An Open Letter to Gun Control Advocates

To those who wish to ban firearms:

The tragedy that occurred in Newtown, Connecticut is heartbreaking, truly it is.  As an educator, I often wonder and pray that if I’m faced with such an event that I can respond with courage and bravery.  The world needs more ladies like Victoria Soto.  My heart grieves for the families of 20 little angels who will spend their first Christmas in Heaven without their mommies and daddies.  I spent Friday afternoon sobbing at my desk while my students quietly enjoyed Art, blissfully unaware that a gunman had executed over two dozen innocent people.  When I loaded them up to go home, I hugged them each extra tight and told them I loved them.

The mainstream media and many politicians, activists, actors, actresses, and celebrity personalities are calling for a ban on semiautomatic weapons.  Many are calling for a total ban on guns.  If I really felt that another gun control law would stop school shootings and school violence, as an educator, I would be the first on board.  Unfortunately, criminals are not known for following laws–that’s why they are criminals.

Instead of banning guns, which would infringe on the second amendment to the Constitution,  I propose we forge a different path.  Children need to grow up with a working knowledge of firearms.

My oh my, I’m certain that half of you aren’t even going to finish this post.  You’re already scrolling down to the bottom of the comment section to rip me a new one.  That’s fine.  You’re entitled to your opinion.  Regardless of what you say, I’ll stand by my word:  children need a working knowledge of firearms so they can become adults that respect weaponry.

Growing up in the Deep South with a hunter for a father, I naturally grew up around firearms.  My father raised us the same way he was raised.  My brother and I learned all about guns:  how to clean them, store them, and use them.  We also learned to respect the power of a weapon.

My younger brother’s first word was mama.  His second words were treat it like it’s loaded.  From the time we could speak, my father instilled that important virtue.  It was our eleventh commandment–a daily saying like the Lord’s Prayer.  We were taught that guns are amoral.  They are a servant to a human master.  Guns cannot think, speak, or fire themselves.  Guns are dangerous when they are not respected.  We were even taught to treat our toy guns with such reverence–yes, even those with the orange plastic caps on the end.

My father raised children that grew to be adults with a respect for firearms, and other Americans need to do the same.  As a 24 year-old woman, I sleep with a rifle in my closet and I drive with a 9 millimeter in my car.  I’m prepared to protect myself and those around me.  I’m not a gun fanatic.  I’m not even a member of the NRA.  I’m just an American citizen who is thankful for the second amendment right to keep and bear arms.

Recently, my tiny Mayberry was rocked by a home invasion.  A man that lives less than a mile from my farmhouse was shot in his own home.  I slept easily that night knowing that if the criminals attempted to break into my home, that I had the right and ability to protect myself and my belongings.  It’s something our Founding Fathers felt was incredibly important back in 1791–and it’s still important today.  So many Americans are willing to leave their safety to the government.  Y’all, the government can’t even balance a budget!

American pilots that meet the appropriate qualifications are able to carry a weapon into the cockpit.  They, along with Air Marshalls are our first line of defense against terrorists in the air.  Likewise, we as American citizens have the right to defend our homes, families, and ourselves from terrorists on land.  The man that executed those precious babies was not a criminal–in my eyes he was a terrorist.  I will not venture to say that a well-placed weapon in the hands of a teacher or administrator could have stopped this horrible incident because I am not God.

If there ever comes a time when the government allows approved teachers to safely conceal and carry weapons in the classroom, I know my husband and I will be some of the first to sign up.  I also know that we will raise our children in the same way that I was raised:  with a healthy respect for firearms.

As always, our prayers are with the people in Newtown.

Court

Please be respectful in the comments section–that means you, Anonymous.

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Gun Control Advocates

  1. I am not against people owning guns such as a pistol for protection or guns to hunt with, but I see no reason why anyone needs to own a semiautomatic assault rifle. Nancy Lanza owned guns and not one of them protected her. If those had been single shot guns, he would not have blown an opening to get into the school and those children would be alive. I am for legislation against people owning guns do such magnitude.

  2. I don’t know many seeking to completely overturn the second amendment, but many are saying control must become tighter. In this recent case, a troubled young man with apparent issues took his own mother’s guns (from her *collection* – not just the self-defense-pistol she had in her nightstand) and used them. The main weapon was an AR-15 – a semiautomatic first built for the military – which, under the Semiautomatic Assault Weapons Ban from Clinton’s presidency, had restrictions on several features deemed excessive, but expired in 2004. Similar bill were proposed 12 different times after its expiration, but all blocked by members of Congress under pressure from gun lobbyists. You speak of self defense with arms, but will that ever necessitate the use of a semiautomatic rifle designed for infantry use and able hold 30 rounds before having to be reloaded? With any number of other firearms (as the one you may have in your closet?), this young man would have not been nearly as efficient (read: destructive) in his strike. Who is to say he had made his mind up and would’ve attained the guns at any cost? My intuition tells me it could have been a fit of rage that played out the way it did because of a collection of guns readily accessible at home.

    If we put guns in the hands of teachers, you could count down the days to another shooting. Either a situation where student(s) cunningly plan to take the gun and use it, or a teacher uses it inappropriately in a fit of rage. What then? I say this as a teacher who read the story and could horrifyingly imagine myself shielding my kids the same way Ms. Soto did, but also as someone that knows a teacher or two at my own school that I would not dare trust with a gun. Do we not then need to hire, traine, and monitor as law enforcement officials?

  3. I don’t know many seeking to completely overturn the second amendment, but many are saying control must become tighter. In this recent case, a troubled young man with apparent issues took his own mother’s guns (from her *collection* – not just the self-defense-pistol she had in her nightstand) and used them. The main weapon was an AR-15 – a semiautomatic first built for the military – which, under the Semiautomatic Assault Weapons Ban from Clinton’s presidency, had restrictions on several features deemed excessive, but expired in 2004. Similar bills were proposed 12 different times after its expiration, but all blocked by members of Congress under pressure from gun lobbyists. You speak of self defense with arms, but will that ever necessitate the use of a semiautomatic rifle designed for infantry use and able hold 30 rounds before having to be reloaded? With any number of other firearms (as the one you may have in your closet?), this young man would not have been nearly as efficient (read: destructive) in his strike. Who is to say he had made his mind up and would’ve attained the guns at any cost? My intuition tells me it could have been a fit of rage that played out the way it did because of a collection of guns readily accessible at home.

    If we put guns in the hands of teachers, you could count down the days to another shooting. Either a situation where student(s) cunningly plan to take the gun and use it, or a teacher uses it inappropriately in a fit of rage. What then? I say this as a teacher who read the story and could horrifyingly imagine myself shielding my kids the same way Ms. Soto did, but also as someone that knows a teacher or two at my own school that I would not dare trust with a gun. Do we not then need to hire, train, and monitor as law enforcement officials?

  4. A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed..

    That is not hard to understand.

    Your proud father.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s