Friday, August 14, 2015
A contrast in gun trades and attitudes
I made a couple of gun trades over the past few days, both of which made me smile for different reasons.
In the first, I traded a Glock 22 in .40 S&W for a Taurus M44 6½"-barrel revolver in .44 Magnum. I didn't need the G22 any more, and I know a young person who likes recoil, is about to turn 21, and would dearly love a .44 Magnum. The used values of the guns were virtually identical, so the owner of the Taurus and I did a straight swap. He went away happy, and someone else is going to be very much that way in the not too distant future. I have a goodly supply of Federal 300gr. CastCore loads that should make the revolver hum right along. I daresay some of them will accompany it when I hand it over.
The second was amusing, because the person with whom I dealt had recently moved to Tennessee from a much more restrictive New England state. He was really worried about the legalities and pitfalls of private firearms transactions. Would I agree to do a background check at a gun dealer? (No.) What about a bill of sale? (Sure, if that makes you happy.) Eventually I sent him an e-mail pointing out that I understood all his concerns, because I'd dealt with other gun owners and sellers who'd made a similar transition. They've come out of an environment where guns are anathematized and those owning, shooting, selling or buying them are objects of suspicion. Here, they're in civilization - or, as I put it to him, "you've left occupied territory and are now in a free state". It was actually quite amusing to see him slowly getting used to the concept that it was OK to make a private sale, and that the cops aren't going to descend upon him, demanding to know how he could be so irresponsible.
I bought a small pocket pistol from him, to back up one of the same model that I already have (on the ancient and time-honored principle that "two is one and one is none"). He's going to use the money from the sale to look for something a little larger, in a bigger caliber. I've invited him to come shooting with me, and sample a selection of my handguns to give him some practical, hands-on experience with what's out there. (That also startled him - the thought that a brand-new acquaintance would be so forthcoming with his guns. What is it in the water up north, that so many people are brainwashed into thinking all gun-owners are eeeeee-billl?)
It's odd to realize yet again that to some of us, firearms are just a normal, natural part of our daily existence; nothing to be frightened of, just tools to be used for any legitimate purpose that comes to hand. On the other hand, there appear to be at least as many people who recoil from firearms (you should pardon the expression), regarding them as evil in and of themselves, just lurking until they can arrange carnage and destruction. There really are two Americas out there . . . and I don't know how (or even whether) the two can be reconciled.