We’re blessed in most of the US in regards to our rights, and with that blessing comes a large responsibility to secure it for future generations.
I think one of the most important battles we fight in keeping our rights is the battle of public perception.
I’ve talked extensively on the podcast and blog about how I’ve found just being a normal guy, who is open about guns tends to win the favor of most people when the topic comes up. People are quick to ask questions when you’re just a normal guy who’s not all “mah rights!” in their face all the time.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I love muh rights, but in the battle of public perception, it’s seen as a bit of an extreme thing to lead with. If the conversation goes there, no worries, that’s totally fine, but if someone asks you why you carry, and you respond “Because the 2A is my gun permit! They can take it from my cold dead hands!” you’re not going to win them over to our side. Someone on the fence will put up a wall at that point.
Here’s some things you can do to be a good steward of the 2A:
- Be normal. Just be yourself around people, and don’t change when the topic of guns comes up. As i mentioned a minute ago, I’ve seen a lot of people clam up, and get huffy when they’re met with a differing opinion. Personally, I tend to just blow off someone whos in my face about not liking guns when they’re clearly not educated on the issue. IF someone is well educated on guns, and they still don’t like them, then I can at least respect their opinion, even if I think they’re wrong.
- Don’t be a jerk. Open carrying a rifle into WalMart to buy diapers and toothpaste is being a jerk. OCing with a tan drop-leg holster, multicam hat, and a FDE Infidel T-shirt is being kind of jerk-ish too. I don’t have any problem with open carry, I really don’t, but my problem comes when people carry with the intent of showing off in public, and not the intent of carrying for actual self protection. I think Tam at the View from the Porch blog called it Second Amendment Cosplay at one point, and she’s totally right. I think you should carry with the intent being self protection, not to show off, not to “educate” the public, etc.As an aside here, I want to mention something I hear all the time: “nobody ever even notices when I open carry”I call shenanigans. I used to run the security department at a large retailer, and I can tell you, when someone would walk in open carrying, (didn’t matter what they looked like, white, black, asian, man, woman, whoever) my phone would ring off the hook. “Lucas, there’s a guy in here with a gun, what do we do?!”
- Don’t do stupid irresponsible crap, and for the love of Pete, don’t post videos of it on the internet. I don’t really care if you want to blow up your washing machine with binary explosives, but I don’t feel like doing this sort of thing really helps our cause. A lot of people are put off by the “dumb ignorant toothless white redneck from the south” and this sort of thing just kind of perpetuates that, even if you don’t fit that stereotype.
- Be helpful! If someone has legitimate questions, and they’re asking them genuinely, go out of your way to be helpful. Offer to take them to the range, offer to pay their range fees and provide some ammo. Lets face it, shooting is fun as heck, so helping people to be educated about it does nothing but help our cause.
Gear that Doesn’t Suck
The Caldwell Ballistic Precision Chronograph is a great buy. The app works well, and I don’t have any complaints about the chronograph itself. If you reload, I think you should at least put a chronograph on your short list of things to buy.
Last week the BATFE released a memo that wetted nitrocellulose would be classified as an explosive and be subject to the transportation and storage rules that go along with that. The trouble with this is that it came down without any warning, and the firearms industry isn’t setup to handle this sort of change overnight.
Here’s the way I understand it (I’d like to point out that I basically knew nothing about this stuff until I spent a couple hours googling it this morning, so take this with a grain of salt):
- Nitrocellulose is a component of smokeless powder. It’s needed in the process of making ammo.
- Up until last week or thereabouts, if it was wetted with a specific amount of water or alcohol it could be transported and stored without being classified as an explosive.
- Not being classified as an explosive allows it to be transported without the licenses and regulations that go along with that, and it’s basically not explosive while it’s wetted (at least that’s how I understand it).
So, if this were implemented, it would really shake up the industry, because the logistics of this would basically change everything. You could expect to see ammo and powder costs rise, and I really suspect it would have a nasty effect on the entire industry as a whole.
Thankfully, it seems like the BATFE is reeling this back in a bit, but I don’t think we’ve seen the last of this sort of thing.
There’s a charity match coming up that you local folks might want to be aware of. It’s Woody’s Warrior/Patriot Match, and you can find the details here.
Don’t forget to send in a voicemail answering the question “What has competitive shooting done for you?”