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I grew up in a rural area, and got my first gun (.22 rifle) when I was eleven years old. My dad owned several guns, which were kept in an unlocked gun case in our living room. I'm 37 years old and currently live in Portland and own 11 guns - which I have mainly purchased at a local gun shop. I own guns for recreational purposes (target shooting), hunting, and self defense. I keep a gun near my bedside and the rest stored in a dedicated area of the house. While I've never had to use a gun for self defense, I live in a high crime neighborhood and it's not uncommon to hear gunshots during the night at least a couple times a year. I practice shooting often and hunt a couple times a year - I have literally fired thousands and thousands of rounds throughout my lifetime.
I agree with a previous commenter that guns aren't any more inherently dangerous than your car. However, both guns and cars can be dangerous if people haven't been taught how to use them - or if they are handled like "toys". As my dad taught me, I will teach my kids two basic rules about gun use - 1. never point a gun at something you're not willing to shoot, even if you're absolutely sure it's not loaded 2. always treat a gun as if it's loaded, even if you're absolutely sure it's not loaded.
There are a lot of misconceptions about guns and gun owners. When it comes down to it, the right to own a gun is a constitutional right which will never be taken away. Gun ownership is not the problem. However, discussions of gun control are often at the center of what should be a discussion about poverty, addiction, and crime in this country.
posted 2 years, 4 months ago
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