The phrase “gun culture” tends to conjure certain stereotypes of frenzied extremists or ignorant hoodlums. As frequently happens with stereotypes, a grain of truth masks the diversity within the millions of gun-owning Americans.
I am a millennial pursuing a career in education. You may have seen me sipping coffee at the Barnes & Noble in Hamburg or browsing craft galleries in Berea. I prefer classical music to country and enjoy nature photography more than hunting.
Where legal, I frequently carry a 10mm Glock while hiking and enjoy target shooting with everything from flintlocks to century-old Mausers to modern semiautomatics.
The man who taught me revolver use was a retired art teacher. You can find the retired postal worker who enjoys hunting or a politically left-leaning social worker who likes a single-shot .308. We might be your grocery clerk, real estate agent, pharmacist or your child’s school principal. We might be repairing your air conditioner or performing a life-saving operation on your relative.
Whatever your opinions on firearms laws — there is a considerable spectrum — please recognize that real people transcend stereotypes.
Jason Kyle Richie