Recently I posted pictures from my NRA ranger safety officer course on Facebook. A friend posted: “I do not like guns”. It was a legit comment that expresses many people’s view on firearms. Living in Vancouver, a pretty left wing & hippie city, you will often hear similar comments when it comes to guns. Particularly after all the news on shootings, school yard massacres, and active shooter incidents etc., it is not a surprise that we hear comments like this frequently. We are only human and after all, firearms can be use as tools of killing and war.
However, what are you going to do after feeling emotional? Just keep feeling emotional and not deal with it? Why not be educated on the subject that causes you to be emotional? Wouldn’t it be nice to have knowledge about the things you fear, dislike, hate? After all, knowledge is power and what is more powerful than to be able to control your own emotions?
Luckily, in Canada there is a course about firearms mandated by the Canadian federal government itself. The Canadian Firearm Safety Course & Canadian Restricted Firearm Safety Course are comprehensive courses on firearm safe handling. They enabling people to distinguish types of firearms and ammunition, understand range safety, and provide essential knowledge about firearms necessary to handle guns safely. After taking these courses, a couple of shooting courses will equip you with a better understanding when it comes to firearms in your own state or province, and country.
I believe most people in North America are neutral when comes to the topic of firearms; neither extreme right nor extreme left. But even if you are in the extreme left and argue that no one should own firearms except police and military, you should still take the firearm course and shooting course, so you have the grounds on on which to base your opinions. In this day and age everyone has an opinion about everything. Not, however, always a knowledgeable opinion. Too often people without credentials, research or knowledge “take over the mic” and get the spotlight. But now the public doesn’t waste time listening to other people’s opinions if they are based on “emotion” and any logical person with firm beliefs of their own does not base their action upon other people’s “feelings”. The response to emotion is usually emotion. Pro gun people feel threatened when their rights are being questioned or could potentially be taken away; they become emotional and so starts the ugly circle between pro-gun and anti-gun. You hear ignorant opinions and laughable suggestions from the extreme left, then plain scary and militant ideology from the extreme right.
Like it or not, firearms have accompanied the people of North America ( both USA and Canada ) for centuries and continue to do so in today’s society. There is a pragmatic reason for this, regardless of whether or not that reason is hunting, recreation, or self defense against home invasion or animals. It is wrong to hold our interpretation of whether or not someone needs a firearm or not based upon our own personal experience. In the case of open carry, one of the hardest licenses to get in Canada, just this month a cougar attacked a pipeline worker near Grande Prairie, Alberta. A person who works and lives in the city cannot possibly imagine how great it would have been if these two pipeline workers had been able to open carry a pistol when they encountered this cougar in the wild.
In this day and age the hardest thing to do is to admit “I am not a subject expert and I will get back to you after I do my research”. Everyone wants to be smart, everyone wants to act like they have an opinion of their own, but often their information comes from facebook, the internet and movies. The power is within you. Ask yourself: “Would you rather be educated or be emotional?”
Written by: Borki Yony
Edited by: Josh Hensman