unmistakable. There are strong statements of support, there’s a public declaration (usually featured in a major speech) that the President wants to see specific elements in the legislation, and there are policies published to support that call. Glad to dig up examples if anyone doubts this.

    President Obama’s lukewarm reference to assault weapons during a debate (note: not in a prepared speech, and with no legislative call to action) does not rise to the level of calling for a renewed AWB by any reasonable interpretation.

    Yes, we need to keep up the pressure and be on our guard regarding Federal dilution of our 2A rights. Let’s not take it into tabloid-newspaper sensationalism and thereby undermine our message, because when reasonable people see stuff like this, it reinforces the perception that 2A rights supporters are paranoid gun nuts.

    • He pretty much said it’s what he wants and that he didn’t think ‘AK-47s should be on the streets.’

      To me that qualifies as throwing your support behind calls to ban ‘assault weapons.’

      Not only that, but it’s in the platform of the DNC. So whatever.

  6. “After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it. I sure as hell wouldn’t want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military.”

    William S. Burroughs

  7. Remember:

    As Governor, Mitt Romney supported the Brady Bill, which imposed a five-day waiting period on gun sales, and a ban on particular semi-automatic rifles.

    “That’s not going to make me the hero of the NRA. I don’t line up with the NRA.” – Mitt Romney

    In 2002, during his campaign for the governorship, Romney said: “We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts; I support them. I won’t chip away at them; I believe they protect us and provide for our safety.” Then he signed a PERMANENT ban on assault weapons in MA!

    The man is a charlatan and a RINO. The lesser of two evils is still evil. The only real defender of 2nd Amendment rights in this election is Virgil Goode.


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