“Guns are dangerous. I never wanted one in my home. But a month ago, I bought a handgun and I learned how to shoot it,” says Kat Traylor. “Right now, I need a gun to be safe in this country.” https://t.co/VvcP2KbaY2 pic.twitter.com/GZX4p9KOlY
— New York Times Opinion (@nytopinion) July 2, 2020
Many black Americans are, for the first time, deciding that owning a gun is necessary to protect themselves and their families. The New York Times presents this video op-ed along with a soto voce lament that we live in a country in which black people — or anyone for that matter — feel the need to own a gun in order to ensure their safety.
What the Times doesn’t know — or, to be more accurate, refuses to acknowledge — is that Americans of all colors, black included, have been buying guns for this very reason since, well, forever. There are over 100 million gun owners (probably far more) in the US. That population is comprised of every sex, gender, religion, color and political persuasion. And as recent numbers make clear, that number is growing rapidly.
Not everyone is happy about this, but when you consider who’s expressing alarm at the spike in gun sales, you have to conclude that it is, in fact, a good thing.
BREAKING: Just when you thought the news couldn’t more depressing…8.3 million guns have been sold in the United States since March, meaning 2020 is on course to be the biggest year for gun sales in American history.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) July 1, 2020
What the Times finds so disturbing is that the people who are featured in the video — like so many people these days — are coming to gun ownership at all. They’re buying their first firearms in the knowledge that, as one woman says, “That was a turning point for me…understanding that the people who are supposed to take care of us and keep us safe may not always be there for us.” Go figure. That same realization is being shared these days by more and more people of every demographic group.
In the Times’ world, white Americans buying guns is prima facie evidence of systemic racism. Black Americans (or any other minority for that matter) buying guns is solely a response to white Americans’ racism.
While actual racism may be a motivating factor in the buying decisions of some tiny percentage of gun buyers, whatever their color, the vast majority purchase firearms for all the same reasons people in this country have always bought them: hunting, sport shooting, recreation, personal, family and home defense. They also have come to understand that, to paraphrase the woman above, you truly are your own first responder.
So while the isolated, effete opinion shapers at the Times cluck disapprovingly at the decisions Americans make regarding their safety, out here in the real world, people are lining up and buying up every gun and round of ammunition they can get their hands on.
No one in this country, no matter what identity group into which the Gray Lady would segregate them, has been unmoved or unaffected by what they’ve seen over the last 90+ days. That includes the people the Times has cherry-picked for their video. And this reasoned, rational response by the population at large isn’t likely to change any time soon.