[lit-ideas] Re: Didn't I tell you so?

  • From: JimKandJulieB@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 30 May 2006 20:50:17 EDT

The only conceivable reason I could imagine for owning a gun is  protection.  
I prefer either mace or pepper spray, depending on which does  least lasting 
damage (something I keep putting off investigating).
My ex had a farmer buddy who owned a gun.  We went out to his house  once and 
Dennis (my ex) and Bob decided to shoot a gun at some tin  cans.   I had 
never even touched one.  I asked to try once.   Simply holding it was an 
surge of feeling of power.  I fired  it.  Firing it was nothing special and I 
had no particular desire to do so  again....just wanted to see once what it 
was like.
I do, however, have a penchant for knives -- not ordinary kitchen knives,  
but ivory handled knives, , bone-handled knives with carvings, a large knife my 
husband picked up at a flea market with the curved end style, very very 
heavy,  well balanced, beautiful wood, marked "made in Pakistan", a small 
mother of pearl handled knife.  I have no use for any of them.  I just  find 
them aesthetically pleasing.
Julie Krueger
collector of knives and masks
(I don't EVEN wanna know what that means)

========Original Message========     Subj: [lit-ideas] Re: Didn't I tell you 
so?  Date: 5/30/06 6:02:32 P.M. Central Daylight Time  From: 
_lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxxx (mailto:lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx)   To: 
(mailto:lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx)   Sent on:    

As Taylor tells us, we  have a lot of reasons for the things we believe and 
do.  You live in Canada  and donât want a gun because guns kill people.  The 
implication being that  you donât want a gun because you donât want to kill 
anyone.  I wasnât  raised with any idea like that.  Guns are offensive or 
defensive depending  upon who has them and what his intention is.   The guy 
coming to 
rob  you and kill you if necessary intends his gun for offensive purposes, 
but you,  if you had a gun could use it for defensive purposes.  You could let 
him  know you had a gun and perhaps that would cause him to leave yours tackle 
a  less-defended house, or you could actually use it for defense if he were  
persistent.  But, of course if there are few criminals in Canada who use  guns 
to do such things as I described, then why bother?  In such a peaceful  
environment only hunters, target shooters, and perhaps war-paraphernalia  
would be interested in owning guns.   
At Boeing years ago, my  office was across the aisle from a very Liberal 
fellow who was against the  owning of guns.  His wife was Canadian and he used 
travel up there  regularly â claimed to be treated rather shabbily by the 
Canadians by the  way.  This fellow lived near the beach and had something of a 
hippy  life-style.  Sometimes on holidays people who used the beach would park 
in  his driveway so that he couldnât park his own car there.  He had a lot of 
confrontations with them.  He was a big guy and despite his Liberal  leanings 
could confront with the best of them.  He also had a baseball bat  in his 
bedroom for defense.   
If you donât feel  comfortable with a gun because you were taught certain 
things about them, had  certain experiences with them, or you canât remember 
but just donât like  them, then you shouldnât have a gun.  Get a baseball 
or get good locks  on your doors and windows and hope if someone ever does 
try to break in that the  police will get there before they get to you.   
Furthermore, your  chances are probably good no one will target your house.  
16% of men  will contract prostate cancer sometime in their lives.  The chances 
of your  being robbed in your home are probably much lower than that.  I think 
it  entirely reasonable to rely upon the laws of chance and take no 
precautions  against either eventuality.    

From:  lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] 
On Behalf Of Paul Stone
Sent: Tuesday, May 30, 2006 2:00  PM
To:  lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Didn't I tell you  so?
At 04:26 PM 5/30/2006, you  wrote:

I havent heard anyone  address the most important question: had these guys, 
the ones whose testosterone  went up, ever fired guns before.  So much myth 
has been created in recent  years about guns; they probably had little or no 
experience with guns and  thought they were doing something dangerous.   

