The last thing I ever thought I’d see was the Huffington Post run a story about gun ownership in any way, shape, or form and present it in a way that didn’t make me want to hurl things through the air at the stupidity. After all, the site is notoriously liberal, and that means anti-Second Amendment. The site is littered with anti-gun posts, so many that it’s impossible to think of the site as being remotely pro-gun.
Well, the post they ran yesterday won’t unwind that image from your mind, but it actually as a fair look at a certain segment of gun ownership. In particular, black ownership of firearms.
In the post, they interview a number of black gun owners, including Black Guns Matter founder Maj Toure.
It doesn’t appear that HuffPo edited for content, though they do admit they did edit for length–which makes some sense considering some interviews might run long.
What does appear, however, is a testimony to how much work needs to be done.
Time and time again, there’s a portrait painted of the average gun owner. It’s that of a white male, middle to upper class financially, and probably a devout Christian.
To be sure, that fits a whole lot of us, but there is a pile of gun owners who it doesn’t fit, and we seriously need to think about how to fix that perception. After all, it becomes harder for anti-gun zealots to go after guns when one of their target demographic groups are embracing them.
Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done.
The mainstream media has done a fine job of muddying the waters on guns. As the post notes, the Tamir Rice incident looms large in any such discussion, mostly because the press failed to try and understand how something like that could happen. After all, they already had a reason: racism.
However, toy guns can look awfully realistic, especially in the split-second a police officer has to make a decision.
The Huffington Post piece does show one important factor, however. It shows that black gun owners aren’t monolithic in their thoughts, opinions, and experiences. While some recount what they believe are troubling encounters with police, others make it clear they’ve had nothing but positive interactions with law enforcement. Some view firearms as key for personal defense while others have bought the leftist line of how guns make you less safe.
In other words, there’s no single experience for black gun owners, which isn’t surprising. There’s no single experience for any kind of gun owners.
Yet it’s clear that we, as a community, haven’t done a particularly good job at reaching out to these other gun owners. It seems that most don’t understand that no, we don’t view black gun owners as thugs. We view them as kindred spirits, fellow travelers who have also embraced their sacred right to keep and bear arms.
They’re not any different than us, and that’s important. After all, if the gun grabbers take our guns, they’ll grab theirs as well.