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KM writes:

I’ve met some pretty awesome people in the gun world. I’ve also scared some people with my newfound love, mainly my ex-boo and my mom. “You know you’re supporting the NRA, right?” she said. “You have a hairpin trigger, you shouldn’t be trusted with a gun,” he said.

Maybe it’s the shock factor that makes guns so appealing to me. But it’s mainly that I’m good at shooting. The more I shoot, the more I feel more confident about protecting myself with a gun.

My gender, in the end, really has very little to do with it. That’s not to say I don’t feel sexy holding a gun. But I’m curious about the women I meet shooting; they make up a smaller percentage of the demographic. So I had quick Q&A with my new shooting buddy Carlee, a 20-something from Wichita, Kansas who’s been living in Austin for a year and a half.

Q: What first brought you out to the range?

A: The first time I went shooting it was with an ex. I wanted to go when we were dating as a bonding experience, but he waited until we broke up to actually take me (probably not the brightest idea taking your ex to a shooting range but no one died so I guess it worked out).

The second time I really wanted to go with my new boyfriend Carlos to learn more about his guns and once again have a bonding experience. Nothing really screams trust like letting someone shoot a gun while you’re standing next to them. Plus, I wanted to impress him with my shooting, apparently I’m a good shot.

Q: You said you liked shooting the Ruger LC9, what specifically about it did you like?

A: I have small hands, so I’m worried about my grip on most guns. I really enjoyed how small the gun was, it felt more comfortable in my hands. I also felt like I could handle the gun easier, like unloading the clip — or magazine? I don’t really know — but I have a hard time with the larger handguns because of how heavy they are and how small my hands are.

Q: Do you plan to carry a weapon? Would the Ruger be your choice?

A: I do not plan on owning a gun. I don’t feel comfortable having one, mainly because I don’t feel the need to own one. Yes, I live alone in a city with no family, I’m originally from Kansas, so some would say I would need the protection, but I feel safe at home. Plus, guns are expensive! I would much rather take that money and get a really mean-looking dog.

I haven’t really given it all that much thought. I’ve never been the victim of a violent crime, and if I were it would probably happen so fast I wouldn’t be able to react with a gun. For myself, I don’t see the need. And the responsibility of owning a gun outweighs the benefits.

Q: Do your friends or family carry?

A: Nope! Even though I am from Kansas no one in my family owns guns. Heck, I made it all the way through college without even buying pepper spray!

Q: What springs to mind when you think of gun culture?

A: Honestly, the first thing that comes to mind are the super gun enthusiasts that run around with their open carry and for some reason own assault rifles — which I’ve shot and enjoyed but I’m still unclear on the reasoning behind owning one — and are convinced their guns will be taken away anytime a Democrat gets elected to anything.

But then I remember there are people like Carlos, that have been trained to use guns, and see the value in owning one or two for home security and don’t really talk about it unless someone else brings it up.

Q: Anything else you’d like to add?

A: I really wanted to learn about Carlos’ guns because I’m in his house so much and I wanted to be comfortable with them. When we got home he showed me how to take them apart and clean them. I definitely am feeling better about having them around the more I know about the way they work.

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  1. “You know you’re supporting the NRA, right?” she said.

    You know the NRA is supporting your rights, right?

    • Could have fooled me with the stuff they’ve endorsed (NFA, GCA, LEOPA, UFA).

      And don’t claim they’ve changed either. They endorsed H.R. 3626 to combat evil ghost gun 3d printed liberators.

      • I know. It’s unfathomable how the NRA has the cajones to hold itself up as some kind of uncompromising bulwark ( FROM MY COLD DEAD HANDS !!! ) against legislative encroachment when it has historically signed on to some of the most disgusting, restrictive and far reaching barriers to civilian gun ownership.
        BTW, LaPierre can be found on YouTube advocating for a national mental health registry ( immediately after Columbine ) among other things. I belong to GOA and I will never support the NRA. In the world of gun rights the NRA are the equivalent of squishy establishment Republicans who campaign as conservatives but govern as liberals.

    • I joined the NRA in the early ’80s because they supported firearms rights. Right? Over the years all they got me for my money was a bunch of begging letters about this or that issue, and offereing to send me another hat for my contribution!

      Bunch of damn hat salesmen if you ask me. lol


  2. The gun,especially in the long run, will cost a lot less than the dog. Also the gun you can tote just about anywhere, not the dog. And this ‘feeling safe’ stuff, get over it because one of the most often uttered phrases in today’s world is “this kind of thing just does not happen here”, until it does.

