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Newbie feels "awesome responsibility"

I took an in-law relative who is not a citizen of the United States (and whose home country makes it very difficult to own a handgun) to the range last weekend. He had never fired a gun before in his life.

He was not pre-disposed to being "anti-gun" nor particularly "pro-gun." Gun ownership simply does not intersect with his life in his home country.

The thing that struck him the most is "the awsome responsiblity of handling and firing a gun." This is the exact same thing I experienced when I first handled a firearm. Frankly, they scared the bejeezus outta me.

Since then, I've encountered the many, many dissuasions the State provides to gun owners: restrictions on types you can own, restrictions on where you can take them, restrictions on why you can take them to allowed places, restrictions on things you can attach to them, restrictions on how much ammunition you can have to hand, restrictions on storage, and on and on and on.

Some of these laws I support, others I do not. But the thing all those regulations really drives home is that society believes, er, freeborn citizens should seriously consider all of the responsibilities of gun ownership. With that general principle, I agree.

I'm becoming famous for describing gun ownership as a "burden." I still think of it that way.

The thing that is most remarkable, however, is how the physical act of holding and firing a gun made my in-law highly-aware of the responsibility and everything it could mean.

That, I think, is a good thing.

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Category: Choosing