Personal and Political ~ Josette Brose-Eichar

Josette Brose-Eichar

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What guns do

Posted on December 6, 2021 by Josette Brose-Eichar

From a very young age I knew guns kill. That is the purpose of a gun, to kill animals or other humans. A 17-year-old brings a gun to a protest, kills two people, and is acquitted on all counts. The verdict was that it was self-defense. If you bring a gun, then you must know that if you use it, you most likely will kill another being.

The US Supreme Court is now looking at repealing New York’s law regulating carrying concealed weapons. This will influence other states, like California, with similar laws. According to those supporting this, it is a constitutional right and concealed weapons are needed for self-defense.

When is it self-defense to pull out a gun and shoot another living being? Is it when someone shoves you in a rude manner? Is it when a dog growls at you? For me the most frightening thing is that one day I can be in a supermarket or other public place and not know if I am surrounded by a bunch of people toting guns.

In Minnesota my father would disappear for weeks at a time during various hunting seasons.  Our house was full of guns for every type of killing. When he returned from these trips, I would look at the purpose of these guns, death. A deer would be laying, gutted, and I would look at the creature’s lifeless eyes. Ducks, geese, pheasants, wild turkeys, or grouse would lie in a heap with their lifeless heads flopping over one another. The deer would be carted off to a butcher. I would help my mother clean the lifeless birds. The kill would be wrapped and put in the big freezer in the basement. I would help my mother in the kitchen as she created her wild game recipes. I knew something was wrong, yet as a child I was not sure what to do about it.  

I was lucky to land a high paying job as a union supermarket cashier when I was in college.  With my part time wages, I out-earned my father and was able to live on my own. One day at work I overheard two of the teenaged bag boys bragging about how they were breaking into homes and robbing them. I told them both that they should beware. One day they could break into a home owned by someone like my father, and he would shoot them. They told me they had not thought of that. 

One night, just before closing as I was ringing up the last customer, I felt an arm around my neck, and pressure at the side of my head. I thought it was one of the bag boys trying to cop a feel. But, no; I turned and was face to face with a man in a ski mask and he had a gun to my head. I knew what guns can do. I proceeded carefully as he dragged me from cash register to cash register.

Strangely, I did not become a vegetarian until I was in my early 40s. Sometimes I wonder what took me so long. Life has taught me, guns have only one purpose, to kill, and our society’s unwillingness to face that fact dooms us to living in a violent and fearful state.



4 thoughts on “What guns do

  1. Just read a story from the UK. A pedestrian killed a 40 year driver with a large knife, stabbing him to death in front of his young son in the back of car, the killer then went camping. Evil people will always find a way to kill other people. Maybe if the driver was allowed to carry a firearm he might’ve been alive today.Alexander Layton murdered James Stokoe, 40, in his BMW while his four-year-old son was strapped in a car seat.

  2. What a piece of crap article. Guns don’t do anything without a person aiming or shooting it. Guns aren’t evil, but some people are.

  3. I did not discuss good or evil. And even though my views are considered by commenters as crap, one can not deny that the purpose of a gun is to kill. The 3 who commented so far, show how far we have to go to create a society where violence is not considered normal. I get about 550 words in these columns. What I could not write about was my conversation with the man who robbed me at gun point. Now keep in mind he had his gun to my head during this conversation. As I began emptying my cash register into a bag for him, he said, “I want all the money, lift up the tray and I can see your cop button, so don’t touch it.” I lifted up the tray and under it were large bills, checks and food stamps. I said, “Do you want the checks and food stamps” And he said, “Don’t get smart with me or I will blow your brains out.” He then dragged me from register to register with the gun still to my head. I did not ask again, as I gave him all the cash. Keep in mind people did not use credit and debit cards in the 70’s to buy groceries. As he let go of me and walked toward the door he said flippantly, “You can hit your cop button now.” While I was recovering and talking to the police they told me that it is always best to stay calm when someone has a gun, do not resist, give them what they want. And they told me the worst is when someone else has a gun and thinks they can protect you, it will most likely get you killed. And last I wonder how many mass murders could be accomplished with knives. Could a man shower knives down on concert goers and kill 58 people in a matter of minutes?

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