Saturday, April 9, 2011

Girls n' Guns

This weekend marked the state competition in BB gun shooting. I am amazingly proud of my two kids who were part of the competition that encompassed an activity that although protected by the Bill of Rights, is largely shunned by a population of a different mindset.
Sure. Guns are scary. When people use guns for the wrong reasons or use them incorrectly they are tools that can be used for very deadly purposes. Kind of like the alcohol we are forbidden to drink until we are the legal age of 21. Equally deadly but controlled until a certain age. And no classes or clubs that teach the responsible use of alcohol.
And then there are the two ton (more or less) weapons of mass destruction that nearly anyone can receive a license to use on their 16th birthday. . .  cars. 

My kids know how to use guns. They've learned from their father, from the coach at their BB Gun competitions (trust me, they've done more paperwork for this BB gun season that I had in some of my graduate courses), and through absorption from the culture of their lives. Like cars, catapults (which they've made for science projects), bicycles, skateboards, etc, etc, etc, guns can be deadly. You will never see one of my kids grab a gun by its barrel or point a gun irresponsibly. They know better. They know a gun is not something to be played with.

And the success!  I can't ignore their successes in their mastery of the sport.  My daughter seems to be a bit more passionate about shooting than my son.  At least for now.  For my daughter, it has been 7 months of practice and studying to be at the same starting level as others in the club.  She and her brother practice shooting most every day.  In the hallway outside their bedroom (the setup and the use of special indoor targets makes this area a safe and appropriate practice zone). One of the interesting side effects of spending so much time with the sport is that when they choose to play video games, they have no interest in any gun related games.  Having been a part of the bb gun team, they understand the very real consequences of the misuse of guns whether unintentional or intentional.

I'm always proud of all of my kids.  But this weekend I was especially proud of my gun-toting, redneck daughter and son.  And proud to be a redneck myself.