Kin Lane

Hello My Old Friend

I have found myself the owner of several firearms. Not by choice, but here they are. I haven’t purchased any firearms since the early 1990s, but at regular intervals over the years find myself with a small cache of weapons because some young male individual in my world hasn’t been responsible enough to possess them. While I grew up “responsibly owning” firearms I would say there were times when I was a young adult male that I should have also had my firearms taken away. Sadly, there wasn’t nobody in my life who was responsible enough to do so, so I had to learn all of this on my own. As I inventory my cache of weapons, writing down make, model, caliber, and serial numbers, I felt like I was hanging out with an old friend as I held each gun in my hand. Stirring up a lot of emotion about where I am, how I got here, and how I see the world around me.

I had forgotten about how the guns whisper to you. They speak your language, and have a single purpose—-to make you feel like you are in control. I had forgotten how powerful you can feel as you hold one in your hands, something that is reinforced by hundreds of Hollywood movies. As soon as you hold one in your hand you are the man. Even one just laying on the table within arms reach makes you the man. With a gun, everything becomes about you. You matter. You are important. People HAVE to listen to you. If people know you are in possession a gun, they will always listen. Right? Of course they will, replies my 9mm. In a world where we have very little control, this is everything. In a world where we have very little experience, as well one that is an increasingly scary, this is everything. The more guns I have, the more control I have. Right? The more guns I own the more I’m insulated and protected from all of “that” out there.

My guns will address every one of those threats out in the world, or so they tell me. My guns assure me that they can deal with any threat, while simultaneously allowing me to see everything out there as a threat needing taken care of. For me, the threats of my youth are not the same threats of 2020. My guns do not care. They just remind me that there are always threats lurking out there—-providing me the opposite of rose colored glasses. My guns protect me from all of these threats, and make sure I stay within reach of my weapons. You never know when a threat can strike. I can’t fly or travel too far with my guns, so I’ll just stay nearby. Which keeps me from ever encountering threats, or ever verifying if there are any threats. I’ll just use the Internet to stay in tune with what is happening, and get all of my work done online. I don’t need to go out there. These thoughts are all so familiar. After 30 years of evolving beyond the reach of these whispers I am once again reminded of how far I have come and how important it has been for me to get out into the world. Out of reach of the whispers that remind me of all of the threats that surround me, allowing me to be more in tune with what is really happening, and evolving beyond what I only knew growing up.

I should just keep these guns. When the shit does hit the fan they will be useful. This time I’m not afraid of those brown, asian, or far off threats. This time I’m worried about the more home grown ones. Ironically, I’m afraid of the same individuals I grew up around. Demonstrating for me how guns just perpetuate and cultivate fear. In 2020 I’m not afraid of my enemies like I was back in 1990. I don’t need guns. I know that guns won’t save me from the government, or even the white militias I grew up around. I know that living my life in fear is more of a threat than any one of the threats which my guns can whisper in my ear. Being afraid is what all of the guns want. It is what they feed on. I refuse to focus on someone breaking into my house each day, assaulting me on the street, or when things get so bad in this world that I need a gun to survive. You are wrong my old friend. You sound like so many of my old junkie friends. Promising me a dark future so that I freeze up, stop experiencing the world, ensuring misery has company. A gun doesn’t give me more power and control. A gun doesn’t keep me safe. A gun just ensures I always view the world through a lens of fear, and I see no other way of living.

It is strange to have such a long romantic history with guns. Thinking back to my first Ruger 10/22, then my .54 caliber Hawkins black power rifle, and every firearm in between. Then think about all the times I haven’t owned a firearm. Guns have such an aura. They have such an immense tractor beam when it comes to the negative. A gun can always make a bad situation worse. Guns rarely solve any human situation in a humane way. I am not interested in hanging out with you old friend. Sure, I have fond memories of going to the mountains and shooting. I can obsess over taking apart, cleaning, and putting you back together. But, I don’t like the way you feel in my hands anymore. I don’t like the thought of you being in the closet. I don’t like the ways you make me think about war, societal collapse, and incentivize me to focus my hatred on whoever the enemy du jour is. I’d rather live my life. I’d rather be able to freely travel. I’d rather be able to move from state to state and country to country without you as a ball and chain. I’d just rather live than focus on some event that may never happen, and dwell on Hollywood style action thrillers that might exist around every corner—-only to be disappointed when life is the same old jam that is passing me by leaving me helpless and out of control. I’d rather live today, over always worrying about tomorrow.