The story “Man accidentally shoots himself while trying to show his girlfriend how to handle a pistol” makes me wonder again about all those arguments where people legitimize gun ownership as ‘safe’ or argue owning a gun makes one safer. The article reads:
“ALEXANDRIA, La. (Associated Press) — An Alexandria man was recovering after accidentally shooting himself while showing his girlfriend how to handle a pistol on Saturday in the parking lot of a fast-food restaurant.
Police said the 21-year-old man told investigators he forgot he had just reloaded the gun, and squeezed the trigger while putting the gun into the driver’s door panel. The bullet went through his inner left thigh.
Police said the man repeatedly told investigators he was ex-military and knows how to handle a gun, and was very embarrassed by the incident.”
Now, the curious angel on my shoulder asks me why he was showing his girlfriend how to handle a pistol (and in the parking lot of a fast food station no less!)
The cynic angel pipes up that if this guy is ex-military and “knows how to handle a gun” we had better be pretty damn concerned if this is what you learn in military gun-handling 101.
The anti-patriarchal angel keeps pointing out what a hyper-masculine ass this man seems to be—he is “very embarrassed” that he shot himself in the leg (no ‘real man’ would do this, let alone a military man – what a wuss!) and NOT by the fact that he
1. had a gun in his driver’s door panel in the first place
2. is showing his girlfriend how to use it in a fast food parking lot!
This story makes me think of the old adage “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” Yeah, I never said adages were smart. People can kill people a whole heck of a lot faster with guns.
Sorry, but I can’t buy the pro-gun argument. Sure, there are times I have felt like a gun would serve as good ‘protection,’ as when, say, the secret police come barreling through my door pointing oozies at me because I have been found to support 911 truth and question US imperialism… Or, say when the zombie disease from 28 Days Later hits San Diego and I have to take to the streets, channeling Sarah Connor… Or, I might need a gun if some of the scarier scenarios from Prison Planet came to pass and lock down USA went into effect…
However, in any of these cases, I don’t know how much a gun would actually help. I might be able to survive a bit longer (and would likely have to kill others in the process to do so), but someone is bound to have a bigger weapon or more force and take me out sooner or later anyhow.
Now, in the case of someone breaking into my home Panic Room style, well, I only hope I could channel Jodie Foster. She is one rockin tough broad. But, as for the brand of vengeance she carries out in The Brave One, well, I don’t know if I could stomach it. Seems to me that guns (and the vengeance code they are linked to) only bring about more violence and death – and never any justice. Vengeance is not justice in my book, but a ‘you done me wrong’ selfishness that only serves to perpetuate violence (as in, for example, the ‘war on terror’).
To return the embarrassed ex-military man who shot himself in the leg – will, that’s what guns do, they shoot people. And, if you own/use one, sooner or later you very well may get shot. I’d much rather take my chances living gun free, thank you very much.