I fired lots of b-b and pellet guns when I was a kid  and did target practice 
a lot. Until I was an adult, I had never fired a gun.  Since [hand] guns are 
basically a complete hassle to own -- and even more of a  hassle to fire -- in 
Canada, the whole gun thing was never much of an issue.  Besides, I'm 
basically non-violent and believe that guns DO at least ENABLE  people to kill 

One day, a friend of mine and I went to Detroit  and we were driving down a 
main street and we saw a "gun shop and range" that  advertised "walk in and 
fire any of our guns". We looked at each other and said  "hmm.. that sounds 
of interesting" (I was about 25 at the time). We went in  and selected 6 or 7 
guns and over the course of about 90 minutes went into the  target room and 
fired off dozens of rounds of ammunition for different guns.  

Bill (my friend) had fired a gun a few times, so he went first -- i have  to 
admit I was excited but petrified (the myths being what they are) and his  
first gun was a .357. The first shot was a very low BOOM with a concussive 
that made my chest vibrate. I was intrigued to say the least. I lined up my  
cop-issue .38 revolver and fired off a shot. It was a firecracker compared to 
my  pal Clint's long barrel wrecking machine. Not much of a kick and it felt  
"relatively" harmless. I emptied and reloaded the gun a few times and then  
retrieved my silhouetted man. I had some head shots and heart shots, but also  
many outliers that were complete misses. Not bad I thought. I put a new target  
up and sent it back down the line.

Then it was on to my beretta. I  think it had 12 in the mag and one in the 
chamber and I got to load the magazine  myself. It was a bizarre feeling to 
actually load a gun like this -- so easy. I  line it up and fired once. The 
was substantial compared to the little  revolver, but because of its grip shape 
and the balance, it was easy to firmly  re-aim in half a second as the slide 
slid back and chambered another bullet.  Bill informed me that it was 
semi-automatic and I could basically fire it  repeatedly, but that I needed to 
the trigger each time. I tried a set of  three. Bang bang bang. It felt good 
I hit three good shots all to the head.  I let loose, emptying the remaining 
rounds. Bang bang bang bang bang bang in a  few seconds. What a rush, 
tremendously exciting. The next mag I felt a little  profligate and just 
emptied the 
whole thing at once. I think only about half hit  in the centre of the target, 
but I was gaining control. "These things are cool"  

With a little practice I could get good at this -- but why?

Then  I traded my 9mm for Bill's long barrel Magnum. I loaded up the 
revolving part  (sorry, don't know terminology) with bullets and snapped it 
shut. I 
was hesitant  remember the tremendous boom that it made when Bill fired it. I 
squinted and  pulled the trigger. Carnage was unleashed from my hand. The gun 
kicked up a few  inches and I realized that in the future, I need to set my 
wrists a little  stiffer but relaxed so that i didn't hurt myself. The power of 
this gun was  ridiculous and I began to, not so much fear it as much as I 
respected, more  rightly "understood" the power of such a weapon. A few more 
guns, a 
glock, a  special, a something something. We returned them and left.

We walked out  into the sunlight afternoon after our little fantasy land and 
I can honestly say  I still didn't like guns. Now I had a reason. Although it 
was fun and a huge  'rush' [endorphins were kicking], it was also scary and 
brutal. I understood  even more the SOLE reason for inventing/firing a gun is 
do damage. Target  practice is a useful offshoot (pardon the pun) that comes 
with wanting to become  proficient. Afterall, men will compete with ANYTHING 
-- I saw electric  belt-sander races at an autoshow once. But the reason that 
guns exist is to kill  things. That's the flat truth. And they are perfectly 
designed to do that  expeditiously and easily -- even an amateur can do it and 
that's proven every  day in your streets, and sadly, more and more, in OUR 
previously basically  gunless streets.

So... yes, as Lawrence says, it is an interesting  question as to what 
percentage of these people had ever handled a gun, had ever  thought of it, had 
fired etc. I'd also be interested to see, of those who  HAD, who was still 
charged by doing so -- sounds a bit adolescent and if you're  testing 
adolescents, your testosterone readings are going to be COMPLETELY  unreliable. 

As for firing a gun, I know I can never do it again for the  first time and 
if I did, it wouldn't be nearly as novel and my testosterone  levels would 
probably not be affected. I'd still feel the dreaded reality  though. 


Paul Stone
Kingsville,  ON, Canada

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