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How I Became a Gunnie

June 9th, 2011 | 4 Comments | Posted in It's all about me, Pass the ammo

Or “How the Liberal Nut Jobs Helped Me Wake Up and Smell the Hoppe’s”

Jennifer asked the question, so here’s the long answer:

I grew up with guns and if I am perfectly honest, I think it made me a little complacent about the 2nd Amendment.  I mean, I grew up thinking that everyone had a gun in the house, it wasn’t until high school that I found out a friend of mine’s family wouldn’t let him come over because we had guns.  My dad was UDT  then went to NIS, and finally became a  NM State Police officer.  Later he moved on to being an investigator (motorcycle gangs and homicide) so there were always guns in the house because of his job.

I remember when I was about seven or eight he took us out onto the mesa and showed us kids what kind of damage a shotgun could do to a watermelon.  After that it became a regular weekend excursion to drive out to the mesa and do some pistol, rifle and shotgun shooting.

At home for plinking my brother and I both had BB guns.  During the summer we would set up targets on the back of the shed and spend hours out there cocking and firing away.  At one point we used each other as targets, a fact which not only broke the four rules (or, followed them in a twisted way), but something that our mom did not learn about until 30 years later.  Later we shared a semi-auto .22 rifle and a CO2 powered pistol and since there was a good supply of soup cans, milk jugs and bottles of various sizes there was always things to aim at.

In high school I did more shooting as part of the USMC JROTC unit.  We did rifle shooting with .22 rifles and learned more gun safety and shooting positions, I managed to get my expert badge too.  After high school though instead of joining the Corps like I wanted to, I ended up in the Navy because at the time the Marines were full up with recruits and I didn’t want to wait around to get out in the world.  Did more shooting in boot camp, got another badge (sharpshooter with pistol) and then didn’t touch a firearm again for four long years ntil I was assigned to the MP’s and went to the range for qualification again.

During that time I had decided that maybe I wanted to be a cop on the outside.  My dad was a cop, both my brothers are cops, so what the heck, right??  So while serving with the MP’s I put myself through the California Police Academy.  Again, more shooting, this time though it was pistol and shotgun.  After graduation though California’s economy crashed (sound familiar) and with no jobs to be had (and not wanting to reenlist with Clinton as President) I moved away and instead ended up in a regular job where I realized something – I was actually happier NOT busting heads.  So, I set about figuring out what I wanted to REALLY do for a living.

So, I ended up at the Columbus College of Art and Design in Ohio working on an animation degree – no time for shooting, heck no time for sleeping!  But, eventually I graduated, got married and then we thought about grad school and that took us from Ohio out to California, and that is where I got the wake up call.

Living in San Francisco I was exposed to a level of crazy that I had really thought was only present in stupid movies.  I met people who were literally willing to trade their freedom away for some kind of perceived safety, and would sell you and I up the river to get it. 9-11 had taught them NOTHING!  I had teachers who thought, and taught, that the government should be in charge of taking care of us and we should never have to lift a finger to get what we want.  The scariest part of these people though was that if you didn’t think like they did, you were a target – not that I really cared, but the whole “You must be assimilated” thing was a bit too far out for me.

When they would find out I was former military, the hostility was obvious.  Not everyone was that way, but enough.  I had one person ask me how I could be conservative and be an artist at the same time.  These people truly hated and didn’t understand a damn thing about the people and rights that kept them free.  They were all very good at spouting off about the 1st Amendment, but most of them only knew the ‘freedom of speech’ part.

At the same time, I had started this blog.  Originally it was just to keep in touch with friends as we moved and a good place to put up some photos, but as I discovered other blogs, and especially gun blogs, I realized that I needed to get back to shooting again and really exercising my 2A rights. So, I got with a friend of mine out there and we began hitting the range and a month later I bought the very first weapon I ever bought for myself, my shotgun Bruce.  When I bought it the girl behind the counter gave me a look like I just killed a kitten in front of her.

Now that I’m back in a free state, the shooting is on, the blogging is on and I’m getting my wife going with us too, and she likes it a lot.

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