I am taking time out of my work to write this because I would like to
share my thoughts with other women.
As an immigrant from a country whose citizens do not possess
guns, I was amazed, even appalled, that private citizens could own
guns. I grew up believing that only the police and military had a right
to carry guns because of the nature of their work. I lived through four
military takeovers of an elected government. Each time, many of us
lived in fear, powerless to do anything about military excesses. I
personally witnessed people bludgeoned with the ends of bayonets. I
read reports of innocent people killed because some policeman's pride
had been injured. On one occasion, I was forced to flee the capital and
live with friends because stray bullets shattered the windows of our
home. We had no right to defend ourselves. We never questioned that.
He who has never known freedom does not miss it.
Twelve years ago, I came to America and became a high school
teacher in a Christian school. Christian schools are not immune from
violence. One evening, a student whose girlfriend had left him came to
the school with a gun. His intention was to intimidate the person he
believed was responsible for the break-up with his girlfriend. When a
day-care teacher confronted him, he pulled out the gun and threatened
her. Fortunately, the situation was resolved without bloodshed, but
the teacher was unarmed. She had preschoolers in her care and no way to
protect them. We thank God that no one was hurt, but the point is that
she was powerless to do anything to deter the gunman.
When I separated from my husband, he began stalking me. Again,
I felt powerless. The more powerless and scared I became, the more
daring he got, until I became convinced that he might kill me one day.
At a hearing, I broke down on the witness stand and told the judge that
if I died an accidental death, my death should be investigated. I did
not understand the value of my life as God saw it. I spent my time
waiting, wondering when IT was going to happen. Then one day, it hit me:
I was letting my life be controlled by another human being who had no
right to take my life. Until that moment, I couldn't make up my mind
about guns. Reading the GOA website was the turning point for me. For
the first time, I understood how precious my life is. My ex-husband
stopped stalking me after I threatened him some years ago; but I cannot
assume that he or anyone else will never make a threat on my life.
The fact is that, unlike in the movies, real-life violence does not come with
a warning, that eerie music that tells you something terrible is about to
happen. Nor can one legislate morality. As a Christian
school teacher, I should know. All the rules and laws in the world
does not change the heart. What changes the actions of a person intent
on violence is lack of opportunity and dreaded, instant punishment.
America is a land of freedom, and we should fight to keep our
freedom. The loss of freedom is gradual. Any colonized people know
that. It starts with giving an inch here and there, and before one
knows it, one has lost it all. We need to fight to make sure that
America does not become like countries whose citizens have been so
whipped that they do not know there is such a thing as the right to
protect oneself. We women in particular need to be able to defend
ourselves in a decisive manner against violence. We need to do it for
our country, and for our children.
This document was donated to our archives by Gun Owners of
America -- the NO COMPROMISE defenders of liberty on Capitol