Let me preface by saying, this has NOTHING do to with the current gun debate in our country. I am a gun carrying Democrat. No, I don't think they are going to outlaw my right to bare arms. They may restrict who can own a fully automatic weapon. I'm ok with that.
No, this is about the fact that I open carry a Glock 34.
When I first got my restraining order, I couldn't sleep. I was in a constant state of panic. I was waiting for the bomb to go off. I took the class for the carry/conceal permit. In doing so I learned that it's perfectly acceptable, as a law abiding adult, to open carry a side arm in my state. And so.... that's just what I did.
I originally wanted a .22, because of it's size and controlability. My friend, who also open carries, explained that a crazy person could take a couple rounds from a .22 and keep coming. I thought he had an excellent point. So I went with the 9 mm. Enough to blow a hole in someones ass, but not enough to knock me on mine, which kind of defeats the purpose of self defense.
I am a good shot. Back in MI, I used to shoot skeet. Even my first time, I didn't miss any of the moving clay targets with the 12 gauge shot gun. I do get fussed at for not using my sights. I sight down the barrel because I have a better success ratio that way. I hit my target center mass, no problem. And if I really try hard, and the paper isn't moving, I can make a head shot, by lining up the barrel.
I understand the extreme dangers of having a gun in my home. I'm a scatterbrain when it comes to most areas of my life. One thing I am fully aware of at all times is my weapon.
I get a mixed bag of reactions when I open carry in public. Oddly enough, it's usually men who comment on it. And who knew men were so stupid?
As I'm standing at the coffee counter in my painter clothes, they whisper to each other, “She must be an undercover.” I get a little giggle at these sorts of comments. They are the type I get most. I always want to ask if they are naturally so dumb. If I was undercover, why would I have my service weapon on my hip? “Are you a cop?” “Nope, I'm a painter.” I thought that was obvious by my attire. Silly me.
The guy in Target: “Oh no! She's got a gun. Don't hurt me ma'am.” As he jumped back and and waved his hands in the air, the universal sign for “I mean no harm.”
Me: “Don't be stupid.”
He was trying to be funny. I really wanted to say, “Oh no! A black man. Please don't rob me.”, because that's exactly how moronic his comment sounded to me.
My corner 7-11 has a mini precinct in it. Yeah, I live in a bad neighborhood. I'm poor remember? There are always a number of police officers in there on any given day. When I first started to carry, I thought I would get some harassment out of the police for it. Boy was I wrong. One of them actually walked up to me and said, “I wish everyone would exercise that right.”
Since I frequent that 7-11 to supplement my coffee addiction, they know me pretty well there. My favorite clerk told me that the cops talk about me a lot and think it's pretty awesome I am so proactive in my own defense.
I did have an adverse reaction from a woman, standing behind me in line.
Lady: Is that thing real?
Me: Yes ma'am. (In my head: No, it's a freaking water gun.)
Lady: Can I ask why?
Me: Because I have a crazy ex-husband and the piece of paper the protective order is written on won't do me much good if he sneaks up on me.
She took an exaggerated step back. Oh well. She should feel blessed she doesn't have to stress about those sorts of issues.
My mom, bless her heart, went a little nuts when she learned about it. We didn't speak for a week. Opting instead to express our opinions in email. She was convinced I'd shoot myself or one of my kids. She had no interest in hearing that I know what I'm doing. I ended the conflict by explaining that I would respect her by not bringing it into her home, and she should respect my right to have it in the first place.
Before “dating” Bam I explained that I carry a gun, and that if he had a problem with it, he should let me know now. Though he said he was Okay with it, it turns out he wasn't. I told him politely to fuck off. Repeatedly.
A large guy once asked me, “Whats a little girl like you need such a big gun for?” My reply? “I think you just answered your own question.”
The judge wrote out in our custody and visitation order that my weapon should be secured with a trigger lock. And that my minor child should not be allowed to handle it unsupervised. That is so ridiculous that I can't even muster a response. I will say that I am not one of those parents who lets a 9 year old fire a gun.
The Glock is currently separated from it's clip. The two pieces are locked away in different locations. With all that's going on with DQ, I felt it best to take a break from carrying it. Her safety is more important than my feeling safe.