A woman who wrote a piece about growing up with guns and then being held hostage by an ex-boyfriend with a gun has written a piece that made its way to various “social justice” websites including The Good Men Project. The following is a conversation between the woman and her husband:
“We will never, ever, ever have guns in this house. Ever.”
I’m not going to say I was surprised, but I was mostly amused. He must have been thinking I was talking about a hand-gun or an assault weapon or something—I just called it a Winchester over-and-under, and he must not have really processed what that meant.
“It’s just a shotgun,” I explained carefully, thinking that would clear things up nicely.
“Never, ever, ever,” he repeated.
Well, okay. It was a gut-check reaction; that was obvious. He hadn’t grown up around guns, and he’d spent a lot of his time advocating for assault weapon bans. He wasn’t able to put this in perspective right away, so I’d just patiently explain it to him.
“Honey, it’s not a Glock. It’s just a shotgun. It’s the ideal home defense weapon, because it makes a loud sound when you load it, and the spread is—”
This is where it gets good:
“What if you killed someone in our house?” he shot back, not letting me finish.
I blinked. Several times.
“Well. I mean. There’s a lot of ritual and meditation that goes into loading a shotgun, so it’s kind of hard to accidentally kill the postman…”
“I’m not talking about that; I’m talking about what if you killed some poor kid that broke in to steal our television? I’d never forgive you!”
Wow. What a sentence, right? Fraught, pregnant with meaning.
We don’t live in a traditionally “great” neighborhood. Our blue-collar working-class neighborhood is pretty low for violent crime, but it’s high for theft and such. And I was alone, a lot, both the year before and the year after we were married.
“Luke, I…well I’d have to assume…if someone did break into our house while I was here, I’d have to assume that they were there to do me harm. I mean, you just have to make that assumption. Would you rather me be dead or the kid that broke into our house?”
It was obvious by his silence who he’d prefer, and so I spent the next two nights in the guest room.