    • Umm, I don’t know about the gun being cheaper in the long run – gun food (ammo) $$$ for me is MUCH more than dog food $$$. ?

        • I like my guns and my dog. It isn’t an either/or thing for me!

          Of course, my dog is a giant baby and runs away every time I rack the slide or dry fire one in her presence. Heaven forbid I actually fired one near her!

    • In all my years, I’ve never had any of my guns greet me at the door and show genuine happiness to see me. Guns are tools, a dog is family: BIG difference. And yes, both go to bed with me and follow me throughout the house.

        • TRUE. As mentioned guns are tools…they CANNOT and NEVER will turn on an owner or family member on their own. FACT. Dogs are animals, and can and DO indeed attack, maim and KILL children, adults, other dogs on their own volition.

    • I’m a dog lover. They’re really lovable, and great alarm systems, but I wouldn’t bet my life on them in that situation. I trust a dog to raise the alarm on an intruder, and yes, they can be vicious in a fight, I’ve personally had to break up several terrible fights between my own dogs so I know quite well what they’re capable of. But there is no guarantee that a dog will defend their owner in a fight. Dogs are bred to be non aggressive toward humans so it’s quite likely that a dog would just stand back and bark while someone strangles their owner. When it comes to self defense, relying on a dog is little more than emotional comfort.

  3. Now if I could only get my wife to learn how to clean the guns instead of just making them dirty (especially that darn Ruger 22/45 Lite – maybe I should put it in the dishwasher)…

    • The 22/45 is not hard to clean, especially since it just mostly needs a quick clean most of the time. Every couple of years do the takedown thing; just follow instructions. The Ruger how to videos are excellent.

      • I use the Ruger video each time I go to re-assemble the 22/45 Lite. I just can’t get the latch closed; the pin just keeps popping out even though I’m following the Ruger video exactly.

        I think my 22/45 Lite may be defective. I don’t have these problems with my steel 22/45.

        • Everything based on that MKI/II/III design, until the recent redesign is finicky. Once you figure out exactly what that gun wants in terms of placement it’s a breeze.

          Must have taken me a couple dozen disassembly/reassembly runs with my MKII to figure her out.

          Think of her like a picky woman. Caress, finesse and if all else fails pound the shit out of her. She’ll be happy in the end.

    • “…maybe I should put it in the dishwasher)…”

      Or drop it in an ultrasonic bath.

      Have a way to make sure the internals will be dry, though.

      I used a 105c (*just* above water boiling point) oven when I did it, you can make an improvised one with a box and an incandescent light bulb…

  4. Is that a strike 1 in the photo? Anyone have any experience with them? I’m hesitant to try them because of the lack of aftermarket and the last time I looked they stopped by imported.

    • Never seen one in person, but I believe it is by the rear sight being part of the rear plate of the slide. I think the newer version has been sold here in the US. They call it the ” AF-1 STRIKE ONE SPEED ” It has adjustable front/rear sights. I did find a couple of the original models still for sale at Prepper Gun Shop, the new version is sold out.

  5. Anybody else thinking the finger doesn’t belong on the trigger, even with the action locked open?

    You should get into the habit of never touching the trigger unless you’re shooting the gun. Once it’s ingrained as a habit, your chances of ever having a negligent discharge go way down. Pick a spot to keep that index finger, like along the slide above the trigger, and always put it there.

    • Just don’t let it get too ingrained. I was at the LGS the other day picking up some lowers, and a display of trigger packs caught my eye. Literally a row of triggers and not a weapon in sight. “No trigger” is so ingrained, I was hesitant to test them out.

  6. Someone should inform her that the AR is NOT an “assault” rifle, and that it was sold as a varmint hunting rifle before the M-16 was submitted to the US Air Force for testing and adoption, followed by the other services adopting it. It appears that she is reacting to the way it looks combined with the falsehoods spread by the opposition.

    • The AR platform, nor the rounds any of the .22 class rifles fire were available to the public before adoption by the military.

      An AF general, who’s name currently escapes me, requested 80K of the rifles in 1960 but that request was denied by the pols. The rifle was field tested by Army Special Operations in 1961. The rifle performed admirably but some people had questions about the round it was firing, known as .222 Special at the time. Minor tweaks were made and the tweaked cartridge became what we know as 5.56mm. The Army and the Air Force adopted different versions of the rifle in 1963 with the AF model no having a forward assist (which Eugene Stoner didn’t like anyway).

