There have been many situations over the years in which I have felt uncomfortable, intimidated and even out of place. One specific example was at a pro-2A conference. I was asked to speak about why and how women (and moms) are getting involved with self-protection and firearms training. Personally, I felt my message was important and needed to be heard. But as I was surrounded by fellow speakers who were politicians, law enforcement officers and national news commentators, for a moment, I started to second-guess myself. Why? The 2nd Amendment community is made up of some pretty tough — and some very impressive — folks! There are a lot of people from our armed forces or from law enforcement backgrounds, and there are many who have grown up around firearms or who have shot for most of their lives.
Then there’s me: A mom with a gun. Someone who did not grow up with guns in the home or start training at an early age. I got involved with the shooting/outdoors industry nearly two decades ago, but I still consider my concealed carry journey to be relatively new.
Luckily, the 2nd Amendment community is also made up of some pretty diverse — and some very unique — individuals. And that’s why I wanted to take a moment to share something that’s very important to me: We don’t all have to be hammers. We don’t all have to be pounding at people to see it our way or to change their ways. We don’t have to yell or scream, belittle or boycott. We don’t have to use a rough approach or have a tough attitude. In the figurative toolbox that contains all of our gun-loving members, there are special functions and uses for ALL of the tools. We don’t have to come from a certain background or have the exact same skills or experiences. We can be loud. We can be quiet. We can be quick. We can be slow. We can stay behind the scenes and work on all the nitpicky details. Or we can jump on stage and showcase the big picture. Every tool has a specific purpose and an important role. And this amazing assortment of tools is able to function very well together to work on — and complete — various tasks.
Whether you relate more to a hammer, a saw, a level or a ruler, you belong here. You are part of a growing, thriving community of people who are passionate about protecting and preserving life. Your story is part of OUR story. And as long as we live our lives in such a way that people recognize we are passionate, and as long as we stay consistent and vigilant, I believe we all can make a difference.
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