The Pearl-Handled Ladies’ Revolver

The title refers to the stereotypical idea of the sort of gun a “lady” carries in her purse. Which of course is a bag that snaps shut at the top and is carried on the wrist via a short handle, and also contains her powder compact and her “pin money.” More visuals: she is attired in a smart suit of pastel material, is discreetly made up (pink or coral lipstick, never red), pumps and hose, her hair is perfectly coiffed, and she wears white gloves and a hat when out of doors. And of course she is white.

Do you get this picture? I swear this is the figure conservatives envision when they talk about how women should all be trained to carry guns to “defend themselves in case of attack.” Okay, maybe the NASCAR contingent sees a blue-jeans-clad beauty (who is also slender, young, athletic, and wears her hair long and loose… and of course she’s white) with a shotgun slung over her shoulder. But anyway.

This argument, that the proper way to prevent rape is to arm all women, is just so cute. It implies that using a gun ain’t no thing, that shooting another human being ain’t no thing, that you should just be able to “do it” the way people have to put on clothes to go outside. “It’s that simple!” chortle the dudes, half of whom have never picked up a gun in their lives. “If women want to be equal they should do what we do, carry a gun!” crow the males, one-quarter of whom couldn’t hit the side of a barn door with a cannon.

There are so many flaws to that argument, I’m tempted to just sweep them all away with “you’re all idiots.” But that wouldn’t be helpful, would it. I’m here to help. Let’s review some things. First of all, let’s look at the idea of wounding/killing another human being. That’s what “shoot your rapist” means. Of course, I believe all rapists should be shot. Gosh that might mean we’d be rather short of men… trying to see the downside of that… trying… Sorry, sorry, got caught up in a “moment.” Anyway, look. There’s a reason we put army recruits through horrible, dehumanizing training. Despite the best efforts of our society human beings aren’t “natural born killers” — they need to be conditioned. I’ll just mention I’m not going to argue with idiots who think otherwise: in this case the “you’re all idiots” generalization will apply. Anyway, people can’t just kill “just like that” and especially women, who are conditioned in this society to be quiet, yielding, submissive, and to put up with men’s shit at all times.

But I know what this game is. I know. It goes like this: men don’t want to take responsibility for controlling their penises, as usual anything to do with emotions is fobbed off on women. This is how a rapist can say a helpless woman who was nowhere near strong enough to make him do anything “made him” attack her by merely existing in a female form. Women are given the responsibility of controlling the emotional responses of everyone on earth, while men go on their merry way saying “Nope, not me.” This is how they get away with shit, and women have let them do that because being told you can control men with superpower mind controls is a kind of power. Even if it’s not a real one.

Telling women they need to carry a gun is another way of giving us this false power. It’s actually just another responsibility. Because now we not only have to take time out of our lives to make sure we don’t look “provocative” in our dress or manner, we also have to make sure we add yet another thing to the already heavy bag of stuff we carry (and we need it all: the phone to call the police who won’t get there in time, the mace to enrage our attacker so he beats us half to death, the money to assuage his rage just a bit, maybe…) — this time a gun, which will also cost a pretty penny (a decent handgun costs hundreds of dollars; look it the fuck up — and then there are bullets, which also are not cheap) — we have to go to gun classes to learn how to shoot the thing, we have to pay for a license, and then we have to maybe one day shoot a person, or maybe we’ll just get overpowered and have our gun taken away and be shot to death. And added to all this will be the idea that if we don’t do all this crap, it will be OUR FAULT, the way it is now OUR FAULT, the way it’s always OUR FAULT, that we got attacked.

Fuck you, gun people. I have no intention of playing your game. I have no money for this shit — the gun, the classes, the licenses, the ammo, ALL COST MONEY — and furthermore I have no intention of taking any of MY VALUABLE TIME out of my day to learn to use a gun. You know, if guns are your thing, fine. They aren’t mine. They don’t interest me. I don’t want to kill anyone (except maybe some of the smug Joes who push this shit). I pay taxes. Some of those taxes go towards laws and police. It’s their job to protect me. Either do your jobs, or get the fuck out.

And men, your emotions and reactions to the world around you are not my problem. Control your penises. Teach your sons to control theirs. I’m not your mommy. No woman is — even your mommy isn’t supposed to run your life 24/7. Use some of that manly manhood and DO IT YOURSELF.

Today in Misogyny

Guys? Protip: women are on the internet, reading your complaints about your psycho-ex-girlfriend, that you figure you were attracted to because “everyone knows” the cray-cray means she’s always ready to go. You figure it’s compensation for “putting up” with her mental problems. You know what I figure? You’re a rapist. You want to know why? A woman with mental problems might not be able to fully consent to having sex with you. Did you ever think of that when you were getting your jollies off? Or was that part of the attraction?

And talking about her like that on a public forum, as if the fact that she slept with you meant her body was now public property. I’d say “shame on you” but I think you’re beyond shame. So go ahead. Call me a humorless feminazi. I don’t fucking care.

(No links to the comment thread that set me off. It doesn’t really matter anyway — remarks like this are legion wherever — sadly — American men congregate. They never break up with a woman because the relationship just doesn’t work out. No, it was always “she was totally crazy but I’m going to save my masculinity here that is threatened by the idea of me being pussy-whipped by a neurotic female and tell you all that the sex was spectacular.”)