      It wasn’t until 1964 that the a version of the .222 Special cartridge became available to the public under the name “.223 Remington” which was the cartridge that previously had been known as .222 Special.

      .222 is generally where the confusion happens here. Again, .222 Special/.223 Rem, under any name, was not available to the public until 1964 (something like five months after military adoption of the 5.56×45 cartridge) but it’s parent cartridge the .222 Remington was available and had been since 1950. It was a very popular varminting cartridge. .222 Remington (not to be confused with .222 Special) was where the Small Caliber/High Velocity experiments started. That round was found insufficient even after a custom redesign of it was done which stretched the casing to allow for a larger powder load and longer bullet. That rejection kicked off testing of new propellants and other tweaks to the .222 line. Once .222 Rem and it’s, for lack of a better term, wildcats, were rejected work began on a new bullet, the .222 Special which eventually gave us 5.56 and .223 Rem.

      Either way, long story short: military adoption in 1963, publicly available in early 1964. March IIRC.

      .222 Remington ≠ .222 Special or .223 Remington BUT

      .222 Special = .223 Remington.

      • The “Varminter” (if I recall the name correctly) was sold to the public in at least early 1964 before my father’s unit (Air Commandos, Eglin AFB Aux Field #9 where he was an instructor) received the test beds for the M-16 in the 5.56 caliber. During the test phase, they also had a 7.62 chambered version which they took extreme pleasure in blowing up cinder blocks with on the range. The only difference between the two was the full auto function. Advertising described the “Varminter” as a perfect rifle for use on ranch or farm to protect livestock and for hunting small game. I believe it was still sold under the Armalite brand.

        As I recall, Armalite experienced a serious cash flow problem and the rights were transferred to Colt. Possibly because they staked their future on military/government sales in the same way Colt has had repeated problems.

        The earlier tests by the USA were tossed out by the Army brass who preferred wood and steel to a “plastic toy”. The rifle was submitted by Colt in 1964. The USAF Air Commandos adopted it as a significant improvement over the M-1 and M-2 carbines they were using on missions they were not going on.

        At the time the M-16s were being tested, the Air Commandos were also testing various aircraft for special ops missions, including B-25s, C-130s, and C-47s. The B-25s were scrapped because the wing struts snapped under high g’s. The C-130s and C-47s evolved into the “Spooky” and “Specter” gunships we used in Vietnam.

        As for the “bolt assist”, I never saw one until the 1970s. Not carried by USAF, USA, USN, VNAF, or any other branch of military in Vietnam or elsewhere… not even the spooks were carrying them in the Mekong region… and I carried the USAF versions throughout my 21+ years.

        Finally, the commercial version, lacking only auto fire, included (1) 20 round magazine, a fixed carry handle, bayonet lug, pistol grip, and flash suppressor. The ammunition may not have been .223 or 5.56, although I believe it was a hot .22 class. The 223 Remington was introduced to the public as a commercial cartridge by Remington in January 1964, one month later in February 1964 this same cartridge was officially standardized by the U.S. military as the 5.56mm ball cartridge M193.

        • The Army intentionally skewed things in favor of the M14 and were caught doing so by an audit. It had nothing to do with “plastic” and everything to do with preferring the round the rifle fired.

          What you or your father saw in their unit really isn’t material. The history is as I have laid out according to the Lyman’s Reloading handbook and numerous other reputable sources. The fact that you didn’t see a forward assist isn’t surprising since the AF model very specifically didn’t have one and many others didn’t as well. As I said; Stoner thought it was stupid but, like the thumb safety on a 1911, the Army made decrees that had to be followed.

          As for the rest of it, you’re essentially agreeing with me.

          The point stands: .223/.222 Special was NOT available to the general public before it was used by the military.

  7. Soo here is what I get out of the interview:

    I like guns because boys like guns and even though I’m a 20 something feminist, I still want to be protected and get laid.

    Even though I’m a good shot, my safety is just too much of a responsibility, so I wont own a gun let alone carry one. Because feelz.

    I offset my gun/boy fetish by dating Mexican imports like Carlos. I get extra liberal street cred because he’s in MS-13, and I really like neck tats.

    Dogs are better than guns for protection, and you cant cuddle a gun.

