The week before my arrival in the USA, everything already packed and in the container. I watched a TV report about Virginia, my future home. And what I saw freaked me out : all the ladies had guns in their purses, as common as wearing lipstick.
After a few months in the USA, I had to go to the courthouse with our HR manager. He parked his car on the parking lot and told me to leave my guns and phones in the car. He opened his glove box to store his phone and a gun fell on my lap. I screamed as if it were a snake and he laughed.
After these two experiences, I had to understand : what is it with the Americans and their guns ?
Let’s dig a bit
The Americans and their guns is like the French and their baguettes : you cannot have one without the other. The right to keep and bear arms is protected by the Second Amendment of the Constitution, it is ingrained in their DNA. It is even said that there are as many guns as people in the USA.
To understand what it is with the Americans and their guns, I decided to dive into it deep by taking shooting lessons. I found a shooting range on line and registered for a “ladies only” beginner course. Interesting to know that sime marketers are working on that specific segment ! I spent 8 hours on a Saturday with 16 other ladies to learn how to shoot.
First, half of the ladies in the room already had their own guns. Yes, guns with a “s”. Their husbands offered them as Christmas or anniversary gifts. Not roses or a diamond ring, but a gun. Some of them were even pink. When the (lady) teacher asked what the students’ expectations were, two-thirds of the attendees stated it was for protecting their family, their kids, their home. After an hour of class, I touched my first gun ever, a caliber .22. I learnt the safety rules, what a gun and an ammunition are, how to put ammos in the magazine, how it works.
Tip ; do not have your nails done right before taking a shooting class. Putting ammos in a magazine just kills your freshly painted nails if you do not know how to do it.
After a few hours of theory, it was time to go to the shooting range for practice. The very first time I entered the shooting range and heard the bang of a real shoot, I was shocked by the noise. Everyone wears protection for the ears and for the eyes too : the cases of the ammos jump out of the guns, burning, when one shoots.
When it was my turn to shoot, I felt such an adrenaline rush, but at the same time totally in control. Best stress relief ever.
What happened next ? I am hooked, addicted. Not for protection or to feel powerful, but for the stress management it provides. I have now requested my concealed handgun permit and will take a couple more shooting lessons before I buy my own guns. Yes, guns with a “s”….
So based on that
The Americans and their guns, so much said or written about it. Give it a chance, stay open minded. You could be surprised.
About the author - Melanie Mailly-Demont
If I were a year, it would be 2001, my wedding to the most wonderful man in the world
If I were a color, a bright one for sure !
If I were a song, it would be an old country song by Patsy Cline or Dolly Parton.
If I were a number, it would be 8, the number of years I have lived in the USA
If I were a landscape, the lakes of Finland where I lived a decade ago
If I were an animal, a big fat lazy cat sleeping in the sun with a full belly. Pretty much like Garfield !