Working on an essay about the Great Gun Buying Spree of 2020 and why it makes perfect sense in the cultural context of Gun Culture 2.0, I realized that I bought my first gun 10 years ago this week.
It is a Ruger Mark III .22 pistol I bought for $335 from the now defunct Morris Firearms at Sportsman’s Lodge in Yadkinville, NC.
I will always remember Morris Firearms because Morris used to make me feel like I was inconveniencing him when I was buying guns. Not an uncommon experience for me at gun stores, in fact, and probably a big turn off for some potential gun owners. I am glad I was not deterred.
Other than having to take it to the gunsmith at Pro Shots Range to clean and reassemble, the Mark III has served me well over the years. It is always the first gun my Sociology of Guns seminar students shoot on our field trips to the range at the start of class.
I don’t really have much more to say about this, other than that this purchase kicked off an amazing decade-long personal and scholarly journey through American gun culture. And I hope this realization kicks off a much shorter period of me finally finishing my book on that journey.