    And she probably voted Hillary.

    • So here’s what I get out of your comment:

      Guns are the purview of OFWG’s who were raised in firearm-owning homes. Younger folks, women, minorities, and those who didn’t grow up with weapons need not apply to the club.

      Rights are not to exercised within your comfort. You are required to own and carry a gun, as liberty does not mean every men to his best, but every man to your standard.

      I know little to nothing about the various cultures south of the US-Mexico border and figure it’s all Mexico to the top of South America. Plus, nobody born in Anerica has a name other than John or James. Could you imagine if he was one of those potato farmers like Patrick?

      Knowing my current limitations she protects herself as best she can, but it’s worthless if it isn’t a gun.

      Plus, I want to affirm the stereotype that only racists voted for Donald.

  8. Aside from the personal satisfaction of ownership, a manifest reason for owning a “assault rifle” is political. Think about it.

  9. Shooting modern sporting rifle is enjoyable as she herself admits. What more reason do you need for ownership of one? (I doubt she got her hands on real select fire assault rifle. That’s so giggle inducingly enjoyable she would mention it.)
    Oh – and Democrats do want to get rid of our legally owned semi auto rifles. Just listen to them. Or read their own party program.

    • I don’t think we should be too hard on new shooters who are “butters.” The 2A light bulb does not come on instantly for everyone. The fact that they are shooting and they enjoy it is a good sign. With some more exposure and encouragement they can make it down the logical path. Also, even butters will oppose some gun control measures and be less passionate than anti-gunners about others. Most are more allies than enemies. We will not win the battle for gun freedoms with only hard-core 2A people. The numbers just aren’t there.

  10. This was an odd story, but it does leave me wanting to comment on the AR. She said she didn’t really understand why anyone would own one. When I took my wife and son shooting for the first time, I brought a wide variety of guns. What became immediately apparent to me was how quickly and easily they shot the AR. I didn’t really understand just how much better the ergos are on that gun until I saw two neebies fight using other guns–whether it’s was the fumbly bolt lock on the ruger 10/22, trying to put a mag in an AK, or get a mag out of the M1 carbine. But the AR immediately became their favorite to shoot and it was apparent how easily and quickly they learned to use it. Funny but all the features that Dems hate about the gun are what make it so easy to shoot and learn. Collapsible stocks are evil, but they are essential to a good experience for a woman or younger kid to use it comfortably. The ability to easily load a magazine and then just have fun shooting a semi auto without worrying about fumbling with the thing after each shot. Mag changes were easy, and they both agreed it was their favorite gun to shoot. They both quickly learned that the 30-round mag wasn’t evil, but rather it made the gun super fun to shoot.

  11. So she likes shooting guns but thinks she is safe in the big city and a dog is better than a gun, thinks gun enthusiasts are Rambo wannabe nut jobs, and only sincere somehow qualified “experts” like her squeeze Carlos are qualified to have guns.

    In other words, a typical delusional moonbat Democrat.

  12. I kinda dig the LC9. I nudged my wife in that direction for her first carry gun. She fondled all the guns that fit her hand, without input from me. I followed behind and checked them out after she was done. She decided she wanted a semi in 9mm. I nudged her that way because out of the options laid out the LC9 was the only one without an absolutely horrid trigger.

      • Still, against the guns she fondled that day the LC9 was the best. Even the LCP was mush by comparison. At one point she was trying a Nano, as I recall that was the one without any break or reset whatsoever.

    • I agree about the trigger on the Ruger, it is very good. So many triggers out there are about as bad as it gets, which really is surprising given the amount of technology we have available today. Even the original LCP & LC9, which people complained about, are still way ahead of new S&W and most other brands I have tried.

  13. Although I applaud the young girl for wanting to learn about guns, she is missing the point in stating that she … “doesn’t see a need” or doesn’t … “Have a reason” … to own a gun. It isn’t abut the need or reason, it is about the Having !

    • It’s awkward, but it’s good. This is something. I’ve seen happen in other fields of interest that catch on with the mainstream. The language and type that were shibboleths of the ilk begin to be overwhelmed by that of “regular” folk. Where the small group meant newcomers quickly learning clip vs. mag and laughing about Garand Thumb, now we have to adapt to things like “ex-boo”, which disappointingly does not mean she can see ghosts.

      On one hand, it’s nice to no longer be viewed as a freak; on the other, than means accepting a broader swath of society as they are.

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