• Give a Gift
  • Customer Service
  • Promotions
  • Videos
  • Blogs
  • Win
  • Games

May 7, 2007

I Carried a Gun and Loved It

Special Offer

Because I'd always had guns, I always thought I needed them. Now, having spent most of my adult life unarmed and living in New York City-squashed between strangers on the subway without confrontation, counting a full cash drawer alone at night in my basement boutique without incident after I left my job with the DA, and living through the aftermath of September 11th, when the aware-ness of mortality and the fragility of life became part of daily consciousness-I'm more compassionate. It's a huge change from the well-defended person I was in Texas, or the homesick Second-Amendment fanatic I became in New York, the one who voted for George W. Bush in 2000, partly because he was Texan and knew what Ranch Style Beans were. It's a vote I deeply regret, given his "Quick Draw McGraw" way of dealing with the world.

Recently, my sister called to report that she, along with the rest of the family, had aced the concealed-handgun course. Despite having never fired a gun, she got a near-perfect score on the shooting test. Part of me wanted to roll my eyes at the idea of the entire family cleaning their guns together on a Sunday afternoon. Then I recalled the empowering feeling of passing the test myself a decade earlier. And although in that moment I sort of longed to be home on the gun range, wearing noise-canceling earmuffs, clicking the magazine into the butt of a gun, and chambering the first round just to see if I could still do it-I realized I no longer needed a gun to feel powerful. If anything, my willingness to be vulnerable makes me stronger. My newfound ability to live in the moment, rather than in perpetual, agitated anticipation-and dread at maybe having to put a bullet into someone-gives me more joy.

There's a well-known saying in the pro-gun world: "It's better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it." I understand why that makes sense-as long as it's referring to umbrellas and tampons. As for a gun, I've come to believe that not having it and not feeling like I need it is, by far, the best way to be.

This Is A Developing Story
Connect with Marie Claire:
daily giveaway
Win a year’s supply of makeup products from Tarte and a year’s supply of hair products from Hamadi Organics!

Win a year’s supply of makeup products from Tarte and a year’s supply of hair products from Hamadi Organics!

enter now
You Know You Want More
More From World News on Women
The 6 Toughest Single Women in Film (PHOTOS)

Don't mess with these strong female leads.

Into Africa

Driven by equal parts passion and ambition, young Americans are taking a career path less traveled to Rwanda, turning life experience into a world of good, almost 20 years after the genocide.

My Mom And I Share The Same Husband

A mother and daughter having sex with the same man may sound hard to believe, but it's a necessity for women in one Bangladeshi tribe. Not that they're thrilled about it.

post a comment

Special Offer
Link Your Marie Claire Account to Facebook

Marie Claire already has an account with this email address. Link your account to use Facebook to sign in to Marie Claire. To insure we protect your account, please fill in your password below.

Forgot Password?

Thanks for Joining

Your information has been saved and an account has been created for you giving you full access to everything marieclaire.com and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your username and/or password or complete your profile, click here.

Your accounts are now linked

You now have full access to everything Marie Claire and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your settings or profile, click here.